With Trent Williams’ roster exemption expiring next week, the Redskins have placed the Pro Bowl tackle on the Non-Football Injury list, the team announced on Thursday.
That means the team can keep Williams off the active roster without releasing him and have the option to withhold full payment of his 2019 contract at their own discretion. The NFI list also might be a tool to not have the 2019 season toll on Williams’ contract, but any movement of that sort by the Redskins would likely be challenged by the NFL Players' Association.
Williams reported to the Redskins hours before the NFL Trade Deadline hit on October 29th, ending a months-long holdout that caused him to miss eight games in the process. Whatever goodwill Williams’ arrival to the team’s Ashburn headquarters brought quickly dissipated when the seven-time Pro Bowler failed a physical due to discomfort putting on a helmet.
Things got worse once Williams finally addressed the media, the first time he’s spoken publicly since the holdout began over the summer. In a nearly 20-minute session taking questions from reporters, Williams explained that he felt he had been misdiagnosed by Washington’s medical staff and that “there’s no trust” with the organization. Various reports later provided different accounts of what Williams' claimed, but the damage was already done.
In the last year, Williams was diagnosed with DFSP, a rare type of cancer that could be life-threatening. He was treated and is now cancer-free, but the ordeal changed his view of the Redskins, Williams explained.
Sources also told NBC Sports Washington that despite returning to the team Williams would never play for the Redskins again. That came before the failed physical.
After Williams' comments, the Redskins requested a joint medical inquiry by the NFL and the NFLPA to review Williams' care from the Washington medical staff. Williams asked that the NFLPA deny the inquiry, and the union acted on behalf of their player's request.
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The NFL levied fines for unnecessary roughness to the Redskins linebacker Ryan Anderson and Panthers special teamer DeAndrew White after they delivered hits that forced opposing players to exit the game between the two teams in Week 13.
Anderson was ejected for a helmet-to-helmet hit on Panthers tight end Greg Olsen in the third quarter. Olsen exited the game with a concussion and didn’t return. He’s been declared inactive ahead of Carolina’s Week 14 matchup with the Atlanta Falcons.
Redskins fans were disgruntled with the referees for ejecting Anderson but allowing White to stay in the game when the crown of his helmet caught the facemask of Redskins punt returner Trey Quinn. Quinn was also pulled from the game with a concussion and has been declared inactive for Week 14.
Washington went on to win the game, 29-21.
Both players were given the same fine of $28,075 for their respective hits.
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The Redskins might struggle to get the new head coach they want due to the organization’s unique front-office structure, according to a new report.
Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer reported that some potential head coaching candidates are not sure they can properly function in Washington under the leadership of team president Bruce Allen and the existing front-office infrastructure.
“My understanding is they've gotten some pushback on the current structure of the organization from some of those candidates,” Breer said during an appearance on 106.7 the Fan’s Grant and Danny program.
The Redskins fired head coach Jay Gruden after he opened the season 0-5 and promoted Bill Callahan to interim head coach. In the weeks since Callahan took over, Washington is 3-4 and on a two-game win streak with the Green Bay Packers on tap this Sunday.
While Callahan has stabilized the Redskins to some degree, it seems highly unlikely that he keeps the job in 2020. It’s also unclear if Allen will remain as team president and football boss. NBC Sports Washington and other reports have shown that Allen is under more scrutiny than ever in his 10-year tenure as team president and could be gone after this season.
It’s been a rough year for Allen, as the team is in the middle of an awful season and standout left tackle Trent Williams has called him out personally for ugly tactics during a contract holdout.
What that means going forward remains to be seen.
Breer said NFL teams are starting to make covert outreach to potential coaching candidates, particularly college coaching candidates, and that the team is getting “pushback” because of the existing power structure.
"My sense is that they've already gotten the feeling that the head coach search is going to be affected by the way that the building has operated for the last 10 years," Breer said.
The past 10 years mark Allen’s tenure, the era of no playoff wins and many, many embarrassing situations.
If coaching candidates have reservations, it’s hard to blame them.
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