Rich Tandler’s five items possibly related to the Washington Redskins and other matters.
5. So now this bounty story has come to the point where any time a former player talks about being given cash for making a play on the football field constitutes an event worthy of a news item. Gregg Williams and the Saints are not in trouble for passing out hundred dollar bills for interceptions, sacks, or even big hits. They are in trouble because they rewarded players for injuring other players. Bottom line, if and when someone has a story that has Joe Gibbs approving of payments for injuring players on the other team, wake me up. Until then, spare me.
4. I laugh at reports that players are moving up and down draft boards in March. At least 95 percent of the evaluation is based on game film. These guys haven’t played football in months, how can opinions of them be changing so dramatically? I think that one of those mid-round guys whose last college game was in late November and who is “racing up the draft boards” should consider not playing football for another year. Perhaps he could shoot up the boards so high he’d be the No. 1 pick in 2013.
3. The pace of free agent players re-signing with their current teams has been slow. That is because there has not been a normal free agent period in three years. Two years ago most prime players were ineligible for free agency because the CBA rules changed and players had to have six years of experience to be unrestricted free agents instead of four. The lockout in 2011 made for a speed-dating period that didn’t give the market much of a chance to sort itself out. So in 2012, nobody really knows what market value for a player is. Agents are hesitant to sign their clients back up with their teams before getting bids from other teams for fear of watching the market shoot up. Teams have the same fear of the unknown and they are, of course, fearful of overpaying players if they sign early. Things are going to get crazy starting Tuesday at 4 p.m.
2. Tim Hightower is one of those players who might have been signed by now under normal circumstances. He still is unsigned and it will be interesting to see what happens if that still is the case when free agency starts. Both sides expressed a desire to have Hightower return but the Redskins may want to see if they can find another back, one who didn’t suffer a torn ACL last October.
1. The Redskins could have a tough time fixing the problem at right tackle. It is hard to imagine that Jammal Brown’s health won’t be an issue and while Willie Smith could be a solid starter one day, that day probably is not on the calendar in 2012. The free agent market doesn’t contain many long-term solutions and a trade for the rights of Robert Griffin III could leave the Redskins without the draft firepower to find a starter in April. I wonder if the Redskins will look at signing a veteran like the Giants’ Kareem McKenzie. He is 35 and he obviously would be around for only a year or two but that might be enough time for Smith to be ready to take over or for the free agent or draft markets to become more favorable.