Redskins

Quick Links

Redskins defensive line reset: Cost/benefit analysis of cutting Ricky Jean-Francois

Redskins defensive line reset: Cost/benefit analysis of cutting Ricky Jean-Francois

In the last week the Redskins said goodbye to their two best defensive linemen from 2016 in Chris Baker and Ricky Jean-François. Baker was an unrestricted free agent, and though the team did not attempt to re-sign him, Swaggy left of his own volition.

François' situation was different. He was under contract, and the 'Skins cut him. Let's break down the move like its business school with a cost/benefit analysis.

Costs

  • Losing François hurts most in the locker room. A vocal leader, the 30-year-old veteran did not hesitate to challenge his teammates for better play during tough stretches. 
  • Signed by Scot McCloughan in 2015 with a nod toward changing the locker room culture, count one fewer player with ties to the 'Skins former GM.

Benefits

  • The Redskins immediately save $3 million towards the 2017 salary cap by releasing François. 
  • François was not overly productive in two seasons with the Redskins. He will turn 31 this season, and with the signings of Terrell McClain and Stacy McGee, it's likely François would compete for more snaps.

Those are the facts. Looking beyond that for insight, it's possible François' recent criticism of the team played a part in his release. As sensational as that sounds, however, remember this was a player on the 24th ranked rush defense that lost snaps to Ziggy Hood, a free agent the team did elect to bring back.

<<<LOOKING AT REDSKINS DRAFT PROSPECTS>>>

Want more Redskins? Check out @JPFinlayCSN for live updates or click here for the #RedskinsTalk Podcast on iTunes, here for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!

Quick Links

Cris Collinsworth tells Redskins fan Dale Earnhardt. Jr. how the team can create leverage with No. 2 pick

Cris Collinsworth tells Redskins fan Dale Earnhardt. Jr. how the team can create leverage with No. 2 pick

If there was a Mount Rushmore for celebrity Redskins fans, Dale Earnhardt Jr. would certainly make the list.

And he, like every other Redskins fan, is wondering what the team will do with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.

On Wednesday, the semi-retired NASCAR driver joined NBC Sports' Mike Tirico and Cris Collinsworth on an edition of Lunch Talk Live, where Earnhardt was able to ask Collinsworth a bunch of hard-hitting questions regarding Ohio State's Chase Young and Alabama's Tua Tagovailoa that many fans would like to know.

The driver first asked Collinsworth if the talk about the Redskins potentially moving back in the draft to acquire multiple picks is legitimate, and the Sunday Night Football broadcaster told Earnhardt he believes it is.

"Yeah, I think so. If you want Tua, you have to jump up there somewhere," Collinsworth said. "So a lot of people are assuming it's Detroit that they're going to make that trade with. If I'm the Redskins, I would be telling everybody I know how much I love Tua. Because if they want to make that deal, I want them coming up and making that deal with me."

WATCH THE FULL INTERVIEW BELOW

Collinsworth went on to explain that even if the Redskins do want to take Young, they should continue to make teams believe that they're at least semi-interested in drafting Tagovailoa. Otherwise, QB-needy teams will try to strike a deal with the Lions at No. 3 first, knowing they probably won't have to give up as much compensation in return.

Earnhardt then asked whether the Redskins should even consider trading back if the opportunity presents itself, as Young may be too talented of a prospect to pass up.

"I think the Chase Young question is a big one, too," Collinsworth said. "Is he really one of those Lawrence Taylor, generational pass rusher kind of guys? Because you're going to feel awfully stupid if you trade him out. Conceivably, you could even trade back to four or five, depending on how the rest of the draft ends up going, and still have a chance [at Chase Young]."

Collinsworth explained that the Lions really need a cornerback, and there will likely be a very solid one on the board at No. 3 with Ohio State's Jeff Okudah. At No. 4, the New York Giants could also take an offensive lineman, as they have a gaping hole at left tackle.

So, if a quarterback-needy team like the Miami Dolphins at No. 5 of Los Angeles Chargers at No. 6 comes calling, there could conceivably still be a chance the Redskins trade back and land Young.

"Could Chase Young fall? Could you still get him at five?" Collinsworth asked. "That's what makes it fun. Nobody knows what's going to come out of this thing."

