Yesterday, when I posted my first 2021 mock off-season, I gave a hint to a few readers in the comments section that I “may” have done another alternative version. Well, actually, if you want the truth, I worked up quite a few of these before settling on my favorite(s).
Below you will see the “alternative” version that I debated on publishing. In this version, you’ll notice that some of my choices remained the same as the previous version - however, there is a big change from yesterday’s mock that you’ll see below.
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)
- Taylor Heinicke: 1 year, $2.2M(2.2M cap hit in 2021)
- Cam Sims: Original round tender(Unknown)
*Projected New Cap Space: $53M
2021 Key Free Agent Acquisitions:
- Curtis Samuel(CAR) WR 5’11” 195 Age 24: 4 years, 48M(4.5M cap hit in 2021)
- Marcus Williams(NO) FS 6’1” 195 Age 24: 4 years, 44M(6M cap hit in 2021)
- Jayon Brown(TEN) LB 6’0” 228 Age 26: 3 years, 18M(4M 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 conditional 5th round pick(that can go to a 4th with qualifiers) to the Raiders for Marcus Mariota.
- Marcus Mariota(LV) QB 6’4” 222 Age 27: 1 year, 10.7M(10.7M cap hit in 2021)
New Cap Space: $21.8M
2021 NFL Draft:
Round 1: Trey Lance QB North Dakota State - Raw, developmental quarterback with a tremendously high ceiling and athletic traits coaches drool over. He’ll need a year or two learning the nuances of the position before he’s game-ready.
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: Hunter Long TE Boston College - Big, powerful in-line tight end prospect who can become that 3-down weapon given some time to refine his route running.
Round 3: Merlin Robertson LB Arizona State - Massive linebacker with plus movement skills and a sure tackler.
Round 4: Trey Sermon RB Ohio State - Sermon, the former Oklahoma Sooner transfer, started the year off slow, but burst onto the scene for the Buckeyes in the second half of their abbreviated season. He hurt his shoulder in the National Championship game, but he should be good to go come spring. He got a nice mix of speed and power, and would be a great change-of-pace runner with future lead-back potential.
Round 6: Keith Taylor CB Washington - Long, rangy, physical boundary corner who’s not afraid to stick his nose into the action.
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
Analysis/Reasoning: I went into the 2021 off-season with hope of finding a quarterback, but also trying to be realistic of who we had a shot at landing. So no, you didn’t see a Deshawn Watson or Matt Stafford trade, or us signing Dak Prescott as a free agent(just don’t think he becomes one).
Instead I opted for a cheaper, younger, mobile bridge quarterback(and believe me when I say mobility is key). I made a trade with the Raiders, giving up a conditional fifth rounder to land Marcus Mariota(I think Gruden and Mayock really want that 10M off their books). Now, let me just say that I’m not the biggest Mariota fan out there, but I believe with his athleticism, and in a controlled offense with playmakers surrounding him, he can win games, and most importantly be that bridge to a younger, drafted quarterback like you see her with Trey Lance.
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 Samuel, Everett, 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 offseason. But, I am a tad bit hesitant to give him a big payday at the moment.
Time will tell...
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