Redskins Lose Courtney Brown

What can Brown do for the Redskins? Apparently nothing: free agent defensive end Courtney Brown spurned the Redskins, signing instead with the Denver Broncos.

In the end, this was more than about money. Brown struggled with the decision, mainly because of the interest showed by Washington coach Joe Gibbs and line coach Greg Blache. And the Redskins had more to offer than Denver.

But Brown opted to reunite with his line coach in Cleveland, Andre Patterson, with whom he is close. In doing so, he turned away from his cousin (Pierson Prioleau) and former college teammate (LaVar Arrington).

If the oft-injured Brown can stay healthy, he could be a solid player. But staying healthy is something he's done only once in his first four years -- and not in the past three. In some ways he was a good risk, knowing you wouldn't be out a lot of cash if he did get hurt -- and he wouldn't cost much if he stayed healthy and played well. On the flipside, the Redskins need to get a young end without an injury-filled past.

The funny thing in the pursuit of Brown is that the front office didn't seem thrilled with him coming out of the draft. One reason: he was too polite in their initial meeting and lacked Arrington's swagger. Some in the organization were heavily swayed by that.

The coaching staff, though, knew they could find a bargain. Again, if Brown stayed healthy. Now the Broncos will get to see if they found a gem. What it also says is that Gibbs' magic touch isn't so magic. This offseason, he's appealed to players to sign here based on familiarity and loyalty (Antonio Pierce and Fred Smoot) and he's tried to woo them by showing lots of love (flying to Cleveland the night Brown was released by the Browns).

But in the end, the Redskins still ended up only signing guys for whom they gave a lot of money. My, how times have changed.

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