CLICK HERE TO SUBSCRIBE TO THE REDSKINS TALK PODCAST

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, teams have been unable to bring in prospects to their own facilities. That means no individual workouts, no in-person interviews, and no team doctors have not been able to examine players. The last part is extremely crucial for Tagovailoa, as he's continuing to recover from a dislocated hip injury he suffered in November.

The former Alabama QB claims to be 100 percent healthy, but no team doctors have been able to confirm that due to the circumstances.

"How do you know?" Collinsworth said on Tua's health. "It's even worse this year because they can't get him on campus and have their own doctors take a look at him. So it adds to the intrigue."

Collinsworth also brought up the Redskins second-year passer Dwayne Haskins and thinks it's far too early for the Redskins to give up on him.

"You have Dwayne Haskins, who was good last year," Collinsworth said. "He had his moments. If you compare him to the other rookie quarterbacks, he was right in there. It's going to take a little while for him to get up and running."

To conclude the interview, Earnhardt asked Collinsworth that if the draft happened today, what he thinks would happen. His response should please many of the Redskins fans pleading to stay at No. 2.

"If I had to bet my house today, I would guess Chase Young goes to Washington," Collinsworth said.

Stay connected to the Capitals and Wizards with the MyTeams app. Click here to download for comprehensive coverage of your teams.

MORE REDSKINS NEWS: 

Quick Links

For those thinking the Redskins could go with Kyle Allen over Dwayne Haskins, consider this

For those thinking the Redskins could go with Kyle Allen over Dwayne Haskins, consider this

Kyle Allen's acquisition has led some to wonder if Dwayne Haskins is now in a true fight for the Redskins' starting quarterback job. DeAngelo Hall came out with comments saying as much last week, and his opinion is shared by a few other analysts and some fans, too.

That outcome is certainly on the table, sure, and it moves closer to the center of the table the longer Coronavirus keeps teams away from the facility. If the offseason gets cut short or erased entirely, Allen's familiarity with Scott Turner's offense goes from a very useful trait to something that could be enough for him to take the field in Week 1. 

But as long as there is some semblance of normalcy over the coming months, Haskins should be Washington's starter. You can believe that because Ron Rivera indicated that's how he himself is operating, or you can believe that because, like Chris Cooley, you think Haskins is simply the better QB.

If those two reasons aren't enough, though, consider this: Going with Haskins appears to line up with how Rivera has approached his first free agency and first campaign as the franchise's leader.

Like it or not, Rivera has mostly brought in low-cost players this March. Aside from pursuing and losing out on Amari Cooper, he and the front office seem content with just trying to make this roster more well-rounded and more competitive while the coach looks to establish his way of doing things in 2020.

Of course, Rivera, Kyle Smith and others would love to begin this new era of Redskins football by stringing together nine or 10 victories and making it into January. That said, they're all aware that they're assuming control of a 3-13 team and are at the start of a rebuild that may require a few seasons to really take effect.

In other words, this is the perfect time to let a 2019 first-rounder have a full year under center and in shotgun and allow both he and the organization to figure out if he can be a difference maker in the NFL.

If Haskins struggles, the Redskins should let him try to fight through those struggles. And if he continues to struggle, then they can finally turn to Allen. That scenario will in all likelihood lead to another unsightly record and put Washington in a spot to draft a premium signal caller in 2021. 

However — and this is weirdly a result that doesn't get mentioned enough — it could really pay off and set the Redskins up for major success under Rivera.

One of the top shorcuts to relevancy is having a quality passer on a cheap deal (and Haskins' deal has the potential to be really cheap through 2022). If the Redskins give Haskins 2020, he could give them much more in return.

Sure, if Allen entered this September as the guy, his chemistry with Turner and Rivera could make the Burgundy and Gold's record marginally better in the short term. That said, the Redskins' strategy in free agency doesn't indicate that they're too preoccupied with the short term. 

Overall, Allen is no scrub. In fact, he has produced more than Haskins has as a pro up to this point. Yet for Rivera and Co., what happens next matters far more than what's happened already.

If they're being patient with addressing their roster, they need to be patient with Haskins. They may one day be very thankful that they were.

MORE REDSKINS NEWS