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Offseason review: Safeties allowed to walk

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Offseason review: Safeties allowed to walk

While the offseason has another month to go, its safe to say that offseason personnel and coaching moves are pretty much over. There might be a minor trade or a waiver wire pickup here or there but the cake is mostly baked.So before training camp starts, lets take a look back at the five biggest moves of the offseason. Well count them down in order of how important they were. Earlier, we looked at the hiring of Raheem Morris. Here we look at some personnel decisions they made with some existing players.LaRon Landry was a top ten draft pick in 2007 and midway through the 2010 season it looked like signing him when his contract was up after the 2011 season would be a high priority. Injuries and disagreement between the player and the club on how to treat those injuries changed all of that. Landrys contract expired at the start of free agency on March 13 without the two sides having any serious talks about a new deal.The Redskins signed O. J. Atogwe to team up with Landry to give them what they thought would be one of the better safety tandems in the league for the next few seasons. Injuries derailed his season and the Redskins decided not to bet the 4 million they were slated to pay him in 2012 that he would stay healthy this year.It is possible that the Redskins were on the fence about keeping Atogwe when they were blindsided by the NFLs 36 million cap penalty and then decided to cut bait. It was thought that the penalty, 18 million of which had to be take this year, might force the Redskins to jettison some high-priced veterans in order to stay under the cap.Among those who were thought to be in jeopardy were Chris Cooley and Santana Moss, who carry 2012 salaries of 3.8 million and 2.6 million respectively. Cooley was already a backup with the emergence of Fred Davis and Moss got pushed further down the down the depth chart when the Redskins signed Pierre Garon and Josh Morgan. But with training camp starting next month, both have remained on the roster.With their available salary cap dollars reduced, the Redskins found themselves with only two safeties with NFL experience on their roster. While DeJon Gomes and Reed Doughty both started some games, neither is the caliber player you want to rely on for 16 games.However, with the cap constraints and a weak free agent market at the position, the Redskins had to make do with who they could sign. Brandon Meriweather joined his third team in seven months when the Redskins signed him on March 15. In mid-April the Bucs released Tanard Jackson, whose career had been disrupted by injuries and substance abuse related suspensions. The Redskins signed him a few days later. The 30-year-old Madieu Williams signed on April 10.While Jim Hasletts defense will have to make do with a bargain basement group of safeties, Kyle Shanahan, at least to this point, has some high-priced depth to rely on to help Robert Griffin III adjust to life in the NFL.Over the last couple of years, Hasletts has benefitted from having a lot of draft picks and free agent dollars sent in the direction of his unit so its hard for him to cry foul. But we will see if gambling on a low-cost safety unit pays off.

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Stephen A. Smith and ESPN's 'First Take' are coming to Redskins camp

Stephen A. Smith and ESPN's 'First Take' are coming to Redskins camp

Because of Richmond's weather, the Redskins aren't going to want any additional heat during training camp. More will be coming their way next week, though.

Stephen A. Smith and ESPN's First Take will be filming live from the Bon Secours training center on Thursday, Aug. 4, according to a report from the Richmond Times-Dispatch. Smith and his fiery takes will be joined in Virginia by his co-host Max Kellerman, as well as former Redskins safety Ryan Clark, starting at 10 a.m. and ending at noon.

Smith, of course, has been a fixture on the program, while Kellerman just recently stepped in for Skip Bayless (if both Smith and Bayless were heading to Richmond, the players might have melted as a result of the scalding conversations the two were known to have). Perhaps Kellerman could solicit some advice from Kirk Cousins on how to succeed in a new job, since the 'Skins quarterback did so well when he was promoted in 2015.

For fans wanting to check out the show themselves, gates will be opening that day at 9:30 in the morning.

RELATED: THREE REDSKINS PLAY SOCCER BEFORE PRACTICE THURSDAY

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Before football, Josh Norman and others got in a little futbol on Thursday

Before football, Josh Norman and others got in a little futbol on Thursday

To watch a group of Redskins kick around a soccer ball — not effortlessly, but definitely decently — watch the video above.

With the U.S. Men's National Team constantly looking for goal scorers, a potentially prolific trio just put their first piece of film together on Thursday: Duke Ihenacho, Logan Paulsen and Josh Norman.

On paper, a burly tight end and a pair of defensive backs don't exactly sound like an ideal fit for the pitch, but the three made it work in Richmond before they took the field for the beginning of Redskins' training camp. Thankfully, CSN's cameras were there to capture the performance.

Of the players, Ihenacho displayed the most enthusiasm but Paulsen, surprisingly, had the cleanest touch. Norman, meanwhile, came in at the end of the sequence and looked quite capable as well. Overall, for guys used to football and not futbol, it was a pretty solid showing.

Your move, Jurgen Klinsmann.

RELATED: GRUDEN TELLS DOCTSON TO BE PATIENT, BUT HURRY UP, TOO

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Gruden gives timeline for Perry Riley, Shawn Lauvao return from injury

Gruden gives timeline for Perry Riley, Shawn Lauvao return from injury

The Redskins are missing two key cogs right now to injury: LG Shawn Lauvao and LB Perry Riley. Jay Gruden thinks he knows when both players will be back. 

Of Lauvao, Gruden said he does not have a lot of conerns and expects his left guard back soon. 

"I think he’s really, really close," Gruden said. "I'd be shocked if he wasn’t ready by Saturday, or as early as Monday."

RELATED: RANKING THE REDSKINS — WHO'S AT THE TOP?

Lauvao has voiced that he thinks he's ready to be back on the field, but Gruden said the team wants to be sure their guard is confident in changing directions and exploding on his surgically repaired ankle.

"We just want to make sure he's solid and sound before he gets back out there."

Gruden gave a similar prognosis for linebacker Perry Riley. 

"He feels like we're holding him back," Gruden said of Riley. "He wants to practice."

Riley's situation is a bit different than Lauvao. When the guard returns, he comes back as the starter. When Riley returns, he will be competing with Will Compton and Mason Foster, a duo that played well last season once Riley went down.

For now, the coach just wants to make sure Riley can go at full speed for a few days without soreness before letting him back on the practice field. 

"We want to put him through the drills, look at him run around, make sure he can do it," Gruden said. "His strength is his ability to run laterally, side to side."

RELATED: GRUDEN PREACHES PATIENCE FOR DOCTSON, BUT SAYS HURRY UP, TOO