I had just finished writing an article about trading Jason Campbell and Albert Haynesworth when I heard the news that the Washington Redskins had signed nose tackle Anthony Bryant out of free agency.
Compared with the hype surrounding the Donovan McNabb trade, this move was a snooze. The Redskins are switching to a 3-4, and they need depth on the line, so they grabbed another nose tackle.
Yet earlier in free agency, Washington also acquired the much more talented Maake Kemoeatu, former Carolina Panthers NT.
Kemoeatu, at 6'5 and 345 lbs, is more than capable of playing the nose tackle position. He played four seasons with the Baltimore Ravens before being picked up by the Panthers in 2006 free agency.
With the Panthers, he logged 36, 46, and 34 tackles in the 2008, 2007 and 2006 seasons, respectively. Kemoeatu had a tear in his Achilles' tendon which kept him out for the 2009 season.
The Redskins now have two veteran nose tackles on the roster. One could easily argue that they are just building some solid depth, but I'm curious if this move means more.
Kemoeatu's Achilles' tendon is healed, but according to reports by Jason Reid of the Washington Post, Kemo's agent is stating that it is uncertain whether he will be in on-field condition by the preseason.
Assuming that the Redskins are seeing Kemoeatu look better, and with the signing of Anthony Bryant, what are the ramifications for Haynesworth? With two veteran NTs to play the position, one who if healthy is more than adequate, Haynesworth might move to DE in the 3-4.
The question then, is whether this will make big Albert happy, and content enough to shut up and play. In the 3-4, the nose tackle and defensive ends are really the unsung heroes of the defense as they occupy offensive lineman while the linebackers make the plays. This is clearly where Albert takes issue, as he wants to be known as the best play-making defensive player in the NFL.
What I'm curious about is whether the Redskins building depth at nose tackle in order to play Haynesworth at defensive end is enough to quash all of the squabbles he and Shanahan have been having.
I'm thinking the Anthony Bryant signing might be the first indication that Haynesworth won't actually be traded.
What do you think?