Bruce Allen: Redskins will ‘be active in free agency’


(Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)

That the Redskins will have financial flexibility this offseason after two years of cap penalties is not news. My pal John Keim wrote about it earlier this week.

The salary-cap penalty is gone. And that means the Redskins will be able to spend — money has never helped them win a title, but it will enable them to rebuild their defense. They’ll have approximately $30 million in salary-cap space; of course, they’ll need to spend a decent amount to fill out their defense since six players who started at least seven games are free agents. But the Redskins can be active.

Still, it’s different when the GM says those same words, which he did Wednesday during an appearance on SiriusXM NFL Radio with Jim Miller and Pat Kirwan.

“We’ll have some room,” Washington GM Bruce Allen said. “We’re gonna have some room to do some things. But we have some players who are free agents, and we’re going to talk to them first, to try to retain them. But we have the ability to maneuver around, and we’ll be active in free agency.”

Then Allen was asked about the prospect of making a quick turnaround, something that seems to happen so frequently in today’s NFL.

“You know, Atlanta’s coaching this game here at the Senior Bowl, and last year they were a few minutes away from being in the Super Bowl,” Allen said “So things do change in the NFL, and they can change quickly. The Saints example, I think, is a great testament to coaching. It shows you what leadership, and losing Coach [Sean] Payton did for them for a year. We feel good about where we’re going. I think we’ll be healthier in a lot of areas heading into the offseason. But the key is, we’ve just got to keep working every day to get better.”

More from Allen.

On picking Jay Gruden: “His track record prior to joining the Bengals was impressive. And the fact that he had head-coaching experience, even though it wasn’t in the NFL, I think it helped him present himself as an organizational mind. His Cincinnati learning experience was great, because the way the Bengals did it with Marvin [Lewis], is they inserted [Gruden] in as offensive coordinator and kept the whole staff around. And the progress they made on offense with a young quarterback was very impressive. And then his personality fit into what we were looking to add to our team.”

On Gruden working with RGIII: “The way Jay phrased it was I don’t know where his ceiling is. A lot of players, you visualize what they can be in your organization and what they can be as a pro. He’s very impressed with all of his talents. He got to meet him. He’s impressed with the mind. And we’re happy with Robert’s work ethic. He’s a great young man who needs an offseason program, working in our new offense, but I think his future’s very bright. And as Jay says, we don’t know where his ceiling is.”

On finding Alfred Morris: “You know, that’s a great story. I don’t know if you were here at the beginning of [Senior Bowl] practice today when they made the announcement of the new additions, and I was telling A.J. Smith, who was sitting with me, I said imagine that, a few years ago they announced Alfred Morris came in, and fortunately they announced him as a fullback. And there’s not that many teams that use a fullback. And we got to know him a little bit, and were very fortunate to get him in the sixth round. Now he’s in Hawaii.”

Dan Steinberg writes about all things DC sports at the DC Sports Bog.
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