The Redskins announced that they have signed LB Khairi Fortt, LB Pete Robertson, and DL Phil Taylor to reserve/futures contracts. The big name on that list, both literally and figuratively, is Taylor.
Taylor, who is listed at 6-3, 337, was a first-round pick of the Browns back in 2011, the 21st overall selection out of Baylor. Due to injuries and ineffectiveness he never lived up to his draft position. In four seasons in Cleveland he played in 44 of a possible 64 games, starting 42. He posted seven sacks and 69 tackles.
The Browns released him prior to the start of the 2015 season. He was out of football that year and signed with the Broncos in February of 2016. His career in Denver was very short lived as he suffered a knee injury early in training camp and was released with an injury settlement. Taylor did not play in 2016.
Right now, the Redskins are looking at Taylor, who turns 29 in April, as a player who will compete for a roster spot and provide some depth if he makes it. Taylor's injury problems have mostly dealt with his knees and that is something that will be monitored closely. His presence will not affect any plans to acquire top-line talent for the defensive line in free agency or in the draft.
But sometimes things work out differently. Around this time a year ago the Redskins signed Ziggy Hood, another former first-round pick, to a reserve/futures contract. The plan was for him was similar to the one for Taylor, to compete for a roster spot and provide depth. But after the release of Stephen Paea and an injury to Kedric Golston, Hood ended up starting 14 games.
The Redskins hope to acquire enough top-line talent to make sure that if Taylor does end up making the team he will be in a supporting role, not a featured role.
Fortt was a fourth-round pick of the Saints in 2014 but his NFL resume shows just three games played for the Jaguars that year. Robertson, from Texas Tech was not selected in last year’s draft. He signed with the Seahawks but he did not play in 2016.