NFC East: Jason Taylor

Haynesworth trade still possible?

May, 24, 2010
5/24/10
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So when we last met in this forum, Redskins coach Mike Shanahan was adamant that Pro Bowl defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth would not be traded. But no matter how forceful he's been, it's hard to forget that Shanahan and general manager Bruce Allen attempted to move Haynesworth in the weeks leading up to the Donovan McNabb trade.

Haynesworth
And it's not like the coach has done a superb job hiding his borderline disgust with the player not showing up for offseason workouts. Jason Reid of the Post reported Sunday that the Skins would "prefer" trading Haynesworth before the season if they can receive fair compensation.

So what would it take for a trade to happen? Even with Haynesworth's somewhat dubious past, I'm sure there are teams (Detroit, Cincinnati, Tennessee) that covet his immense talent. I think the most likely scenario is that Washington will take Haynesworth to training camp and wait to see if anyone calls. Haynesworth's trade value could soar if another team loses a defensive tackle to injury. Some of you might recall that scenario with Jason Taylor a few years back.

I could see a team giving up second- and fourth-round draft picks for Haynesworth, but that's only if they're forced into a tough situation. Redskins defensive coordinator Jim Haslett spent some time last week reminding everyone how difficult it will be for Haynesworth to get up to speed.
"When I first got here, we met on a daily basis with the players, we did walk-throughs three times a week with the players ... so it was a process," said Haslett after OTAs last week. "And it wasn't you walk in and one day you know [everything]. It was probably a two-month process just to get 'em lined up right.

"They're relearning everything. Terminology, everything, it's a totally different front. So it was probably a two-month process to get that part. So to walk in off the street and to think you're going to know ... this is one of these defenses that you just don't walk in and think you're going to learn right away. It's not that easy."

But Haynesworth could show up in Detroit and know Jim Schwartz's defense cold. I still think Detroit or Tennessee are the most likely trading partners. I listed the Bengals because I know how much defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer respects Haynesworth's talent. And the fact that Cincinnati leads the league in offering fresh starts now that Jerry Jones has temporarily shuttered his reform school.

In other news, the NFL owners have come to Dallas for another meeting. This will one will be shorter than the one in Orlando, but I'll drop by and visit with them Tuesday.

Report: Skins, Daniels agree to new deal

March, 5, 2010
3/05/10
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The Washington Redskins and defensive end Phillip Daniels have agreed to a two-year contract extension, according to the Post. The 14-year NFL veteran became an unrestricted free agent this morning, but he made it clear he wanted to remain with the Redskins.

"I had a good birthday," Daniels, who turned 37 on Thursday, told the Post. "They gave me a gift and I gave them a gift to come back to them, so it was good all the way around for everybody."

Daniels received a signing bonus of $250,000 and he'll make $912,000 in 2010 and $1 million in 2011. Coach Mike Shanahan and defensive coordinator Jim Haslett were impressed that Daniels played through a painful arm injury last season and they're convinced he can be effective as a 3-4 defensive end. It was Daniels' knee injury in 2008 that caused the Redskins to trade for Dolphins defensive end Jason Taylor.

So yes, it looks like Bruce Allen and Shanahan won't purge the entire roster. I was starting to wonder Thursday afternoon.

Monday Beastlines: Pro Bowl edition

February, 1, 2010
2/01/10
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Players from the NFC East dominated the Pro Bowl roster. Let's take a quick look at how they performed.

Cowboys

Eagles

Giants

Redskins

Welcome to all-decade week!

June, 22, 2009
6/22/09
2:11
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Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

It's Day 1 of ESPN.com's all-decade week -- for this decade. Mike Sando, who spearheaded this summer project, leads us off with the all-decade defense. We'll unveil the starting offense Tuesday, and I'll be blogging on that topic throughout the day.

