The Washington Redskins head into the offseason with 14 unrestricted free agents, three exclusive rights free agents and two restricted free agents.
In the coming months, the Washington Redskins will have to make roster decisions on 14 players set to become unrestricted free agents – free to sign with any team -- when the NFL calendar turns to a new year.
“It’s our job to make sure we target the ones we definitely want back that really have an impact on this football team, not only from a talent standpoint but from a leadership standpoint,” Gruden said. “Both of those areas are very important to me, almost more so as a leadership standpoint. A lot of these guys have talent, but we have got to make sure we keep the great leaders in this building.”
Headlining the group, of course, is quarterback
Cousins finished the season throwing for a single-season franchise record 4,917 yards along with 25 touchdowns to two interceptions.
Since taking over starting duties prior to the 2015 regular season opener, Cousins has led the Redskins to a 17-14-1 record along with an NFC East title.
Gruden would like Cousins back for the 2017 season, whether that be under another franchise tag or a long-term deal, as the offense continues its record-setting pace.
“As far as what he’s feeling as far as negotiations are concerned, I’m sure he’s going to leave it up to his agent,” Gruden said. “That’s what most people do. And if they come up with a deal, if we feel like it’s fair and they feel like it’s fair, and we come up to one that’d be great. If not, then we’ll see what happens.”
More on the unrestricted free agents who spent the 2016 season on the active roster:
“I would love to stay here as a Redskin, but at the end of the day I have to do what’s best for my family,” Baker said. “We’ll see what happens, what the numbers will be, and hopefully I’ll be back.
Every time I got my chance to play, I always did [well]. Each and every year, people were like, ‘I didn’t know you were this good.’ I was like, ‘You didn’t let me play.’ Every time I got a chance to play and show the kind of player I can be, I always took advantage of it.”
Perhaps no player was more of a surprise this season than Davis, a 32-year-old who had quite a few doubters following a tough 2015 season.
But the University of Maryland product shined as the team’s No. 2 tight end behind
“I know that I want to continue to play football, because I still love the game and I’m enjoying myself and I’m having fun,” Davis said. “I’m like a kid out there. I mean, these guys, we have so many young guys in this locker room. You can only be a kid, that’s all you can do is be a kid. They’re full of energy, they’re fun to be around and it’s been amazing. It’s been an amazing year.”
Completing his fifth season in Washington, Garçon’s steady play already has him ranked as one of the best wide receivers in Redskins history.
The 30-year old also tallied two 1,000-yard seasons and established a new single-season receptions record with 113 in 2013.
“I definitely want to play here, but its football,” Garçon said. “It’s different from January to March. It’s football, it’s not the Xs and Os, it’s the business side of it, which I have no control over.”
Signed as a free agent last offseason, Garvin led the team in special teams tackles with 16 during the season. He also served as a backup linebacker, finishing the year with 57 appearances on defense.
A native of Upper Marlboro, Md., Garvin grew up a Redskins fan and idolized safety Sean Taylor.
The Redskins’ longest tenured player on the roster, Golston started his career in Washington as a sixth-round pick in the 2006 NFL Draft.
While Golston is 33 years old now, he’s one of the team’s leaders.
“As long as my body is well, I’m going to go out there and do it,” Golston said. “I have an opportunity, and that’s my plan. Goal No. 1 is to get healthy so that I can go out there and compete at a high level, and that will take care of itself this offseason.”
Signed to a Reserve/Future contract last January, Hood was not only able to secure a spot on the active roster, he finished the season with 661 defensive snaps. That was the second most among defensive lineman behind only Baker.
The 2009 first-round pick of the Pittsburgh Steelers finished the year with 33 tackles and a sack in 16 games.
The San Jose State product joined the Redskins as a waiver wire addition in 2014, but suffered season-ending injuries in both 2014 and 2015.
He returned healthy last offseason following a wrist injury suffered in the 2015 season opener against the Miami Dolphins to collect 66 tackles and two passes defensed in 2016.
Ihenacho also led all Redskins safeties in defensive snap counts (636) along with 181 appearances on special teams.
"I’m going to take two weeks off, get my body back to 100 percent, see family, see friends and train, just training," Ihenacho said last week. "Try to be a better player, and just work on my game outside of football so when it comes time for free agency, or wherever I go, if I’m here, don’t matter, I’ll be ready. That’s my mindset. I don’t really have an idea of what it’s going to be like. I'm not somebody that’s guaranteed money, I’m not somebody who’s going to be a headliner. Regardless of what happens I’ll be ready."
Jackson led all qualified NFL receivers with a 17.9 yards-per-reception average, marking the second time in the last three seasons that Jackson has led the NFL in that category (No. 1 with 20.9 in 2014).
The three-time Pro Bowler will certainly have quite a few suitors wanting his services, should he hit the open market.
“It’s been a great three years,” Jackson said in December. “I’ve had a great time here in Washington. I love the city, a lot of great memories. As far as me thinking about my time being here, if it could be my last, I don’t really look at it like that. We’ll see how it plays out. That’s all I can say.”
Originally joining the Redskins during the last week of the preseason, Jenkins was released during the team’s cutdown to 53 players but returned following Golston’s injury.
The 35-year-old was the team’s eldest player on the roster, but still was productive, finishing the year with 16 tackles and 1.5 sacks.
An eight-year veteran with 93 starts with the Minnesota Vikings prior to signing, Sullivan provided a veteran backup to
Since joining the Redskins in 2010, Sundberg has appeared in 91 games for Washington over the last seven seasons and is one of the special teams unit’s leaders.
The veteran cornerback appeared in 16 games for the Redskins in the regular season with two starts – both coming against the New York Giants.
The St. Paul’s (Va.) product finished the year 18 tackles and two passes defensed. Turning 32 years old earlier the month, Toler would be the Redskins’ oldest cornerback should he be re-signed.
Like Sullivan, Whitner Sr. was a mid-season veteran signing for the Redskins. He would ultimately earn a starting role in nine games, but was placed on Injured Reserve prior to the regular season finale.
The 2006 first-round pick recorded 66 tackles and a fumble forced.