Apr 9, 2015, 5:49 AM EDT
Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, April 9, 21 days before the Washington Redskins go on the clock at the NFL draft.
Question of the day
A few days a week I’ll give an in-depth answer to a question submitted by a fan on my Twitter feed, via the Real Redskins Facebook page, or in the comments section here. On Twitter address the questions to me at @Rich_TandlerCSN with the #NTK hashtag. There will be a comment thread set up on the Facebook page and if you’re asking your question here, put “for NTK” at the start of the comment.
Today’s question is from Twitter:
I’m going to give you an answer that will surprise you. I think their biggest need in the draft is the one that just addressed via a trade.
The Redskins desperately need to find a free safety in the draft.
Dashon Goldson, just obtained by the Redskins for a swap of draft picks and $4 million in cap space, is a one-year patch at the free safety spot at best. He’ll be 31 by the time Week 2 of the upcoming season rolls around and his play has been in a steep decline the last two years. Even if he bounces back and plays well this season the Redskins will need a replacement sooner rather than later.
In fact, there is a pretty good chance that they will need someone who can line up at free safety at some point this year. Goldson missed three games in 2013 and two last season so there needs to be a capable backup ready.
The Redskins have the option to keep him for the next two years but the salaries are steep, $7.5 million in 2016 and $6.75 million in 2017. It’s safe to say that it’s unlikely that he will be around beyond 2015.
The Redskins need to do some succession planning and get Goldson’s replacement in house sooner rather than later. Or they will be doing the same one-year rental on an aging and declining safety, like they did last year with Ryan Clark, in 2012 with Madieu Williams and in 2011 with O.J. Atogwe.
This draft is thin at safety but Jay Gruden has talked about the possibility of drafting a corner and converting him to safety. There are several possibilities here. You can take a closer look at two of them that I’ve covered in the Draft Countdown series here, Eric Rowe of Utah and Byron Jones of Connecticut.
There are many other areas where an upgrade would be welcome. But given the situation with the last line of defense, free safety has top priority.
—It’s been 102 days since the Redskins played a game. It will be about 157 days until they play another one.
—Days until: Redskins offseason workouts start 11; 2015 NFL Draft 21; Redskins training camp starts 112
If you have any questions about what’s going on at Redskins Park, hit me up in the comments. And I’m always on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.
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