But for now, let's focus our attention on the defense. I was responsible for talking to numerous coaches, players and personnel types to come up with the best safeties of the decade. I made a strong argument for Brian Dawkins during those discussions, but it became very clear that Ed Reed and Troy Polamalu would prevail. I was a bit surprised that former Eagles cornerback Troy Vincent was named to the team, but he was a remarkable player in the first part of the decade.

Here are the players with NFC East ties who made the team:

DE Michael Strahan, Giants

DE Jason Taylor (I know, I know)

CB Champ Bailey, Redskins

CB Troy Vincent, Eagles and Redskins

The only name that really bothers me not being on the list is Dawkins. I think he's a potential Hall of Fame player, although the voters haven't been kind to safeties. But you could also make a very strong argument for John Lynch. At the start of the decade, he was the measuring stick for drafting safeties.

And I should mention that the late Sean Taylor was remarkable during his time in the league.

Does Boldin's dumping of Drew help the Beast?

May, 26, 2009
5/26/09
5:36
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Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

Don't expect the ubiquitous Drew Rosenhaus to receive a lot of sympathy cards/Tweets after being dumped by Cardinals wide receiver Anquan Boldin on Friday. NFC West blogger Mike Sando has a really logical take on the story right here.

Rosenhaus has swooped in and signed players away from agents for years. And it always seems to be right before a big payday. For once, he's seeing what it feels like to be on the other end. Now it will be interesting to see which direction Boldin goes. I wouldn't be surprised at all to see him go to CAA, where Tom Condon (name a starting quarterback in the league), Ben Dogra (Jason Smith) and Ken Kremer (Tony Romo) reside. They've pretty much owned the first days of the draft the last couple of years, and Condon takes a much different approach than Rosenhaus.

I also think Eugene Parker (Larry Fitzgerald) is a good name, although I think Boldin would like to get out of Fitzgerald's shadow. So what does all this mean to the NFC East?

Maybe not a lot, but there's always a chance that a fresh approach could work. Rosenhaus has more ties to the Giants than any team in the division, but it's not like general manager Jerry Reese is in love with any of these guys. In theory, the Eagles have the best shot of landing Boldin in a trade because of their cap room. But at this point, I think the Eagles and Giants are both serious about relying on their younger players at the receiver position.

But all it takes is one injury in a minicamp or training camp to create some movement (see Jason Taylor '08). I still think Boldin would be an excellent fit for the Eagles because he'd give them a big, physical receiver to go along with speedsters Jeremy Maclin and DeSean Jackson.

So where will Boldin be in '09? I still think there's a 90 percent chance he's with the Cardinals -- without the big money he's looking for.

Wednesday Beastlines: Skins edition

May, 20, 2009
5/20/09
3:00
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Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

Last but certainly not least, let's check in with what Redskins fans should be reading this afternoon. I'm planning to drop by the Skins' OTAs in early June to visit with Jason Campbell and Big Al Haynesworth. But until then, we'll keep our ear to the ground. I've made a request to talk to Greg Blache about this (SAM linebacker) situation with Brian Orakpo. We'll let you know what happens to that request.

Redskins

  • As Dan Steinberg points out, the Redskins' nickname is still a controversial topic. He does a nice job linking to several different points of view. Actually, it's mostly the same points of view. No one really wants to come out and vehemently defend the nickname -- other than to say "it's been around forever." Do I ever think it will change? No way.
  • Jason Taylor doesn't want to take any parting shots at the Redskins, but...

Taylor takes $7 million paycut to be a Dolphin

May, 13, 2009
5/13/09
5:37
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Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

Defensive end Jason Taylor could have returned to Washington in 2009 and made close to $8.5 million. Instead, he has chosen to return home and play one more season for $1.5 million.

I'm normally skeptical when players start talking about wanting to be closer to their families. But in this case, Taylor is putting his money where his mouth is. In some ways, this seems like a noble thing, but it also seems like an indictment of what Dan Snyder is trying to accomplish in Washington. For $8.5 million, I would have found a way to move my family to Washington for a year, especially with some of the summer supersavers I've been seeing on the Internet.

