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Need to Know: The Redskins five top linebackers of the past 20 years

Feb 28, 2014, 4:55 AM EST

LaVar-Arrington

Here is what you need to know on this Friday, February 28, 11 days before the start of NFL free agency.

Nickel coverage

With the Brian Orakpo and Perry Riley contract situations, we have been talking an awful lot about linebackers lately. Here are the Redskins’ five best linebackers of the past 20 years as determined by their Approximate Value.

1. London Fletcher (2007-2013), AV of 73—This comes as no surprise as Fletcher led the team in tackles almost every year he was in Washington and he landed four Pro Bowl spots.

2. LaVar Arrington (2000-2005), 49—Few in team history have been such shooting stars. After three straight Pro Bowl appearances, from 2001-2003 he started just 10 more games in part due to injury and in part due to reasons nobody is quite sure of.

3. Ken Harvey (1994-1998), 46—Proof that the Redskins can sign a free agent and see him play as well as he did with his previous team. Harvey signed with Washington after six years with the Cardinals and made four straight Pro Bowls and racked up 41.5 sacks.

4. Marcus Washington (2004-2008), 42—Another free agent who worked out, Washington was the heart and soul of Gregg Williams’ tough defensive units during the Gibbs 2.0 era.

5. Rocky McIntosh (2006-2011), 37—Yeah, I was kind of surprised by this, too. But things did not end well for him here in a year and a half playing out of position at the Jack inside linebacker spot. In three seasons at a starter at outside linebacker he was quite competent as he averaged 64 tackles a season and recorded five sacks and three interceptions.

Next five: Brian Orakpo, Marvcus Patton, Derek Smith, Lemar Marshall, Ryan Kerrigan.

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Timeline

—It’s been 61 days since the Redskins played a game; it will be about 191 days until they play another one.

Days until: NFL Free agency starts 11; Offseason workouts start 38; NFL Draft 69

In case you missed it

  1. dlsentellesentelle - Feb 28, 2014 at 7:03 AM

    This list of linebackers is incomplete if you ask me or a lot of other fans.You should have put Chris hamburger on this list in front of some on your list or another that did not start but made a huge difference in a lot of games Monte coleman,also could have listed Neal Okewitze, I know that spelling of the last name is not correct. When you reach 69 years old you are lucky to get out of bed least alone spell correctly

    • Rich Tandler - Feb 28, 2014 at 7:05 AM

      I certainly would have listed Hanburger and Coleman and maybe Olkie but they did not play in the last 20 years.

      • dlsentellesentelle - Feb 28, 2014 at 7:27 AM

        Yes my bad on the last comment,Again i failed to think about it being in the last 20 yrs.

  2. shermanp79 - Feb 28, 2014 at 8:16 AM

    I forgot about McIntosh. Where is he? I can’t recall who he signed with a few years ago. LaVar was a BEAST. We didn’t screw up that Draft. We took LaVar and Sammuels.(SP?) I guess it is hard to screw it up picking what was it 2nd and 3rd? I guess we got lucky because there really are many high picks that were BUSTS. I wish both could have played longer. All the guys on the list gave us some great efforts.

    • kenlinkins - Feb 28, 2014 at 9:17 AM

      2000: Cleveland had first pick and took Courtney Brown (bust) and Cincinnati picked 4th and took Peter Warrick who was playing ALF in Las Vegas by 2007 (bust). So, I would say we did pretty good. The whole LaVar thing I never understood the injury, how a ex basketball coach figured into it, and why LaVar never really cleared things up. RICH: What is Lavar’s standing within Redskin Nation? I see him on TV sometimes, but living in Columbus Ohio has it draw backs on the day to day stuff>

      • Rich Tandler - Feb 28, 2014 at 9:35 AM

        I talked to LaVar at FedEx before the “homecoming” game in 2012, it was the first time he’d been back since the last game he played there. He and Snyder have mended fences.

        > >

  3. internetcareer - Feb 28, 2014 at 9:40 AM

    Orakpo needs to be on that list instead of Rocky M. ..because NOBODY belongs on that list unless they at least made the pro bowl. Rocky was never that good.

  4. shawntheagent - Feb 28, 2014 at 6:59 PM

    Rich,

    I understand all the talk about Orakpo and the linebacker position but for me as huge skins fan it’s all about the offensive and defensive lines. You talked about the “potential” depth chart based on the signings the team has had so far along with the assumption of the season starting today and mentioning the word adequate a couple of times. Adequate is the exact problem we have. If I’m Bruce Allen or Morocco Brown or any of those guys in the front office I’m looking at my lines and then looking at my 30 million in cap space and spending all of it on those positions. Obviously that’s how the mind of a fan works and I know it’s not realistically possible but why would Allen not spend most of the cap space on the defensive and offensive line? We would still be able to get Jackson or maybe a veteran stopgap player for the other outside position opposite Kerrigan

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