Redskins Want Collins to Return as the Backup

By Jason La Canfora
Washington Post Staff Writer
Sunday, February 17, 2008

New Washington Redskins coach Jim Zorn phoned quarterback Todd Collins this week to relay the team's interest in retaining the potential free agent as a backup, and the team also agreed on a one-year contract with Pro Bowl long snapper Ethan Albright.

Zorn told Collins that Jason Campbell would start this fall, but praised Collins's production last season, league sources said, telling the veteran he considers him a strong No. 2.

Collins, 36, has told friends he is eager for the opportunity to earn a starting job, but is not averse to remaining in Washington. The Redskins have not yet made him an offer, but his agent could meet with team officials next week at the combine in Indianapolis.

Jacksonville, Atlanta, St. Louis -- where former assistant head coach-offense Al Saunders landed -- and Minnesota could have interest in Collins, league sources said, though opportunities to start are expected to be minimal. Collins played in the final four games after Campbell was injured and led the team to the playoffs. The Redskins are not expected to retain free agent Mark Brunell, their No. 3 quarterback last season, but could pursue veteran Trent Dilfer.

Albright, one of the most consistent snappers in the NFL, has been with Washington since 2001 and has not missed a game since 1995. "I'm very excited," Albright said yesterday. "I'll be back for another year."

The Redskins also have extended an offer to potential free agent punter Derrick Frost, league sources said, but kick returner Rock Cartwright has yet to be contacted, he said. Cartwright is not optimistic about remaining in Washington, and is seeking a deal worth at least $2 million guaranteed, sources said.

Two other free agents, linebacker Randall Godfrey and safety Pierson Prioleau, are considering joining longtime coach Gregg Williams in Jacksonville, sources said. Washington retains sole negotiating rights to these players until Feb. 29.

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