What Pat White in Washington Really Means for the Redskins
With barely a ripple made in free agency so far this offseason, the Washington Redskins signed a guy who has been out of football since 2009, and the entire town immediately went berserk.
Perhaps that's the way it goes with such a small sample size of potential reaction.
When the Redskins announced they had signed quarterback Pat White on Wednesday, people immediately took to social media and airwaves to make hasty assumptions about Robert Griffin III, his backup Kirk Cousins and the veteran clipboard-holder Rex Grossman.
What on Earth are the Redskins doing here?!
It's quite simple, really. After Griffin suffered that deplorable knee injury at the end of last season, the Redskins were in need of an athletic quarterback with experience in the read-option scheme. They needed an RG3 stunt double and didn't have any coin to go shopping.
While it's nice to hear that Griffin's making a speedy recovery, and all signs point to him being ready by Week 1, that doesn't mean the 2012 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year will be full speed by the start of camp.
In the meantime, the Redskins need a guy who can come in and take reps, offer athletic ability similar to Griffin's and keep the defense sharp with comparable speed.
During his four seasons at West Virginia University between 2005 and 2008, White served as one of the nation's most threatening offensive weapons, breaking numerous school and NCAA records.
The Dolphins eventually released White in early September of 2010. He then gave the United Football League a try, signing with the Virginia Destroyers in June 2011. He was cut just two months later.
If you're of the betting nature, I'd say safe money is on White never suiting up for a regular-season game.
If Griffin isn't ready by the start of the season, second-year man Kirk Cousins will get the starting nod. And after Cousins, the fan-not-so-favorite Grossman would assume duties, as the 10-year veteran recently agreed to terms on a one-year deal to return next season.
Although it's easy—maybe even a little fun—to take this whole Pat White signing and turn it into a speculative roster move, anyone doing so would be barking up the wrong tree.
In the end, it's a deal that worked great for all parties involved.
White earns the right of a camp body. He's 27 years old and probably believes he has plenty left in the tank. Washington is giving him a shot at possible career resurrection.
And the Redskins get an athletically gifted quarterback with experience running the read-option and comparable speed to that of their starter—all for pocket change.
For now, White comes in as the stuntman and helps keep the rest of the team sharp and on cue. If he happens to impress coaches, that's a bridge the Redskins front office can cross later.
The town reaction is understandable. When the Redskins aren't acting as they did four years ago and treating the offseason like the Wild Wild West, we're all guilty of scratching for storylines.
But in the case of Pat White, it's just not there.
In fact, I'm still convinced the only reason the Redskins went after White was to get a little bit of this on the sidelines during minicamps.
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