By Ben Standig
Now that salary cap-gate is over, what's next for the Redskins 53-man roster. According to Rich Tandler - and without factoring in potential savings by cutting certain veterans - there is around $3.8 million left to play with, some of which goes toward signing the remaining draft picks.
So, what should the Shanahan's do with that remaining coin? Considering the free agent options remaining are your rank and file types, there are few must-have players. Regardless, you never know what happens between now and the start of training camp and the regular season. That is why we're compiling this list of the viable and rainy day options among remaining NFL free agents.
Based on Tandler's recent depth chart analysis, the only positions likely in play are the deep reserves at end - especially if five are kept - and nose tackle where 2011 seventh round pick Chris Neild backs up Barry Cofield. Should there be a need for more training camp depth or injuries strike, here are some of the names the Redskins could be calling on. In this area, those cut before or during training camp might will dramatically bolster the free agent pool.
Andre Carter: The former Redskin pass rusher had a resurgent campaign with the Patriots last season, posting 10 sacks in 14 games before suffering a torn quad. Reports suggest the 33-year-old will be "ready to practice full speed in training camp." There is also a belief the Patriots are open to bringing Carter back. It would be a stunner to see Carter, never a good fit in a 3-4 scheme, return to D.C. "It was no surprise to see Carter thrive in the 4-3 again," the minds at Walter Football wrote, "which makes you wonder why the Redskins installed a 3-4." Let's move on.
Aubrayo Franklin: The 31-year-old nose tackle was slapped with the 49ers franchise tag in 2010. After a downer of a season with the Saints in 2011, he now falls into the secondary free agent market. Like Cofield, Franklin is not the most massive of nose tackles (317 pounds), but he has played 16 games in four straight seasons.
Marcus Thomas: Reportedly was seeking a long-term deal from the Broncos, but so far Denver has not given in to the 26-year-old tackle. The 2007 fourth-round pick started 11 games last season, finishing with 30 tackles.Would likely move outside in a 3-4.
Rocky Bernard: With only one start over the past three seasons at defensive tackle for the Giants, adding the 33-year-old would be a pure depth play.
Kelly Gregg: Another true veteran of the trenches, the former Ravens mauler still was a force against the run at times last season for the Chiefs. Turns 36 in November.
Fred Robbins: Played his career primarily as a 4-3 defensive tackle. At 35, Robbins is obviously much closer to the end than the beginning of his career, but notched six sacks in 2010.
Others: Wallace Gilberry, Tim Bulman, Jovan Haye
And yes, Albert Haynesworth is available...