Washington drafted Brandon Scherff with the fifth overall pick in 2015, and if the Pro Bowl guard can control it, he will finish his career wearing Burgundy and Gold.
“I would like to stay here. My wife and I love it here,” Scherff said Friday speaking with the Washington Football Talk podcast. Scherff is playing the 2020 season on the franchise tag, which pays him $15 million but expires at the end of the season. That means Scherff could be a free agent next March.
“We love all our teammates and coaches here,” Scherff said. “I’ve always told her I want to stay where I got drafted to finish it out so I would love to stay here.”
Ron Rivera spoke highly of Scherff as a player and teammate this month, but quarterback Alex Smith’s comments about Scherff this week stood out.
“I think Brandon’s the total package. From a talent standpoint I think that he’s the best player in that position in the league, one of the best teammates I’ve ever had,” Smith said. “It means so much to him. He’s so invested into this team. Like I said, you can feel his energy in the huddle. You certainly miss it when he’s gone. It’s significant. He’s that type of player. Not just from, like I said, a talent standpoint, but certainly his leadership, his energy, and the attitude he brings to the huddle every day.”
Smith has been in the NFL for more than a dozen years, so the praise is high and warranted. Scherff is playing at an elite level, though he did miss three games earlier this year with a knee sprain. He hasn’t played a full 16-game season since 2016, but when he’s on the field, he’s a mauler.
With Scherff back in the lineup, Washington’s run game has opened up as part of the three-game win streak. With rookie running back Antonio Gibson hurt, the team might need to lean more on the pass game, though Scherff is equally capable in either situation.
Due to COVID-19 expenditures and decreased revenue, the NFL salary cap is actually expected to decrease for the 2021 season. Still, there will be a big market for Scherff’s services. He wants to stay in Washington, and the team will get the first crack at re-signing him. After that, it could be free agency.