Apparently, entering the season with two young, strong defensive linemen from the SEC wasn't enough for the Redskins. So on Labor Day, the team went out and found a third.

After waiving Anthony Lanier, Washington picked up Florida product and ex-Brown Caleb Brantley. The second-year pro didn't make Cleveland's final roster and will now look to find a home with an organization he envisioned himself with heading into the 2017 Draft.

"This was one of my pre-draft visits," Brantley told reporters after wrapping up his first practice with the 'Skins. "This is one of the places I thought I was going to come, that I liked, but it didn't end up happening that way. I'm just glad to be here to get the opportunity. Just looking to make the most of it."

The D-lineman looked like a second or third-round prospect heading into last year's draft, but an alleged incident with a woman led to him being charged with misdemeanor battery and pushed him all the way down to the sixth round. The charges were later dropped.

"No matter what I say people are going to think what they think," he said about his past. "Everything that came to light, came to light. But nobody cares about that. I’m just here to play ball.”

When asked about the decision to swap in Brantley for Lanier, Jay Gruden explained that the 24-year-old is a more well-rounded player.


"We thought Caleb adds a little bit more to the defensive line room," the head coach said. "He was disruptive in the passing game. He was a good pass rusher along with decent against the run."

Brantley copied one of Gruden's words in describing what he'll bring to the defense.

"I feel like I can add pressure up the middle and just be a disruptive force," he said.

The move has plenty of upside, as Brantley is just a year removed from a fairly dominant college career and is joining a unit that already boasts Jonathan Allen, Daron Payne and Matt Ioannidis. He's also excited to have a veteran like Ziggy Hood to learn from and is very aware of Jim Tomsula's reputation as a teacher and coach.

He'll have to react positively to the humbling experience of being released, however, and also pick up his new team's scheme and way of doing things quickly. He spoke often of controlling what he can control both as a player and in life when meeting the local media for the first time. Will he take control of this new opportunity?


For more analysis of the Caleb Brantley signing, check out this episode of the Redskins Talk podcast.