Washington has only signed two players from other teams in free agency, but they have been able to bring several of their own players back. Two of those veterans spoke with the media today. First up was J.D. McKissic who’s re-signing caused some controversy when he originally agreed to terms with the Buffalo Bills during the NFL’s 52 hour legal tampering period. McKissic said he was surprised that Washington didn’t make him a contract offer before he was allowed to negotiate with other teams.
He said he had respect for the Bills, but he made his decision based on where he wanted to be. Washington felt like home, and they had unfinished business from last year. The team was hit with COVID and injuries, including his own scary collision that resulted in a concussion and neck injury that ended his season. McKissic said the team is on the rise and he wants to be a part of that, and help continue the overall improvement.
Choosing Washington over Buffalo:
McKissic said he was "a bit" surprised Washington hadn't made an offer before he agreed to Buffalo's deal. "But it is what it is. It's a business."https://t.co/y7wHq7Fijb— Nicki Jhabvala (@NickiJhabvala) March 24, 2022
J.D. McKissic is addressing the media. He said he had unfinished business in Washington. He felt like the team was on the incline before his injury. "Washington is home."— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) March 24, 2022
JD McKissic gives "much respect" to the Bills but says he has "unfinished business" in Washington. Feels like things are on an incline here and he wanted to stay with the Commanders pic.twitter.com/bdVr0PuF9S— Pete Hailey (@PeteHaileyNBCS) March 24, 2022
McKissic said there was a period where the team was doing great things before a lot of players went down with injury. He felt like Washington was one of the hottest teams in the division during that four-game winning streak— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) March 24, 2022
JD McKissic says that everything that happened during free agency “is a business” and that’s just how things go. He believes that without the injuries late last year the Commanders were a playoff team— JP Finlay (@JPFinlayNBCS) March 24, 2022
McKissic said everybody in Washington's RB room was excited about his return. Said that everyone in that position group feels like family— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) March 24, 2022
Cornelius Lucas just re-signed with the Washington Commanders this morning. He signed a 2-year, $8.2 million contract to return to his role as Washington’s swing tackle behind starting left tackle Charles Leno and starting right tackle Sam Cosmi. Lucas said he talked with other teams but there was “a lot of faking and booty shaking” from them and he is glad to be back in Washington. He happy to get a decent contract that helps set up his future after football. He hasn’t met new starting QB Carson Wentz yet, but he’s heard nothing bu good things about the former Colts and Eagles signal caller.
Returning to Washington:
Cornelius Lucas is addressing the media. He's excited to be back with Washington and to be wanted back by the team— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) March 24, 2022
Lucas said he had heard from other teams before agreeing to terms with the Commanders, but there was "a lot of faking and booty shaking," which is absolutely my new favorite phrase— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) March 24, 2022
Cornelius Lucas said he "heard from a few teams."— John Keim (@john_keim) March 24, 2022
Then he dropped this gem:
"I picked up a good amount of traction, more than I have in the past. But everyone was faking and booty-shaking and Washington was the only one that came through."
Another Cornelius Lucas new-deal gem. The money isn't relatable, but his reaction is: “We all want to retire and live on a beach and drive fast cars and have all that money and all that kind of stuff. Today I feel like Washington put me in a trajectory (to get) all that stuff.”— Ben Standig (@BenStandig) March 24, 2022
Lucas said he hasn't met Carson Wentz yet, but he's heard nothing but good things. It's another piece of the puzzle— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) March 24, 2022
Returning to Washington:
Danny Johnson is addressing the media. He's excited to be back in Washington and appreciates their interest in bringing him back— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) March 24, 2022
Johnson said he improved at understanding his role on the defense last season— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) March 24, 2022
Danny Johnson said "it's good to be back in a place I'm familiar with." Said some teams reached out; no other offers.— John Keim (@john_keim) March 24, 2022
Said he improved in understanding the D: "That's where I elevated my game, understanding my assignment and getting that done before trying to do something else."
Danny Johnson is looking forward to building with a secondary that should be a lot more familiar with each other in 2022. He, Bobby McCain, WJ3, Kendall and Kam will all be back, which should lead to less chemistry issues early on in the season. Key word = should pic.twitter.com/m13b7cxDXA— Pete Hailey (@PeteHaileyNBCS) March 24, 2022
LIVE: DE Efe Obada speaks to the media https://t.co/XuvaY9ciiI— Washington Commanders (@Commanders) March 24, 2022
Efe Obada addressing the media. Said the history with Ron Rivera and knowing the type of person and coach he is helped guide him to Washington. It feels like a good fit, he said, and he wants to be part of the culture he's creating in Washington.— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) March 24, 2022
Efe Obada "wants to be a part of [Ron Rivera's] culture" again, one of the primary reasons he chose to sign with the Commanders. He tells us he was "very adamant" to his agents about his wish to come to Washington pic.twitter.com/6taytSwKKz— Pete Hailey (@PeteHaileyNBCS) March 24, 2022
Efe Obada knew nothing about football when he first met Rivera, but Rivera created a culture of learning and growth. That rubs off on a player, he said, and it makes you want to be like that— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) March 24, 2022
Efe Obada says his wife saw kids playing football outside recently overseas and one of them fumbled, so his other friends started picking on him. The kid responded: "Don't worry, I'm going to be the next Efe Obada one day"— Pete Hailey (@PeteHaileyNBCS) March 24, 2022
Obada is familiar with David Bada, another international player on Washington's roster. The two used to be roommates, and Obada believes Bada is on the cusp of really taking off in his career— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) March 24, 2022
Defensive line depth:
Obada said he's going to bring a lot of depth to the Commanders' defensive line— Zach Selby (@ZachSelbyWC) March 24, 2022