The Mailbag: Rogers, Landry the ones that got away?


LaRon Landry breaks up a fourth-quarter pass intended for Doug Baldwin in a 2011 game. Landry has since made a Pro Bowl with the Jets and signed a free-agent deal with the Colts. (John McDonnell/The Washington Post)

It’s hard to believe that only 2½ weeks remain before the Redskins report for training camp, but the countdown definitely is on, and before you know it, Redskins football will be back in full force.

We’ve got another issue of The Mailbag here for you, but first, I wanted to pass along a note from a reader, clearing up some information on a Richmond landmark that I passed on from Wes McElroy in last week’s installment.

From Rick400: In “The Mailbag: RGIII and the PUP List, training camp fan experience and more …,” you state: Go inside the famous Jefferson Hotel, which was used for part of Gone with the Wind.

It was not used in the film. According to the Jefferson Hotel website, some believe it was a model for the one featured in the Atlanta Mansion – a movie set. According to the Hotel’s concierge: the author of the novel, Margaret Mitchell, stayed at the Jefferson during the time she was writing the book, thus the description and portrayal of the staircase in her novel is said to be inspired by the one in the hotel.

This has been an urban legend for a long time. Now D.C. football fans will continue the legend.

Sorry,

Rick

Thanks to Rick for clearing that up. So, you can still go check out the Jefferson Hotel. Just understand that it was a source of inspiration, not an actual movie-filming site.

And now we dig into the mailbag. Thanks again for taking part. Enjoy!

Why isn’t anyone inclined to admit that maybe we regret letting LaRon Landry and Carlos Rogers go? Hindsight is 20/20, sure, but our secondary is full of question marks and it feels like those two could’ve been a couple answers. Is this a clear “d’oh!”, or would you stand by those decisions if you were the GM?

– Adam Gendell

Anquan Boldin, Carlos Rogers
Carlos Rogers pushes Anquan Boldin out of bounds in this past year’s Super Bowl. (Dave Martin/Associated Press)

Letting Rogers depart via free agency following the 2010 season might have been the bigger mistake of the two. He was the team’s most solid cover corner and a pretty decent tackler. He couldn’t hang onto the ball for interceptions to save his life, but started doing that once he got to San Francisco. (Here are his stats; He has seven in two seasons) Landry was a different situation. Signing him would have been a much bigger roll of the dice. He was coming off of back-to-back seasons that were shortened by Achilles’ tendon injuries, and he had opted against doctors’ advice that he have surgery on it. The Redskins couldn’t give him the money he sought with so much uncertainty lingering. Now, of course he went out and had a Pro Bowl season for the Jets, and then got a pretty decent pay day from Indianapolis this past offseason, and that was impossible to predict. But, the Redskins can’t look back. That’s how it is. You win some, you lose some. Josh Wilson was a good pickup at cornerback, and although it would’ve been nice to have Rogers, Wilson and Hall together, that’s over now. The team has some young prospects at corner following the drafting of David Amerson this past April and Richard Crawford last season. If Brandon Meriweather (Landry’s intended replacement) can’t shake the injury bug, then the hope is that they have two young safeties in Phillip Thomas and Bacarri Rambo that can develop into playmakers for years to come.

I followed Eric Kettani when he played at the U.S. Naval Academy. Some real positive comments about his character etc. before OTAs, but no further evaluation. Do you see a fit for him behind Darrel Young, but primarily a special teams player? 

 – Pete Dickerson

It’s going to be interesting to see where Kettani fits into the equation, because the Redskins have basically gone with only one fullback the past two years. (In 2011, they had Young, and converted long-time fullback Mike Sellers to a tight end. Last season, Young was the only fullback on the roster. Logan Paulsen filled in some in a pinch. This year, the Redskins have Young, whom they re-signed over the offseason, and a crowded tight end position with Fred Davis and Paulsen both re-signed, Niles Paul entering his second season at that position, and rookie Jordan Reed also in the mix. Kettani could have a hard time cracking the 53-man roster, but we’ll see how things play out during training camp and the preseason.

An online report by Bleacher Report columnist John Bibb had this to say about London Fletcher and his play, “Although he led the team in tackles last season, opposing offensives are creating one-on-one scenarios that mismatch one of the oldest players in the NFL with tight ends and running backs nearly half his age.” Do you think the Skins’ coaching staff put things like that into consideration when game planning this season?

– Olufemi A. Adepoju

I would agree with the notion that Fletcher did find himself in mismatches at times as he was asked to cover younger, taller, faster tight ends downfield. But you can bet that if fans and reporters have observed this, then the Redskins coaches definitely have as well and are planning for ways to help compensate for this, whether in the form of giving him some help downfield, or using a safety to pick up those tight ends in some of those situations.

Would it be plausible to sign Eric Winston for the $900,000 mark this year with elevators for following years and objective bonuses this year? He seems to be a huge upgrade over Jeremy Trueblood and Tony Pashos, and isn’t he suited to a zone blocking scheme?

 – Josh Port
New Zealand

Although the Redskins in 2012 expressed interest in Winston, who played under Kyle Shanahan while in Houston, they didn’t pursue him this past offseason. He has yet to land a deal with any team because his asking price is believed to be too high. The Redskins believe that Tyler Polumbus can make improvements in his second full season at right tackle. Meanwhile, Trueblood and Pashos seem to be competing for a spot behind him.

With the league-imposed cap penalties ending this upcoming spring, just how much money will the Redskins have come 2014 free agency? 

 – Emmett Mosley

The Redskins will have a fair amount of money to spend next season because of the restrictions that have been in place the past two offseasons. Barring any late offseason signings, they could have around $43 million to spend in free agency next spring.

Is Robert Griffin III now more predisposed to injury in that right knee, or will the wonders of modern surgery combined with a modified running style truly make for a full recovery? 

 – Kenny Boylan

Being that this now his second right knee reconstruction, it does seem like the chances of re-injury would go up. Past cases have shown that. But every person is different, and with medical advances being made, it’s very possible that Griffin’s knee could now be stronger than it was before. For his sake, let’s hope so. But I don’t know that anyone really knows for sure. He can help himself by finding a healthy balance between knowing when to be aggressive and when to scale back, and Mike Shanahan and Kyle Shanahan can help guard against another knee injury by putting Griffin in the best possible situations going forward.

Have a Redskins question? E-mail Mike Jones at mike.jones@washpost.com with the subject line “Mailbag question” for him to answer it in The Mailbag.

Follow: @MikeJonesWaPo | @MarkMaske | @john_keim | @D3Keith | @Insider | @PostSports

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Mike Jones covers the Washington Redskins for The Washington Post. When not writing about a Redskins development of some kind – which is rare – he can be found screaming and cheering at one of his kids’ softball, baseball, soccer or basketball games.
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Keith McMillan · July 8, 2013