Ron Rivera is bringing Panthers coaches up to D.C. in droves. His new offensive coordinator and reportedly new receivers coach, tight ends coach, offensive line coach and linebackers coach all previously worked for Carolina, not to mention the key new trainer Rivera also brought to Washington.
What will be interesting to see is if that trend continues when free agency opens and Rivera gets the chance to pursue some of his ex-players. If it does, keep these three names in mind.
In 2016, the Redskins signed a corner from the Panthers who wore No. 24. Four years later, they very well could have a chance to do that again.
This time around, the defensive back is James Bradberry. Bradberry, who'll turn 27 in August, has missed just one contest in the past three seasons and is coming off a three-interception effort in 2019.
Of course, the Burgundy and Gold are in need of a starting corner largely thanks to the failures of the guy Bradberry replaced in Carolina. While Josh Norman's chances of sticking around in Washington were boosted once Rivera took over, it still feels quite likely that he's done in Washington.
So, could Bradberry again follow Norman, but this time with the Redskins? Perhaps. However, if he does indeed reach free agency, the team will have to be ready to pay for his services, considering he's a productive player who's still well within his prime.
Landon Collins is entrenched at his safety spot in Jack Del Rio's defense, but the other position in the back end needs to be addressed. Montae Nicholson is wildly inconsistent on the field, and backups like Troy Apke and Deshazor Everett feel best-suited for roles on special teams.
Boston, a soon-to-be 28-year-old, signed a one-year deal with the Panthers late last July. It was odd to see a guy with his kind of stats available so late into the offseason — for his career, the veteran now has 14 picks and 38 passes defensed in 60 starts — but he eventually ended up with Rivera in Carolina.
Now, Boston will again hit the market. The Redskins, like 30 other franchises in 2019, passed over him a year ago. This time, though, maybe Rivera pulls the trigger and opts to pair him with Collins.
Greg Van Roten
The first two names on this list would be splashier, more expensive signings. Van Roten, on the other hand, would be on the quieter, cheaper side, but he'd be an important addition nonetheless.
Van Roten started all 16 games at left guard for the Panthers in 2018 and was on his way to doing that again in 2019 before suffering a dislocated toe in Week 12. The injury forced the near 30-year-old to go on injured reserve.
If Washington feels like that injury isn't a major issue, then Van Roten makes sense as a guard to watch. Brandon Scherff and Ereck Flowers are currently without contracts, and while it'd be nice to bring both of them back, that would be a pricey pair of moves to execute. A combination of one of those linemen and Van Roten may be the better play for the Redskins.
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