Redskins free agency grades: As, Bs and Cs

March 19, 2014

Jason Hatcher, center, rushes Robert Griffin III while Chris Chester, right, tries to block. Hatcher and a guard to help slow down rushers like him were Washington’s key acquisitions. (John McDonnell/The Washington Post)

Here’s The Insider’s sampling of what folks outside The Post are writing about the Redskins:

The ship is probably sailing on the interest in Washington’s free agent moves, but one last post about them, if only to point out what most of us already know — immediate grades can be subjective, all over the board, and not all that meaningful. Still, because we eat them up, here are a few from around the Web:

CBS’s Pete Prisco loves what the Redskins did in free agency; He gave out only two As over the 32 teams, but one was for Washington’s shrewd wheeling and dealing. The Insider’s poll from yesterday is nearing 3,500 votes, and only 5 percent of readers gave Washington an A, so Prisco’s opinion isn’t the norm. If nothing else, it’s a departure from the obvious-grading model of “team that signed the most high-profile players won free agency.” As we know, the big free agent deals aren’t always the best ones.

Wrote Prisco:

“Once upon a time, the Redskins were huge players in free agency. Now they are a lot smarter. They signed seven free agents and four of them should be starters: Defensive tackle Jason Hatcher, receiver Andre Roberts, corner Tracy Porter and guard Shawn Lauvao. They also re-signed linebacker Perry Riley and corner DeAngelo Hall, two starters. I like what Washington did without a huge splash. Grade: A-”

USA Today’s Nate Davis put Washington in his B- group:

You can question the quality of some of the players they’re paying (LB Perry Riley, G Shawn Lauvao), but at least they’re not overpaying anymore, with the possible exception of 31-year-old DL Jason Hatcher. WR Andre Roberts looks like a steal, and GM Bruce Allen should get kudos for finding a way to add players while keeping franchised OLB Brian Orakpo. Safety and O-line depth remain as needs.

● Yesterday on Post Sports Live, all three panelists gave the Redskins a C for their free agency moves:

The Post Sports Live crew assesses the Redskins signings after the first week of free agency. (Post Sports Live/The Washington Post)

 

● I suppose, if you looked hard enough, you could find someone who’s given Washington every grade available. Walter Football graded moves individually, and the Redskins got Ds for adding Tracy Porter and Shawn Lauvao:

“Tracy Porter’s career has really gone downhill ever since he intercepted Peyton Manning for the Super Bowl-sealing pick-six. He went on to struggle with the Saints, Broncos and Raiders, and now the Redskins will be his fourth team in four years.
Porter actually wasn’t too bad in the first half of this past season, so there might be some hope. However, he was absolutely brutal down the stretch, so I don’t know how Washington can justify giving him $6 million.”

On Lauvao:

“This is an obscene amount of money for someone who should be a reserve lineman. Shawn Lauvao has played three full or near-full seasons in the NFL. He was mediocre in 2011 and 2012, but was downright awful this past year. Perhaps that was because of an ankle injury that knocked him out for the first few games, but the fact remains that Washington is paying him way too much money. Even half of this contract would have been excessive.”

Who knows what you have to do to get a F. There are grades and commentary on that same link for the Hatcher signing and others, including pre-March 11 deals. Plus if you read closely, Washington gets slammed for the Lauvao deal while the Falcons and Giants are getting praised for the guards they signed.

Fan site Hogs Haven has a 10-point piece on the moves, and the link I clicked on to get there read, “A is for Allen,” so it’s safe to assume Ken Meringolo liked the moves more than Walter Football did.

The Redskins’ official blog has been taking a creative look at the free agent additions, so you get a look at Akeem Jordan and his new baby, among other things.

 Not having a first-round pick, as Redskins fans are well aware, means mock draft season is less fun. But picking 34th, you’re in the mix for names you might otherwise see in the first round, so mock drafts that extend into the second round are worth reading. Here are a few.

From U-T San Diego’s Eddie Brown:

Ryan Shazier, OLB, Ohio St., Jr.
The Redskins need help all over their defense. Shazier had a vertical jump of 42, the best of any player at the combine. He also demonstrated a knack for making big plays while at Columbus. Top needs: DB, ILB, OL.

From WalterFootball:

Jimmie Ward, S, Northern Illinois
The Redskins wanted to address the safety position this offseason. All they’ve done so far is bring Brandon Meriweather back, which is not enough. They’re talking to Ryan Clark, but if that doesn’t work out, they’ll consider a safety at No. 34.

There’s also a variety of names when you view several mocks on one screen, at the hailredskins.com database.

 ESPN’s John Keim talked to new WR Andre Roberts, discussing Robert Griffin III’s role in drawing him to Washington, among other things.

 ProFootballTalk has the Redskins with $7.4 million left to spend as of yesterday, 22nd in the league.

Coverage from The Post:

Redskins sign LB Akeem Jordan

Washington loses Donald Penn to Raiders

Opening Kick: Are early free-agency moves always best?

D.C. Sports Bog: Issa links Redskins with the Height Act

Follow: @MikeJonesWaPo | @MarkMaske | @Insider | Insider on Facebook

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Mike Jones · March 19, 2014