In the Spotlight: Renaldo Wynn

The Washington Redskins weren't expecting big things out of Renaldo Wynn when the signed him as a free agent in 2002. They haven't been disappointed.

Since coming to Washington he has yet to do anything to get noticed. But he's there every week, at least according to the stat sheets which show him as having played in all 48 games, starting 47 of them.

In 2004, playing in an aggressive pass rushing defense, Wynn had three sacks in the team's first four games and then was shut out for the rest of the year. He did not force a fumble, nor did he recover one.

Even in praising Wynn, defensive chief Gregg Williams admitted that he hadn't been that impressed with him before coming to Washington:
"He is able to push himself through some difficult times in a ball game and difficult times in a season. He is a very smart football player and more importantly he is more athletic than I thought. You don't get a chance to see all of those things until you're behind the scenes with him."
So, in other words, on TV or in the stands, Williams says not to look for a whole lot out Wynn.

Still, the Redskins get what they pay for in Wynn, who carries a cap hit of $2.2 million in 2005, a relatively modest sum for a nine-year veteran who starts every game. While he rarely makes a big play, he almost never gets caught out of position. His technique in staving off opposing blockers is very solid and he gives a consistently high effort on every snap.

In this defense, he is a two-down defensive end, coming out in most passing situations. It's very difficult to run right at him and he's very good at stringing the play outside to let a linebacker or defensive back make the play.

There was talk of the Redskins drafting a defensive end last April, but they didn't and they still have drafted just one defensive end since 1998. They haven't had a defensive lineman go to the Pro Bowl since Charles Mann went following the 1991 season.

At 30, Wynn doesn't appear to have lost a whole lot but, then again, it's hard to see exactly what he had to lose. Nevertheless, he'll be starting for the Redskins at right DE when the season opens and that's probably good, if not spectacular, for the team.

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