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Redskins Eye Needs As Free Agency Begins

Posted Mar 13, 2012

With the No. 2 pick in the NFL Draft now in hand, the Redskins' free agent needs -- and targets -- are starting to come into focus.


Things are a little clearer now.

With free agency starting on Tuesday at 4 p.m. ET, the Redskins completed a trade with the St. Louis Rams for the No. 2 pick in the draft.

The Redskins should be able to address a glaring need with that pick – quarterback appears to be the obvious choice, even though general manager Bruce Allen won’t come out and confirm it.

If that’s the case, then the Redskins’ free agent needs come into focus.

On offense, wide receiver and offensive tackle are needs.

The Redskins are eager to add more playmakers to the offense and they may try to acquire either an established No. 1 receiver or a young receiver with great potential. San Diego’s Vincent Jackson, Indianapolis's Pierre Garcon and New York Giants’ Mario Manningham are among free agents.

With Jammal Brown rehabbing a lingering hip injury this offseason, the Redskins may want to add another right tackle. Six-year veteran Eric Winston, who played for offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan in Houston, was released by the Texans on Monday and he could be a consideration.

Keep an eye on tight end as a need in free agency. Fred Davis is coming back from a four-game suspension at the end of last season and Chris Cooley is returning from a lingering knee injury.

On defense, inside linebacker, cornerback and safety are needs.

Inside linebacker could be a glaring need if the Redskins are unable to re-sign London Fletcher. With Rocky McIntosh and Keyaron Fox also free agents, the team would have just one inside linebacker – Perry Riley – under contract.

Detroit’s Stephen Tulloch and Minnesota’s E.J. Henderson – the former Maryland standout – are among free agents at the position.

At cornerback, the Redskins are expected to return both starters DeAngelo Hall and Josh Wilson but they make take a long-term view at the position and acquire a young defensive back. Kansas City’s Brandon Carr, a four-year veteran at 25 years old, is among free agent cornerbacks.

Safety became a glaring need with Monday’s release of free safety Oshiomogho Atogwe. Strong safety LaRon Landry is an unrestricted free agent and uncertain to return.

Cincinnati’s Reggie Nelson is a free safety option in free agency, while veterans Jordan Babineaux and Jim Leonhard are strong safety options.

The Redskins are also expected to add depth at several positions, perhaps even at quarterback. Even if they draft a top prospect, they may need a veteran to solidify the position.