With the football season having ended for Washington Saturday night at the hands of Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, discussion will now have to shift to the off-season.
There is no doubt this team has several key areas it needs to improve this winter/spring to become a consistent competitor in 2021 and beyond - none more important than finding a stabile force at quarterback.
Below is a mock off-season, starting with re-signing our own free agents and taking us through the 2021 NFL Draft.
2021 Salary Cap:
Based upon the NFLPA’s agreement with the league, the 2021 salary cap can not go below $175M, but recent projections have the cap at $195M(how you ask me...IDK).
So, I’m going to go on the high side of this projection and assume we see a $190M salary cap for the new league year.
Given this, the Washington Football Team should have around $55M(give or take a few million) in cap space.
I agree with Bill, that we will see Alex Smith announcing his retirement within the next few weeks, clearing roughly an extra $14.5M in cap space for 2021 - and more in 2022($21M).
*Projected New Cap Space: $69.5M
Re-signing our own:
Fortunately, one of the big off-season pieces, center Chase Roullier, has been locked up for the foreseeable future. However, there are a few more key soon-to-be unrestricted free agents that the Football Team should re-sign.
- Chase Roullier(already done): 4 years, $40.5M($2.2M cap hit in 2021)
- Brandon Scherff: 4 years, $62M($8M cap hit in 2021)
- Ronald Darby: 3 years, $27M($4M cap hit in 2021)
- Kyle Allen - Original round tender($850k)
- Cam Sims - Original round tender(Unknown)
*Projected New Cap Space: $54M
2021 Key Free Agent Acquisitions:
- Allen Robinson(CHI) WR 6’3” 211 Age 27: 3 years, $60M($7M cap hit in 2021)
- Anthony Walker Jr.(IND) ILB 6’1” 238 Age 26: 3 years, $27M($5M cap hit in 2021)
- Jayon Brown(TEN) LB 6’0” 228 Age 26: 3 years, $18M($3M cap hit in 2021)
- Gerald Everett(LAR) TE 6’3” 240 Age 27: 2 year, $12M($6M cap hit in 2021)
Acquired Via Trade:
Washington sends a 2021 1st round pick and 2022 3rd round pick to the Lions for Matt Stafford.
- Matt Stafford(DET) QB 6’3” 220 Age 33: 2 year, $43M($20M cap hit in 2021)
*Projected New Cap Space: $13M
2021 NFL Draft:
Round 1: Traded to Lions
Round 2: Teven Jenkins OT Oklahoma State - Massive, easy-mover with a bit of a nasty steak who can project at either offensive tackle spot in the NFL. Would be best suited in a zone scheme.
Round 3: Elijah Moore WR Ole Miss - Moore is an explosive, tough, run-after-the-catch slot receiver who can thrive in an offense like Scott Turner’s who utilizes a lot of crossers and choice routes.
Round 3: Elijah Molden CB Washington - Uber-athletic corner with smooth hips and good closing speed who can play either on the outside or in the slot.
Round 4: Baron Browning LB Ohio State - Many view him as a downhill thumper with special teams ability due to some hip stiffness and lack of awareness in zone coverage.
Round 6: Peyton Hendershot TE Indiana - Ron and company take a shot on a talented, yet troubled(arrested for domestic violence) tight end.
Round 7: Xavier Henderson S Michigan State - Developmental safety prospect who will need to make his mark on special teams.
*First four rounds were done using TDN’s Mock Draft Simulator
2021 Projected Starting Lineups:
QB - Matt Stafford
RB - Antonio Gibson
WR - Allen Robinson
WR - Terry McLaurin
Slot - Elijah Moore(R)
TE - Logan Thomas/Gerald Everett
LT - Cornelius Lucas/Teven Jenkins(R)
LG - Wes Schweitzer/Saahdiq Charles
C - Chase Roullier
RG - Brandon Scherff
RT - Morgan Moses
EDGE - Chase Young
DT - Jonathan Allen/Matt Ioannidis
DT - Daron Payne
EDGE - Montez Sweat
MIKE - Anthony Walker Jr.
SAM - Cole Holcomb
WILL - Jayon Brown
CB - Kendall Fuller
CB - Ronald Darby
Nickle - Jimmy Morland/Elijah Molden(R)
S - Landon Collins
S - Kamren Curl
I went into the 2021 off-season with hope of finding a quarterback... and find one I did. The price for Stafford may seem a bit high, but he’s a legitimate talent even at age 33. With a solid offensive line in front of him, and weapons all around him, Stafford can thrive with a solid running game, and play-action shots to McLaurin and Robinson.
Outside of quarterback, I really set out to improve our offensive weapons and linebacking corps. You can see that with the free agent signings of Robinson, Everett, Walker Jr. and Brown. I also wanted to keep our offensive line intact, but give us a potential stud young offensive tackle to develop - which I landed in Jenkins.
I know many of you will ask about a Jonathan Allen extension this off-season. Right now, I’m going to hang tight and see how a few things play out. There is always time to get a deal done during the season or next off-season. But, I am a tad bit hesitant to give him a big payday at the moment. Time will tell...
Grade this 2021 off-season plan
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