Bills safety Jairus Byrd is at or near the top of most fee agent rankings and after Buffalo decided not to give him the franchise tag, many have been wondering who would pursue him and how much money he would be looking for.
We have a partial answer to the former question and the answer to the second is not particularly surprising.
ESPN.com is reporting that Byrd is seeking an average annual salary of $9 million. That would make him the second-highest paid safety in the game, just behind Eric Berry of the Chiefs. It was widely expected that he would try to become one of the top-paid safeties in the game so this report confirms that.
Among the teams said to be interested in Byrd are the Dolphins and Rams and, according to the Washington Post, the Redskins.
The Redskins certainly do have a need at safety as both of last year’s starters are free agents and the backups who are on the roster have not shown that they are capable of starting. But $9 million per year would be tough for a team with about $22 million in salary cap room and a lot of needs to fill.
It’s possible that with Byrd and with Patriots cornerback Aqib Talib, who also is looking for a salary in the $9 to $10 million range, the Redskins are not in the bidding at the current asking price. They may just want to be in the game if the prices should drop. If Byrd doesn’t get what he’s looking for and if he doesn’t his contract could come down to a level where he would represent a good value.
As the process unfolds, don’t take whatever you hear at face value. “Interest” does not mean “pay whatever it takes to get the guy”.
Oh, and most importantly: Believe what you see and not what you hear.
Redskins receiver Pierre Garcon just filled out his ballot for the annual NFL Top 100 Players list.
Let's just say it's pretty one-dimensional.
As you can see, the form asks guys to rank who they consider the top 20 players in the league. But instead of naming 20 different players, Garcon voted for the same player 20 times. Talk about stuffing the ballot box.
No surprise, but he's hyping his quarterback Kirk Cousins.
Cousins is having a career year with the Redskins. His stock has soared over the last three weeks especially. Take a look at his numbers in that span: 84 completions on 116 attempts for 1,086 yards (72 percent), eight touchdowns and zero interceptions.
Those efforts earned the Michigan State product NFC Offensive Player of the Month honors. And more importantly, Cousins has the Redskins in favorable position to make the playoffs for the second year in a row.
So far this season, Garcon has caught 52 passes from Cousins for 636 yards and two scores.
MORE REDSKINS: Reed out, 7 other Redskins questionable
The Redskins made a couple of roster moves just before departing for Arizona to play the Cardinals.
They signed cornerback Dashaun Phillips from the practice squad and cut offensive tackle Blaine Clausell. The Redskins also waived safety David Bruton Jr. off of injured reserve.
Phillips was the Redskins’ nickel corner for the first three games of the season, and he made four tackles and recovered a fumble. But they moved rookie Kendall Fuller up into the slot corner role in Week 4 and Phillips spent several weeks on the inactive list before being waived on November 12 and added to the practice squad three days later.
The moves became known after Redskins coach Jay Gruden had spoken to the media for the day so we can only speculate as to the reasoning behind them. Actually, the release of Clausell isn’t hard to figure out. He was signed after Trent Williams started his four-game suspension and with Williams set to return on Monday and the other options at backup tackle healthy there was no point in keeping him around.
Phillips is likely going to Arizona as an insurance policy. The Cardinals like to spread the field with a lot of wide receivers. They will want to have five cornerbacks active. They do have Josh Norman, Bashaud Breeland, Fuller, Quinton Dunbar, and Greg Toler. But Breeland is listed as questionable with an ankle injury and they Redskins don’t want to take any chance of being caught short-handed at cornerback if he suffers a setback. That’s especially true when they don’t need to bring an extra tackle along.
Depending on how things shake out injury-wise against the Cardinals there is a good chance that we could see Phillips on the waiver wire once again as a roster spot will be needed for Williams.
Bruton started the first four games of the season at safety before going on injured reserve with a concussion. This past offseason he signed a three-year, $9 million free agent contract with $3.4 million full guaranteed. There will be a deal cap hit of approximately $1.7 million in 2017 to account for the prorated bonus.