This comes as zero surprise, right? We did not even race to post this one, as it seemed very much a foregone conclusion. It still hurts though. Like many of you, I go to all the games, and Marcus Washington was one of the players that was fun to watch. Not just between the whistles, as he fired up his teammates and the crowd between plays.
When Indy allowed him to go, I was shocked. I could not believe our good fortune getting him. Let's not ever forget that he has been a MAJOR reason why our defense has been solid in the last 5 seasons. I am tempted to roll out the stats but I feel pretty strongly that this guy's contribution went beyond numbers. He made some big plays to be sure. His INT to seal up the game against the Bucs in the playoffs in 2005 was HUGE.
To me, what I will always remember about Marcus Washington was that no matter what the score was, or what our win-loss record was, he always went after it. He never backed down, and he never showed any signs of being intimidated. It never appeared to me that he was going through the motions. It was as important for him to make a bone-crushing hit and let the guy know about it in the 4th quarter of a game we were getting blown out of as it was in a game we were in that mattered. It was obvious he played for his teammates, and it was obvious his teammates knew it.
It was unfortunate he could not be on the field as much this past season. He may not be finished in this league, but those of us who follow closely have at least some reason to believe the hamstring and ankle and hip issues that have plagued him lately are ones not likely to vanish forever. These tend to be at best chronic, or worse, degenerative. I'm no doctor, and I didn't stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night, but these are my fears.
So I guess you have to support the decision to move in the direction of getting younger and fresher. It sucks to see a guy like this go--but it is a testament to the kind of player he was. We didn't draft him, and he was only here for 5 years, but he had a real presence on the field and he very much endeared himself to the fans.
The Redskins will have more tough decisions to make in the coming weeks, and hopefully we can make as much sense out of them as we can with this one.
Best of luck #53.