This season going into free agency, safety is one of the most glaring, if not the most severe, deficiency on the roster. I have researched who is available and think the Redskins will have their eyes on several players of varying talents, age and contract demands:
1. T Ward - A do it all safety, Ward would instantly take our secondary from worst to first (well, maybe not first) with Pro Bowl level play.
2. D Byrd - (see Ward)
3. C Clemons - More of an coverage type safety, Clemons is not the talent that Byrd or Ward are, but locking down the deep part of the field will help Hall and Amerson to elevate their games.
4. S Brown - Projects similar to Clemons, and may cost around the same to sign. Brown is slightly younger and we would be stealing him from a divisional opponent.
5. M Jenkins - Similar to Brown and Clemons, Jenkins is a little undersized for safety and has been considered somewhat of a dissapointment since being a 2nd round pick a few years ago, so he could come a little cheaper.
6. B Pollard - A tough, strong safety type who's strengths are as in the in the box player, but may represent a liability in coverage.
7. R Clark - Former Redskin brought leadership, toughness and hard hitting to the field every Sunday before we foolishly let him go. Bringing him back on a one year deal would bolster the secondary in many capacities.
8. B Merriweather - All Redskins fans know the pros and cons of Merriweather at this point. Ultimately, he has been are best safety over the past two years (when he actually played) and could be the cheapest option as a starter.
Now, look over a few permutations. One of these is very likely to be our starting safety tandem in 2014:
Plan A1: T Ward AND either M Jenkins or S Brown (10-12 million)
Plan A2: J Byrd AND either R Clark or B Pollard (10-12 million)
Plan B1: T Ward AND B Merriweather (8-10 million)
Plan B2: J Byrd AND B Merriweather (8-10 million)
Plan C1: T Ward AND P Thomas (6-8 million)
Plan C2: J Byrd AND P Thomas (6-8 million)
Plan D1: C Clemons AND either R Clark or B Pollard (6-8 million)
Plan D2: C Clemons AND B Merriweather (5-7 million)
Plan D3: C Clemons AND P Thomas (4-6 million)
Plan E: M Jenkins or S Brown AND R Clark or B Pollard (6-8 million)
Plan F: M Jenkins or S Brown or R Clark or B Pollard AND B Merriweather (3-6 million)
Plan G: R Clark or B Pollard AND B Merriweather (3-5 million)
Plan H: R Clark or B Pollard or B Merriweather AND P Thomas (2-4 million)
Plan I: M Jenkins or S Brown or R Clark or B Pollard or B Merriweather AND P Thomas (2-5 million)
Let me know what you guys like. Some options immediately bolster our secondary into a team strength, while others merely fortify it slightly, while allowing us to spend cap dollars elsewhere on the defense.