Cam Newton could still be shopped in trade talks by the Carolina Panthers if and when his foot is completely healed, and the Washington Redskins may emerge as the team to watch if that ends up being the case.
Matthew Berry of ESPN spoke with sources at the NFL Scouting Combine and was given the impression that the Panthers are open to trading Newton as long as the return is reasonable. As for which teams would be willing to give up something substantial, Berry was told by insiders in both Carolina and Washington that new Redskins head coach Ron Rivera “absolutely loves” Newton.
Rivera coached Newton for eight-plus years with the Panthers. While Newton has had trouble staying healthy over the past two years, Rivera watched the former No. 1 overall pick win the NFL MVP Award and lead Carolina to a Super Bowl appearance in 2015. Newton also seemed crushed when Rivera was fired by the Panthers, which was an indication that the two have a close relationship.
New Panthers head coach Matt Rhule said last week that he is extremely excited to work with Newton, but the consensus seems to be that Carolina would trade Newton if the right offer came along. We know of at least one other team that may aggressively pursue the 30-year-old, but a reunion with Rivera makes some sense if the Redskins aren’t totally sold on Dwayne Haskins.
The Washington Redskins are looking at quarterbacks with the No. 2 overall pick, much to the frustration of Joe Theismann.
The legendary ex-Washington quarterback thinks the Redskins would be doing themselves a huge disservice if they went quarterback No. 2 overall, and thinks the team should just take Chase Young and be done with it.
“They are out of their minds if they think that Tua will go No. 2 to the Redskins,” Theismann told 106.7 The Fan’s Chad Dukes, via Nick Kosko of 247Sports. “That position belongs to Chase Young. Think of it. We’re going to a 4-3 defense. You have Jonathan (Allen). You have Daron (Payne). You have Matt (Ioannidis). You have (Montez) Sweat. You have (Ryan) Kerrigan. You have a rotation. Now, you add, which I think is the best athlete in the draft, to our defensive line. Jack Del Rio is sitting there going, ‘yeah I can do something with this. I’m pretty excited about what we have.’ That is the only way the Redskins should go. Any other way they go would be a major surprise and it wouldn’t make sense. I think Chase Young is the guy there.”
The report that Washington met with the top quarterback prospects in the NFL Draft certainly elicited a lot of reaction. Theismann probably makes the best point. Washington drafted Dwayne Haskins last year, albeit under a different front office regime. If they’re unconvinced by him, there may be other options, but Young may be the best player in the draft.
The Washington Redskins sure sound like they’re in the quarterback market.
According to Pro Football Network’s Tony Pauline, the expectation at the NFL Combine is that the Redskins will launch a pursuit of free agent quarterback Philip Rivers. Those sources, however, believe it will be very difficult for Washington to land Rivers unless they’re prepared to make a massive offer.
The expectation remains that Rivers is most likely to land with the Indianapolis Colts.
It’s pretty clear that Washington is at least exploring quarterback options for 2020. While it seemed that Dwayne Haskins was the team’s quarterback of the future, their draft visits, combined with this rumor, suggests that there is at least some uncertainty about that within the organization. This may be a situation worth watching as the offseason kicks into high gear.
There has been some optimism that Trent Williams could smooth things over with the Washington Redskins now that Ron Rivera has taken over as head coach, but the All-Pro offensive lineman has apparently not changed his stance much from last season.
While Williams and Rivera have been in contact with one another this offseason, Mike Garafolo of NFL Network reported on Thursday that Williams told the Redskins recently that he wants to be traded if they’re not going to give him a new contract.
#Redskins coach Ron Rivera says he’s had good talks with Trent Williams but sources tell me and @RapSheet there’s still work to be done on that front, as Williams has communicated to the team he wants a new contract or a trade. pic.twitter.com/SG7EYDmuNR
— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) February 27, 2020
It’s possible that Williams had some issues with former Redskins head coach Jay Gruden and his staff, so Rivera taking over may have changed Williams’ mind about never playing in Washington again. However, Williams is heading into the final year of his deal after he was placed on the non-football injury list amid his holdout last year. It’s understandable that he wants a new contract, but it would not be a surprise if the Redskins are unwilling to give one to a 31-year-old player who just took a year off.
