Are the Washington Redskins Getting Smarter?

Rich TandlerSenior Analyst IMarch 1, 2008

What did Vinny say?

"We're being smart," Cerrato said. "We're not just going out there and throwing money around.”

Say what?

The irony here is that the Redskins have been the kings shoveling out the long green. In three of the past five years (2003, 2004, 2006) they hit the market early and often. Some of the players scooped up in these frenzies have become the team’s mainstays, players like Marcus Washington, Shawn Springs, Randy Thomas, and Andre Carter.

Dan Snyder’s strategy was to get them into Redskins Park and pile up the stacks of Benjamins until they would sign on the line.

But that was then and this is now.

Or, if you want to take Cerrato’s analysis of it, that was dumb and this is smart.

As of Saturday night, no free agents have joined the Redskins from another team. Their first visit, with safety Will Demps of the Texans, a decent player but hardly a big name, will take place next week.

We will see if Snyder and Cerrato can say smart or if the continued presence of the likes of Lance Briggs on the free agent market is sufficient to make them drop enough IQ points to make a play.

The Redskins may be doing some shopping in the scratch and dent area of the free agency store. Media reports have linked them to Jevon Kearse, the DE cut by the Eagles and Javon Walker, WR just released by the Broncos.

Both have been superb performers at times and both have serious questions about the health of their knees. They could both be good additions depending on the answers to the big three questions:

How much?

How much guaranteed?

How long?

With the right answers—the smart answers—to those questions, the Redskins might have a good player or two with minimal risk.

It’s unlikely that it will happen as some of those teams who have been smart in the past will have a bit more money with which to gamble.

If the Redskins can keep on the smart road for a couple more years, they might be there, too.

You can reach Rich Tandler by email at richDOTtandlerATgmailDOTcom.