As once-bright-star cornerback DeAngelo Hall was on his way out of Oakland, he didn't have a lot to say. But he did say this:
“This is a blessing,” Hall told NFL.com’s Steve Wyche. “I have learned it’s not all about the money. I’ve learned now it’s more about the team. Ain’t all money good money. I took the bait. I went for the money and I didn’t research the situation. But I don’t think I would trade this for the world. Just to meet (owner) Al Davis, to get to pick his brain, to know the kind of person he is and the impression he had on football is good for me to say that I know him.”
Hmmm...Sounds like the Washington Redskins could fit that bill. The 'Skins aren't exactly hurting for corners, true, but they are hurting for a reliable punt returner, and if Shawn Springs continues his injury issues, depth at the corner could become a real concern.
With Carlos Rogers playing at a Pro Bowl level (sans the interceptions), Hall would make a Redskins' defense a rather imposing force. Quality corners would go four deep with Hall on the roster, easily giving them the deepest, most talented, highest-quality secondary in the NFL.
Hall's skills as a punt returner, however, are perhaps even more valuable at this point for the Redskins. Yes, Santana Moss returned a punt for a touchdown only two weeks ago, but that was the ONLY bright spot in an otherwise dreadful punting season for the Redskins.
Antwan Randle El has been the full-time punt returner since he was signed over two years ago, but his numbers have trailed off consistently since his arrival. He is being used more at wide receiver with the Redskins than he ever was with Pittsburgh, and that may be what has slowed him down in the return game.
Whatever the case, Randle El has been largely ineffective, and considering the fact that the Redskins are ranked FIRST in the NFL in total punt returns with 29 (a beautiful reflection of just how good the Redskins' defense really is), punt returning could well be considered a key to the Redskins offensive struggles.
While they force more punts than any other team in the NFL, they are only 21st in average return yardage and have one of the worst average starting field position in the NFL.
I say it's easily worth a veteran minimum contract for one of the NFL's premier cornerbacks and punt returners. Head Coach Jim Zorn, Defensive Coordinator Greg Blache, and Special-Teams Coach Danny Smith can surely determine whether or not they feel he will "infect" the Redskins' "character," which seems to be very strong.
If he signs on Friday, he can be at practice on Monday, and play against the Dallas Cowboys next Sunday night.
Sounds good to me!
How about you?!
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!