Williams says Washington’s team doctors misdiagnosed a medical condition he was dealing with for several years, and the way they handled the situation could have cost him his life. Williams says he discovered a growth on his head in 2013 and asked Washington’s medical staff to remove it several times, but he was repeatedly told it was benign. In January 2019, Williams had a biopsy of the growth and was informed it was cancerous. Doctors told Williams the cancer cells were just weeks from penetrating his brain.
All of the allegations Williams has made against Washington are incredibly troubling, and he is not the only player who has accused the team of mishandling a medical situation. The damage may still be done at this point, especially if Williams wants a new contract.
The Washington Redskins drafted a quarterback in the first round of last year’s NFL Draft, but it appears they’re looking at the position again a year later.
The Redskins are meeting with Joe Burrow and Tua Tagovailoa, the consensus top two quarterbacks in this year’s draft, at the NFL Combine. Coach Ron Rivera said the meetings are more than just “due diligence,” though he said he had no problem with Dwayne Haskins, last year’s first round pick.
Ron Rivera says meeting with Burrow and Tua is not just due diligence. They’re real meetings. Rivera likes Dwayne Haskins but says all options are on table.
— JP Finlay (@JPFinlayNBCS) February 26, 2020
Ron Rivera just told the media this is about not closing the door on anything. Called Dwayne Haskins a “good young player.” Is pleased when he does his rounds in the building, he sees Haskins. “You walk by the weight room, he’s there. You walk by the locker room, he’s there.” https://t.co/ituneSsN8Q
— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) February 26, 2020
Burrow will probably be off the board when Washington picks second overall, but Tagovailoa is likely to be there. It’s anyone’s guess how serious Washington actually is about considering a quarterback, but Rivera wants us to think that he’s serious.
The bet here is that Washington still goes with Chase Young — just as their current quarterback thinks they will.
Trent Williams vowed to never play for the Washington Redskins again, but it sure sounds like a real possibility he’ll be part of the team in 2020.
According to Les Carpenter and Mark Maske of the Washington Post, the Redskins are convinced there is a “strong chance” that Williams will rejoin the team for the 2020 season. One source said the “tea leaves” point toward a Williams return, and new coach Ron Rivera has made it a “huge focus” to get Williams back with the team.
Williams had an enormous falling out with the organization after blaming them for misdiagnosing what he said could have been a life-threatening growth on his head. That led the tackle to sit out the entire 2019 season. However, Washington fired team president Bruce Allen and trainer Larry Hess after the season ended, two figures who played a large part in Williams’ refusal to play.
Rivera has been aggressive in trying to get Williams back into the fold. It seems like his efforts may prove successful, and that would be a major coup for the organization.
Ron Rivera made a somewhat shocking decision when he cut Josh Norman from the Carolina Panthers prior to the 2016 season, but the coach’s latest release of the Pro Bowl cornerback is not nearly as surprising.
Norman will be released by the Washington Redskins ahead of free agency, Mike Garafolo of NFL Network reports.
#Redskins are releasing CB Josh Norman, source says. Intriguing situation to watch, as he now has time to find his new team ahead of free agency.
— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) February 14, 2020
Norman signed a five-year, $75 million deal with Washington prior to the 2016 season. The move came after the Panthers placed the franchise tag on Norman and then rescinded it because they felt they were not going to be able to work out a long-term deal with him. Former Jay Gruden took a lighthearted swipe at Norman before the former Redskins coach was fired last season, and it was not exactly a secret that the 32-year-old was on borrowed time in Washington.
The Redskins will save $12.5 million against the salary cap by releasing Norman, so the decision is a no-brainer. While Norman clearly isn’t the shutdown corner he was in Carolina and the signing did not pan out for Washington, it will be interesting to see what type of market forms for him this offseason.