Monday Beastlines

March, 30, 2009
3/30/09
11:27
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Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

Cowboys

Eagles

Giants

Redskins

Jason Taylor didn't want to 'steal' from Skins

March, 30, 2009
3/30/09
9:38
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Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

The Washington Redskins have suggested that it was Jason Taylor's refusal to increase his time in the club's voluntary workout program that led to his release. But Taylor was telling a different story during a charity event in Hollywood, Fla., on Sunday.

  Taylor

When Taylor kept saying that what had been reported in Washington wasn't accurate, AFC East blogger Tim Graham asked for clarification.

"I don't want to say anything bad about Dan [Snyder], the organization," Taylor said. "They were great to work with. We sat down here in Miami and I told him point blank I didn't want to steal from him; I didn't want to go up there and take the eight-and-a-half-million dollars and not be productive. It wasn't fair. I took a lot of heat last year for the lack of productivity, and the injuries and what not, but after you play in a certain system and a certain situation for 11 years, and make the Pro Bowl six times, then go up and they tell you now play the other side, it doesn't always work that way. We couldn't find that mix last year, and I didn't want to go through that whole thing again, personally or on the team side. I just didn't think it was fair to Dan."

You know how much it pains me to be cynical, but something doesn't smell right here. Taylor walked away from $8.5 million because he didn't think he was earning it? There may be some truth to that, but I believe the biggest reason Taylor's gone is because Snyder and Vinny Cerrato tried to force him into attending offseason workouts. Taylor has his eye on a future in the entertainment world, and working out four days a week in Ashburn, Va., would've cramped his style. Taylor was asked if he simply needed a fresh start somewhere else.

"No, I stressed that wasn't the most beneficial situation for either one of us. It wasn't fair to the team, to him, or to myself. Believe it or not I didn't want to steal $8 million and do nothing. I wanted to be on a team and help them win. People do that, and if that's their thing that's their thing. But people down here know me well enough that they know I like to be productive and it's not all about money for me. It is part of the business; we all understand that. But would I rather steal $8 million or go be productive and help a team? I'd like to help a team."

Haynesworth reports for duty this Monday

March, 11, 2009
3/11/09
5:26
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Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

Washington Redskins defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth will report for offseason workout duty Monday at Redskins Park. Apparently Haynesworth's more interested than Jason Taylor in picking up his guaranteed money. Vinny Cerrato has confirmed that Haynesworth and DeAngelo Hall both have workout clauses in their contracts.

And isn't that big of them? We shouldn't dwell on the fact that they're making a combined $63.5 million in guaranteed money. They're taking time out of a busy offseason to work that in. But seriously, how ridiculous is it that owners have to put special incentives in contracts for voluntary workouts? I'm thinking that's sort of implied when you pay a man $41 million.

Curious to see what you guys think.

Redskins still talking to Daniels

March, 10, 2009
3/10/09
10:59
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Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

The Washington Redskins are continuing to talk to unrestricted free-agent defensive end Phillip Daniels about a new contract. At age 36, Daniels is coming off knee surgery, but he thinks he'll be ready to go for '09. The release of Jason Taylor certainly improved Daniels' value to the team. You'll recall that it was Daniels' injury that forced the club to trade for Taylor.

Was it smart for the Redskins to get in a dispute with Taylor over the offseason program? I think they could use some more firepower at defensive end -- and you can't simply assume it will come from the draft. Not with this team's recent track record in late April.

Redskins getting older at DE?

March, 9, 2009
3/09/09
10:40
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Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

 Daniels
 Wynn

The Washington Redskins could reunite defensive ends Phillip Daniels and Renaldo Wynn in '09, according to David Elfin of the Washington Times. Since Jason Taylor was released this week, the Redskins have been a little more focused on signing the 36-year-old Daniels. He was scheduled to start last season, but suffered a left knee injury in training camp, which prompted the club to sign Taylor.

