Playbook: Free-spending ‘Skins have options this offseason

Far be it for us to speculate about what the Redskins will do this offseason.

Any big name on the free-agent market, Washington is willing to pay the biggest price. So, instead of trying to séance with Dan Snyder’s money and pinpoint where it will go, let’s try and find areas where it might be well-placed.

Wide Receiver

This year’s collection of presents under the free-agent tree overflows with receivers. Vincent Jackson, Dwayne Bowe, Reggie Wayne and Marques Colston are just a few of the elite talents who will command huge dollars — the kind of checks Snyder has never been shy about writing. Brandon Lloyd is another interesting name, because he has a history with the Redskins, even if it was before he resurrected his career in Denver.

In the draft, Justin Blackmon is an option at No. 6, if the Browns and Buccaneers pass on him.

Offensive line

Washington has already invested a bunch in the tackle position with Trent Williams and Jamaal Brown. But they could look to upgrade their interior three, and because they run a similar zone run scheme to that of the Texans, free agents Mike Brisiel and Chris Myers could be attractive options.

Whoever becomes Mike Shanahan’s lead back, he is less important than interior offensive linemen who can get to the second level and cut off linebackers. Brisiel and Myers can both move and were the core of Houston’s league-best ground game in 2011.

And Shanahan has a connection to Houston; the Texans’ head coach, Gary Kubiak, was his offensive coordinator in Denver and his son, Kyle Shanahan, was an offensive coach under Kubiak before joining his dad in Washington.

Defensive line

With Ryan Kerrigan and Brian Orakpo in-place as sackers, the Redskins could be smart to look to Houston again for how to get the full potential of those 3-4 outside ‘backers. The Texans’ QB hunters had their rush lanes freed up, thanks to a Pro Bowl season from Antonio Smith and a stellar rookie campaign from rookie J.J. Watt, showing how important “occupiers” are to a 3-4 defensive scheme.

Seattle’s Red Bryant (323 pounds) and Arizona’s Calais Campbell (300 pounds) are two big, athletic ends who can occupy guards and tackles, leaving Orakpo and Kerrigan to work against engaged blockers. At nose tackle, Miami’s Paul Soliai is the biggest catch, though he was franchised last year.

LSU’s Michael Brockers has been rising up draft boards, as well, and could be an option if the Redskins really want to put an emphasis on upgrading their front.


The Redskins haven’t had much success adding quarterbacks over the last few years, whether through free agency or the draft.

If Washington feels this is the year to go all-in, Robert Griffin III might be up for grabs. You can only go so far with the Rex Grossmans of the world under center — but you can set your franchise back yet again with a mistake on a quarterback in the first round.

“Playbook” — the ultimate football Xs and Os show — aired Thursday and Friday on NFL Network during the season. Check the NFL Network broadcast schedule for further details. Follow “Playbook” on Twitter @NFLN_Playbook.

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