Washington Redskins: What the Tight End Corps May Look Like in 2013

Korey Beckett@@KoreyBeckettBRContributor IIINovember 27, 2012

NASHVILLE, TN - OCTOBER 28: Jared Cook #89 of the Tennessee Titans runs with a catch against Jerraud Powers #25 of the Indianapolis Colts at LP Field on October 28, 2012 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

If there's one position on the Washington Redskins' roster that hasn't suffered a large negative impact from a starter being injured, it's at tight end.

Ever since Fred Davis went down with a season-ending injury in the team's first date with the Giants, two young players have stepped in nicely in the form of Logan Paulsen and Niles Paul.

Due to their emergence, Washington has to be questioning whether or not keeping the expensive Davis (who was designated with the franchise tag prior to the season) will make sense money-wise in a 2013 season where they will suffer a substantial cap penalty (which I still don't agree with).

Let's assume that the Redskins aren't going to give Davis the big money that he's after. Niles Paul is the only tight end guaranteed to be under contract in 2013 for just $550,000.

Logan Paulsen will be a restricted free agent that is currently making $540,000 but will obviously demand a bit more after the solid season he is having.

He still won't be trying to fetch the kind of money that Davis likely will in the coming offseason, but the team will be looking to cut money any way that they can.

I don't believe that the next five games (hopefully more in the postseason) will be Logan Paulsen's last in Washington, but you always have to have a contingency plan.

If Paulsen gets an offer he can't refuse (and the Redskins can't match), the possibilities for a replacement are unfortunately limited.

If the Redskins want to stretch every penny to the max, though, or find a way to sign whomever they want and avoid a large cap hit (which they seem to be good at), there's definitely talent available at the tight end position.

The best tight end going into the free agent market will be current Tennessee Titan Jared Cook who has hauled in three touchdowns and 452 yards this season. He's only making $615,000 and will certainly want more after a productive season, but at the right price he would be a huge addition.

The other tight ends of note would be Dustin Keller and Delanie Walker. Keller (of the Jets) is being overpaid at more than $3 million with stats similar to Paulsen's. Walker (49ers) is making just over $1 million but hasn't put up significant numbers with Vernon Davis lining up opposite of him.

Now a three headed attack of Cook, Paulsen and Paul sounds nice, but it would be hard to both keep Paulsen and acquire Cook.

What about the draft? Well, if you are looking for a player that will be high-impact at the tight end position in 2013, the Redskins won't be able to get it.

Tyler Eifert (Notre Dame) appears to be the only big play tight end in the draft and will be off the board well before the Redskins pick in what fans are now hoping will be the late second round.

Zach Ertz from Stanford may be available for the Redskins to select, but with a severe need for depth in the secondary, it's unlikely they would go that route in the second round.

I would like to see Fred Davis back but with the possibility of that dwindling each week, Jared Cook is on the top of the wish list. Of course, this is all subject to change if the Redskins slash enough cap room around the rest of the depth chart.

It is the Redskins, after all. It wouldn't be a surprise.

Korey Beckett is a Featured Columnist on Bleacher Report for the Washington Redskins and Fantasy Football. He can be contacted at koreydbeckett@gmail.com or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/koreybeckettBR and follow on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/koreybeckettBR