Daniels is saying that the Redskins have approached the 34-year-old Wynn, who played a bit part for the Giants last season. The plan would be for Wynn and Daniels to rotate at left end.

But with all due respect to those players, it's not like they'll be feared by opposing quarterbacks. We'll see right away just how valuable defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth is. If the season started now, he'd be surrounded by far less talent than he had in Nashville.

The good news for Redskins fans is that Washington could land an elite pass-rusher with the No. 13 pick in the draft. Much, much more to come.

Could T.O. stay in the NFC East?

March, 5, 2009
3/05/09
11:19
AM ET
Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

After Jerry Jones' surprising move to release Terrell Owens, we're now wondering where the receiver will end up. The problem for T.O. is that Jones was the only owner that appeared to be intoxicated by the player's production and star appeal. Here's a look at what the other three teams in the division might be thinking:

Eagles: Hahahahahaha...Wouldn't it be great to see T.O. reunited with Donovan McNabb? Would this qualify as the type of addition that would appease McNabb as he sits in judgment of Eagles' management? And the funny thing is there's probably a pocket of Eagles fans that would be all for this move. But Andy Reid would never let this happen. So let's cross off the Eagles from our list.

Giants: Seems more plausible, but here's one report from Newsday's Bob Glauber saying the team has "zero" interest in Owens. With Plaxico Burress' career hanging in the balance, the Giants need a backup plan. T.O. would give them a big-play threat, but he'd be a poor fit with Eli Manning. OK, he's a poor fit with any quarterback. But I especially think that he'd annoy Manning, who struggled when tight end Jeremy Shockey kept barking at him. T.O. would make Shockey look encouraging.

Redskins: Ding ding ding! Dan Snyder would absolutely love to make this deal. He's close friends with Jerry Jones, but that wouldn't preclude Snyder from signing T.O. to an inflated deal. Conventional wisdom suggests the Redskins are out of money, but Snyder's not about being conventional. He could use some of the money he's saving on Jason Taylor to go after T.O. I don't think Jim Zorn would look forward to working with T.O., but he might not have a choice. The Redskins could offer T.O. a one-year deal worth somewhere in the $4 million neighborhood. By the way, he picked up a check for $13 million from the Cowboys last offseason, so don't feel too bad for Owens.

Wednesday Beastlines: Redskins edition

March, 4, 2009
3/04/09
3:00
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Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

Redskins

Cerrato 'totally disappointed' by Taylor's exit

March, 4, 2009
3/04/09
9:59
AM ET
Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

Lost in the euphoria of the Haynesworth-Hall signings was the fact that the Redskins parted ways with defensive end Jason Taylor on Monday. Something told me that personnel chief Vinny Cerrato would bare his fangs over Taylor's decision -- and he didn't disappoint. Taylor had assured the Redskins that he would play at least two years for the club. But owner Dan Snyder and Cerrato recently took a trip to South Beach to inform Taylor they wanted him to attend 75 percent of the offseason workouts in Ashburn, Va. That wasn't what Taylor signed up for, so he left $8.5 million sitting on the table and decided to stay home.

"Dan and I flew down [to Miami], had dinner with him a couple of weeks ago, told him we wanted him to work out up here 75 percent of the time. And it's not a lot.

"It's 39 workouts to make 75 percent, and 14 of 'em are mandatory with the OTAs [organized team activities] and the minicamps. So it was 25 workouts in 13 weeks. He could come on Tuesday, worked out Wednesday, work out early Thursday and fly home. He'd just have to be here Tuesday and Wednesday, really."

Taylor, who had a public disagreement with Bill Parcells last offseason, has decided to leave this dispute alone. His agent basically indicated Tuesday that Taylor was taking the high road. But Cerrato wasn't finished.

"We felt like to get the best out of him, because he didn't work out all last year, because he was doing ['Dancing With the Stars'], they needed him to be at the complex," Cerrato said. "And that's what Bill had the problem with, because he wasn't in [Miami's] offseason program. We just wanted to get him in shape to make sure that he was in shape."

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