The Redskins have found their offensive and defensive coordinators and they are ready to get on with the business portion of the offseason. The big question between now and the middle of March is how they will divvy up their $62 million in cap space. Here we’ll take a position-by-position look at the cap situation and explore some of the Redskins’ options.
Cap info via www.OverTheCap.com
The Redskins currently have four defensive linemen under contract.
— Ricky Jean Francois, 2017 cap hit $4 million, under contract through 2017
— Anthony Lanier $540,000, through 2018
—Matt Ioannidis, $540,000, through 2019
— Joey Mbu, $540,400, through 2018
— Phil Taylor, $775,000, through 2017
—A. J. Francis, $615,000, through 2018
Free agents: Chris Baker, Ziggy Hood, Cullen Jenkins, Kedric Golston
—Not much to look at as far as the current players. Nobody is up for an extension; the focus will be on signing a free agent or two and perhaps retaining some of their own.
—Looking at the positional spending here it’s easy to see how the Redskins have neglected the defensive line, especially since they don’t have a high draft pick providing quality play at a relatively low cost.
2016: $8.9 million, 31st in NFL
2017: $7.3 million, 30th in NFL
Adding and subtracting:
Francois is 30 and he played about 40 percent of the snaps on defense. He didn’t generate a ton of pass rush (1.5 sacks) but he did play well against the run. His cap number might be a shade high for his production but given the uncertainty at the position plus his positive locker room presence he is worth a bit of a premium.
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One of the intriguing storylines of the early offseason will be what the Redskins do with Baker, who clearly was their best defensive lineman. Spotrac suggests that Baker’s market value should get him a four-year deal worth $7.3 million per year. The Redskins will have to decide if they want to offer Baker, who will be 30 by around Week 4 of the coming season, a market value contract or if they will let him walk since they are essentially starting over on the D-line anyway.
Golston is the longest-tenured Redskin; his season ended in Week 2 after a torn hamstring landed him on injured reserve. He will be 34 around the time OTA’s start. “Uncle Ked” is a great locker room presence and it wouldn’t cost too much to keep him around to see what he has left in the tank. But as is the case with Baker you have to wonder if he has a place on a rebuilding line.
Hood turned 30 yesterday and Jenkins turned 36 last month. Both could be useful contributors but the Redskins again will be in trouble if they are second and fourth in snaps taken on the defensive line as Hood and Jenkins were last year, respectively.
According to one report the Redskins will target Eagles nose tackle Bennie Logan in free agency. Logan will command a contract similar to the one projected for Baker, perhaps a bit higher since he is about two years younger than Baker. Logan could provide the Redskins with a true nose tackle, a position they need to fill as Greg Manusky will continue running a 3-4 base defense.
Salary cap outlook series