The 2011-2012 season for the Washington Redskins can be summed up in one word: Disappointment. Not that expectations should have been too high. Most fans and experts understood going in that this was another rebuilding year and that the probable ceiling for wins was 7 to 8 games....9 or 10 wins, if everything went right.
Everything did NOT go right.
The suspensions of Trent Williams and Fred Davis for drug violations are just the most recent of the many disappointments of this season; however, there is a potentially valuable silver lining to the let-downs this team has experienced this season: Bargain contracts for the following starters:
1. Fred Davis
The Problem: In the final year of his contract, Davis has had a breakout season which would have led to big time FA dollars. Now serving a 4 game suspension, Fred is one drug violation away from a year-long minimum suspension, severely limiting his chances for a long-term contract offer.
The Solution: Fred failed his drug test after the lockout ended and before the season started. So the hope is that he has decided to change his habits to avoid such trouble in the future. To prove this, Davis will most likely have to sign a short-term deal for less guaranteed money. Perhaps the Redskins can secure their starting TE for a one year contract for between $2-4 million.
2. LaRon Landry
The Problem: Since his achilles tendon injury last season, LaRon has yet to be completely healthy. He has also not lived up to his value as the 6th overall pick in his draft class. I think two possibilities exist for Landry. Either he simply needs to get healthy to return to form, or his body could be breaking down after use of performance enhancing drugs and his best football could be behind him.
The Solution: In either case, Landry hasn't earned elite money. This affords the chance for the Redskins to sign him to a modest, 2 year deal. If he demands a Polomalu-typ contract, let him walk, but Landry should come at a lower price. He still has much to prove.
The Problem: A dirty play by the Eagles to hit an unbalanced Lichtensteiger after the whistle left our starting LG with torn ligaments in his knee, and during his contract year.
The Solution: Kory was playing well and his injury should cause his FA price tag to shrink significantly. Assuming he comes back healthy, the Redskins could resign him to a very modest contract and lock down the left side of the line.
If these players can be brought back healthy with modest contracts, the Redskins could get a lot of value from their starting TE, SS, and LG positions.