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Report: Redskins interested in All-Pro CB Josh Norman


Report: Redskins interested in All-Pro CB Josh Norman

Two years ago, a star player was set free by his team well after the big-money activity in free agency had died down. The Redskins moved quickly and signed DeSean Jackson just a few days after the Eagles released him.

Now the Panthers have rescinded the franchise tag on All-Pro cornerback Josh Norman well after the end of most free agent activity, will the Redskins make a play for him? According to a report, they will.

Adam Schefter of ESPN tweeted that the Redskins are among the four teams who have shown the most interest in signing Norman since he became an unrestricted free agent late yesterday afternoon. The others with a high level of interest are the 49ers, Steelers, and Dolphins. Schefter said that many other teams are also in the mix.

In many ways, this would be an uncharacteristic move for GM Scot McCloughan. He frequently has talked about the draft being the foundation of the team and that signing older (Norman will be 29 before the season is over), expensive (he is reported to be seeking a contract worth $16 million per year) free agents. Last month during the frenzy of free agent activity McCloughan and the Redskins showed no real interest in any big-money free agents. Why McCloughan would be interested in such a player now when there was no interest six weeks ago?

But Norman could be different. He plays with the kind of attitude that McCloughan loves. Premium cornerbacks are hard to come by and getting one will usually cost considerable resources, whether it’s draft picks or cap dollars. If you can justify spending big money on a free agent, cornerback is one where you can possibly justify it.

The Redskins certainly could make the cap work if they did want to make a bid for Norman. They have about $11.6 million in cap space right now. A $16 million contract could be structured so that it would take up only about $6 million in cap space in 2016. They could nearly cover that by releasing cornerback Chris Culliver, a move that would save $5.5 million against the cap.

Showing some preliminary interest in a free agent is a long way from signing him to a contract. We will see how this plays out over the next several days. One would think that the teams involved would want to get something with Norman wrapped up before the draft, which is a week from today, so that they have a handle on their needs.

It might be hard not to root for this to happen in terms of the potential entertainment value. The Redskins play the Panthers this year plus their annual two meetings with Odell Beckham Jr. You know that Norman will be fired up to play his old team and his battle with Beckham last years crossed the line from NFL to WWE. 

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Pernell McPhee reportedly on visit with Redskins


Pernell McPhee reportedly on visit with Redskins

NFL free agency doesn't care about your brackets. 

While you were watching UMBC, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reported that Bears linebacker Pernell McPhee is currently on a visit with the Redskins:

Pernell, 29, was drafted in 2011 out of Mississppi State by the Baltimore Ravens. He played there for three years before spending the last two seasons with the Chicago Bears. 

Pernell has 182 career tackles and 31 career sacks. 


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The 2018 salaries of five Redskins become fully guaranteed today

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The 2018 salaries of five Redskins become fully guaranteed today

It may be the 18th of March but today could be like Christmas for five Redskins players.

The Redskins decided to use today, four days after the start of the league year, for some contract triggers. In this case, the triggers are all 2018 salary guarantees (some teams will pay out roster bonuses on trigger dates, but the Redskins rarely use that type of structure).

Here are the players whose have guarantees that kick in today 4 p.m. All data is via Over the Cap.


CB Josh Norman, base salary of $13.5 million becomes fully guaranteed—This was a window for the Redskins to move on from Norman if they were not happy with his performance after two seasons. He is 31 and he had no interceptions last season, leaving some to wonder if the Redskins might think about releasing him. But it never was a consideration.

TE Jordan Reed, $8 million of his $8.25 million salary becomes fully guaranteed—No, I’m not sure why they are leaving that $250,000 out there non-guaranteed. Fans thought that the Redskins might move on from Reed due to his injury issues. But, as with Norman, it never was a consideration.

S D.J. Swearinger, $3 million base salary becomes fully guaranteed—This is a mere technicality, Swearinger wasn’t going anywhere after helping to solidify the safety position.


RB Chris Thompson, $1.996 million base salary becomes fully guaranteed—His rehab is going well and after last year Thompson’s two-year, $7 million contract extension signed last September looks like a good deal for the team.

DE Terrell McClain, $3.25 million base salary becomes fully guaranteed—If the Redskins sign a top free agent D-lineman or draft on early in the draft they could be in a numbers crunch. That new acquisition would be guaranteed a roster spot along with Jonathan Allen, Matt Ioannidis, Stacy McGee, and Anthony Lanier. That makes five and the Redskins kept six last year. Ziggy Hood is a favorite of the coaching staff but he has no guaranteed money left on his contract. That could tip the sixth spot in favor of McClain if he is on the roster at the close of business today. If they release McClain after today, they would take a cap charge of over $2 million. It seems unlikely that anything will happen but it’s something to keep an eye on.

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.