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Washington Redskins Must Make Strong Push for Sidney Rice

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Washington Redskins Must Make Strong Push for Sidney Rice
John Froschauer/Associated Press

The Washington Redskins have addressed many needs so far in free agency, but there are still players they should consider targeting in these coming days. One of the bigger names that they should zero in on is Sidney Rice, the former Seattle Seahawk. Rice is the big-bodied receiver Washington's offense needs and would be a tremendous vertical threat across from Pierre Garcon.

With the addition of Andre Roberts this past week, the Redskins' receiving corps would be complete with Rice. He was sidelined for eight games with a knee injury in 2013 but is reportedly set to be cleared in April, according to Tom Pelissero of USA Today.

Given the pass-first type of offense Washington will be implementing under Jay Gruden's eye, a taller receiver who can stretch the field and be effective in the red zone would be the perfect complement to the smaller receivers that the Redskins have.

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It's clear they have to address the wide receiver position even with the Roberts signing, and they may not be able to find much value in the draft. Plus, their second-round pick may be better spent on an offensive lineman or defensive back, leaving wide receiver as an afterthought.

Their options are seemingly limited to free agency, and Rice is arguably the best receiver available. He likely wouldn't require a huge deal but would definitely be a contributor right away.

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NFL Network's Ian Rapoport (via Chris Wesseling of NFL.com) reports that his former team from the west is trying to woo him back to CenturyLink Field now that Golden Tate has signed with the Detroit Lions. Despite this, it appears as though nothing is imminent, leaving the door open for Washington to swoop in and make an offer.

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Adding Rice would undoubtedly provide a boost in the offense's production and would help rehabilitate a unit that was hurting bad last year. His contributions in the passing game would also open things up for Alfred Morris in the running game, providing balance to the Redskins' offensive game plan.

There are certainly concerns surrounding Rice's health, but Washington could add an injury clause within any proposed contract, protecting them and Rice for the long term in the process.

He's only 27 years old and could surely become a huge piece of the offense granted he can remain healthy. There is a certain level of risk with signing Rice, but given what he's shown in the past, he's worth the gamble.

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