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Redskins get some contract guidance with Monday deals

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Redskins get some contract guidance with Monday deals

As free agency moves into its next phase prices for players start to drop and the Redskins may have received some guidance from deals given out this morning at two positions of need.

On area they are looking is at safety. Nate Allen re-signed with the Eagles for one year. His base will be $2 million and he has a chance to earn another $1 million in incentives.

Rotoworld had Allen No. 10 in their rankings of safeties who are or were free agents this year. He has been the Eagles’ regular starting safety since they drafted him in the second round in 2010 and his performance has been up and down.

Allen’s deal sets the bar. Now, if a safety who has been inconsistent over the years wants more than $2 million per year he needs to have some good reasons why (are you listening Brandon Meriweather?).

The other deal of immediate relevance to the Redskins is right tackle Zach Strief signing to remain with the Saints. His five-year contract is for $20.5 million with $8.4 million guaranteed.

Strief is 30 and after spending five years as a reserve with an occasional start he has been the Saints’ regular starter at right tackle the past three seasons. He’s solid but not great.

Donald Penn, who is visiting the Redskins, might have a case to make more than Strief, but not a lot more. Penn has a more substantial resume with 108 starts at left tackle and a Pro Bowl nod back in 2010. But the Redskins are looking for him to play right tackle so the premium paid to play on the left side won’t apply here. The Redskins will look to pay Penn as a right tackle in his 30’s and that’s just what Strief is.

So look for the Redskins to offer Penn perhaps a bit more than Strief got—five years, $22 million with $9 million guaranteed. We don’t have the details on Strief’s contract but it’s a pretty good bet the Saints will be able to get out of the deal with relatively little cap pain in two or three years. The same is likely to apply to Penn’s deal.

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Redskins plan to 'spy' Cardinals' David Johnson with rookie Su'a Cravens, per source

Redskins plan to 'spy' Cardinals' David Johnson with rookie Su'a Cravens, per source

Facing one of the NFL's best running backs in Arizona's David Johnson, the Redskins plan to use rookie linebacker Su'a Cravens as a spy in nickel coverage to slow down the Cardinals' threat, per a source close to the team.

Johnson ranks third in the NFL with 921 rushing yards, but it's the variety of ways the Arizona offense uses their second-year running back that makes him so difficult to handle for opposing defenses. Johnson also has 55 catches for 613 yards, and that's just through 11 games.

Cravens comes into the game with momentum as perhaps the Redskins most dynamic defensive threat. With size to play linebacker and enough speed to play coverage, the 6-foot-1, 220 lbs. rookie out of USC will be put in a tough position covering Johnson. The reality of his assignment is to try and contain Johnson as the Cardinals offense is so reliant on the runner that he will get a number of chances.

In their last two games, Johnson has gone for more than 150 total yards in each contest and scored multiple touchdowns. For his part, Cravens has proved a playmaker in his rookie season. To go with 29 tackles in nine games, his stat sheet has sacks and an interception listed.

Getting to Carson Palmer is the best path for the Redskins defense - especially considering the Cardinals' offensive line woes - but using Cravens to try and limit Johnson is a smart course of action for the 'Skins.

One member of the Washington defense explained that Johnson is "going to make plays" but that the key is to limit the damage. If the running back catches a ball out of the backfield, Joe Barry's defense will be focused on making a stop after a five-yard gain, instead of a 20-yard gain.

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Redskins vs. Cardinals inactives: Reed out as expected

Redskins vs. Cardinals inactives: Reed out as expected

GLENDALE, AZ—As expected, the Redskins will be without star tight end Jordan Reed today against the Cardinals.

He is inactive due to a third-degree AC joint sprain in his left shoulder.

Reed gutted it out and played the second half on Thanksgiving Day in Dallas after being injured in the first but during the week he didn’t practice at all couldn’t regain the range of motion needed to play today.

Coach Jay Gruden said on Friday that the team is planning on having Reed play next week against the Eagles.

For this week, Vernon Davis will step into the starting role.

Also inactive is reserve defensive lineman Anthony Lanier, who was kicked in the lower leg in Dallas. Gruden said that the swelling was still too severe for him to be able to play.

LIVE BLOG: WEEK 13 REDSKINS VS. CARDINALS

The Redskins’ other inactive players today:

  • QB Nate Sudfeld
  • DL AJ Francis
  • RB Matt Jones
  • WR Rashad Ross
  • DB Dashaun Phillips