With Week 1 slowly but surely crawling towards us, Redskins fans are spending all of their time thinking about the players currently on the team’s roster -- as they should be.
But every once in a while, it’s fun to look back. So before the never-ending radio talk and perpetual postgame analysis of the 2015 season begins to consume our daily lives, let’s do that.
Today, we’re going to catch up with a bunch of former ‘Skins; guys who left Washington recently and have moved on to something else. These names aren’t necessarily the biggest or the brightest, but they are all players who left an impression -- some larger than others, but still an impression nonetheless -- in the minds of every Burgundy and Gold supporter.
It’s time to be reacquainted with some Redskins.
Santana Moss: Alongside Clinton Portis, Sean Taylor and Chris Cooley, Moss is one of the most revered Redskins of the 2000s. But his ten-year stint with the team ended this offseason, as the 36-year-old’s services were no longer necessary in the eyes of new GM Scot McCloughan.
That means that Moss is still very new to his post-football life, but he’s crammed a lot into his schedule thus far. He enrolled in a special business program at his alma mater, the University of Miami, has been running his very own security system called “Do Not Enter,” and has also posted a lot of sweet photos on his Instagram, too. It will be weird to see the Redskins offense take the field in 2015 without #89 split out wide, but by the looks of it, he’s off to a solid start in his life after the NFL.
Brandon Banks: The diminutive speedster was beloved in D.C. for his kick and punt returning skills. From 2010-2012, the (generously listed) 5-foot-7 Kansas State product provided the Redskins a real threat on special teams, one that actually worried opponents despite his slight stature. And as it turns out, after being released after the 2012 campaign, Banks is still using those skills he sharpened as a Redskin -- just a little further north.
Now a special teams ace for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in the Canadian Football League, Banks has taken back four punts for touchdowns and returned one kickoff for a TD, too. In addition, he’s seen some reps at receiver -- something he did on a very limited basis in the NFL -- and has hauled in six touchdowns there. It may not be on the national stage of the world’s preeminent football league, but it’s clear that the 27-year old is still thriving on the gridiron.
Here’s a highlight tape for those of you who miss seeing Banks with the ball in his hands. He definitely brought his wheels to Canada.
Anthony Armstrong: Like Banks, Armstrong’s calling card was his ability to flat-out outrun people. The journeyman burst onto the NFL scene with Washington in 2010 after a long string of stops around the league, and caught 44 passes for 871 yards that season -- good for a 19.8 yards per catch average (third best that year).
He became an afterthought just as quickly as he became relevant, though, snagging only seven receptions in 2011 and bouncing around with a few more franchises before permanently dropping out of the NFL in 2014.
Nowadays, according to his Twitter, Armstrong is a realtor in Texas. The 32-year-old went to high school and college in the Lone Star state, so it makes sense that he would settle there. He still comments on football often on social media, however, showing that his mind is still at least somewhat on the game he played for much of his life.
Adam Carriker: Carriker was traded to the Redskins from the Rams five years ago, and spent three seasons with the Burgundy and Gold as a solid, dependable defensive lineman. His third year was cut short by a leg injury in Week 2, though, and the injury bug has prevented him from appearing in an NFL game since.
Still just 31, Carriker has been an active man since his last professional snap. The former Nebraska star and 2007 first round pick co-hosted a wrestling related radio show that became fairly popular online for some time soon after his exit from D.C. Recently, he participated in the first ever NFL combine for veterans and has stated that he’s interested in making a return to football, but hasn’t been signed yet.
But don’t feel too bad for him -- he’s going to be plenty busy parenting the twin girls that his wife gave birth to on August 2nd. So if he ever does get that call from an organization looking to offer him a contract, let’s hope he’s awake when it happens.
Chris Cooley: If you don’t know what Cooley’s been up to as of late, then I would like to be the first person to welcome back from your trip to Mars.