Patience is a virtue. For the Washington Redskins, patience is what this offseason has been all about.
After trading away much of their 2013 draft in acquiring Robert Griffin III last year, the Redskins weren’t expected to make a big splash in late April. With only two picks in the top 100 and no first-round selection, Washington would walk away from the draft with a solid class with considerable upside, but very little to be overly excited about.
But just as Washington was without many options in the draft, it also had a difficult salary cap situation to deal with following the NFL’s ruling to strip the team of $36 million in cap space over the last two seasons. As reported by Rich Campbell of the Washington Times, the Redskins currently have just $1.4 million in salary cap space following offseason dealings.
As a result of their cap situation, the Redskins didn’t make many big moves in free agency. General manager Bruce Allen kept things in-house for the most part, re-signing players like cornerback DeAngelo Hall and tight end Fred Davis to facilitate as much continuity as possible following a successful 2012 campaign.
Again, patience has been key. Allen would have probably loved to make some additional signings to build on last year’s success, but it simply wasn’t in the cards.
Still, the Redskins are in position to make even bigger strides in 2013. Provided Griffin can make a full recovery from surgery to repair his ACL and LCL to take the helm from Week 1 this season, there’s no reason to believe Washington can’t top its 10-win mark of a season ago.
With the league’s best rushing attack in place—headed by Alfred Morris and his 1,613-yard rookie campaign—and an explosive dual-threat quarterback in Griffin, Washington won’t have problems scoring points this season. The biggest question mark, however, is the team’s defense.
The Redskins fielded the No. 28 defense in the NFL in 2012—a unit that surrendered 377.7 yards and 24.3 points per game. Without the ability to make many impactful defensive signings this offseason, that defense will have a lot of questions to answer in 2013.
Allen did what he could in the draft to augment some of those issues, though. Four of the Redskins’ seven selections went toward defensive players, including Washington’s second-round selection in cornerback David Amerson and fourth-round safety Phillip Thomas.
We’ll take a closer look at the Redskins’ 2013 draft class, as well as some additional offseason dealings and positions to watch as the 2013 season draws near.