Friday, March 6, 2015

2015 Free Agency- Ideal Moves

The Redskins have a good amount of salary cap room (around 20 million now plus the money earmarked for the draft, but could easily free up another 15+ through simple, obvious extensions and restructures), but I don't recommend too much in the way of huge flashy moves.

All in all, we'll want to free up around 10 million or so in additional space to make the following moves a possibility. We can free up a minimum of 6-7 mil by extending Trent Williams (current cap hit almost 14 mil), who needs an extension anyway. Another 2 mil could probably be gained by extending Ryan Kerrigan (current 7 mil) who is also in the final year of his deal and should be locked up. Two easy cuts, particularly with the moves below, would be Tracy Porter (>2 mil), and Chris Chester (4 mil), giving us close to 15 million in additional cap space, which should be plenty. Still, more room could be freed up if needed-- DeAngelo Hall's now-completely non-guaranteed 4 million, and at least 2-3 million by restructuring Pierre Garcon, for instance. Making just some of these moves can result in well over 30 million in free cap space without any more significant losses to the roster. So let's delve into guys we want to bring in and how much they will cost us.

We will start with defense. The one guy I'd really be okay with overpaying a bit to nab would be Devin McCourty. We are really, truly desperate at safety and have been for a long time now. He's the only really good option in free agency (Rahim Moore would be a backup option and Nate Allen is okay, but nothing more) and it's not a good draft for safeties, so I think having him lock down one safety spot to let a bunch of less-impressive options (Duke Ihenacho, Phillip Thomas, maybe a rookie) compete to play next to him would help a lot.
Cost: Say, 9.5/year maybe

After that, if we could get Terrence Knighton, Vince Wilfork, or Haloti Ngata if the Ravens release him, that would be great. Good DL help to solidify NT without Cofield, but not Suh-level (or cost). Knighton is the best and youngest option, but will have significant interest on the market, especially from the Raiders with former coach Jack Del Rio and tons of cap room.
Cost: Perhaps 2 years, 11 mil for Wilfork; 3/22 for Ngata; 4/32 for Knighton, I'd guess.

There aren't any really good corners, but there are a lot of mediocre ones. Brandon Flowers, Kareem Jackson, Shareece Wright, Buster Skrine... Bring one of those guys in to compete at corner, fill the group out a little.
Cost: 3 years, 11 mil depending on whom

Keenan Robinson had a strong year one as a starter, but Perry Riley has been disappointing. If we could sign Brandon Spikes, Sean Weatherspoon, someone like that to work the middle with Robinson, it would be a good move
3 years, 13 mil

If we can re-sign Brian Orakpo, great, but latest reports are that he's going to be priced out of our range. If that happens, then we should probably just spend an early-mid rounder on a pass rusher to rotate with Murphy opposite Kerrigan. This draft is very heavy on athletic, potential-laden pass rushers, at #5 and later.

So all things told, that's about a 22 million yearly average for some five starters/heavy contributors. Probably 17 mil in cap hit this year, taking up most of our current cap, but leaving us with a good amount of additional space that can be freed up.

On offense, I don't want to do as much. No big moves at WR or TE, where Niles Paul was just re-signed, or QB, and the only real thing at RB being re-signing Helu or maybe another change of pace guy if we lose out on him.
3 years, 8 mil

OL is really the only place I'd like to splash on offense. We're supposed to be interested in Iupati, which would be great (despite not being so much for the pass blocking) if we could sign him or Blalock.
4 years, 30 mil?

If we can bring in Bulaga, Barksdale, or even Free to take RT that's cool, but more likely would be an unimpressive option like Chris Hairston or Byron Bell to hopefully help Tom Compton push Morgan Moses to start at RT.
Assuming the latter, 3 years, 7 mil

Tress Way was stellar in his first year with us, and Forbath doesn't necessarily need replacement. The return-game and special teams coverage could all help the team significantly, but wouldn't require significant particular investment.

Adds another maybe 13 mil (cap hit of 9 this year) for a total of 26-27 mil of this year's cap we need to solidify the roster this season in an ideal but realistic fashion, with around 7 significant players, our full compliment of draft picks, and probably a few more bit players on smallish deals. Safely, we want perhaps 30 million dollars worth of cap space to give out, which, as we already saw, can be easily enough obtained.

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