Insiders Look at Skins' Free Agency Blitz

Our man at Redskins Park gives you both his view of the newest Redskins plus some insight from NFL insiders.

...The Redskins did their best to check out Brandon Lloyd before trading for him. He had problems in San Francisco, which he acknowledged. But Redskins receivers coach Stan Hixon said he spoke with a 49ers coach before their game last season. Each side talked about his receivers and Hixon said he was never told anything bad about Lloyd. Typically, in those situations, if a player has baggage or is a problem, that will come out.

And one GM, who is not a fan of Mike Nolan, found it ironic that they would paint Lloyd this way and then sign the ever-troubled Antonio Bryant.

...I've spoken with scouts, GMs and defensive coordinators and all of them like what the Redskins have done at receiver. They now have a downfield guy (Santana Moss), an underneath guy (Antwaan Randle El) and a dangerous intermediate guy (Brandon Lloyd). Randle El will be tough in the slot, but he'll be moved around, especially in an offense that loves to put its receivers in motion.

...That said, the signings of end Andre Carter and Adam Archuleta have drawn very mixed reviews. Are they upgrades? Guess so. But the knock on Archuleta is that he can't cover deep and is strictly an in-the-box safety. Hard to imagine Gregg Williams wanting a guy who is one-dimensional. And one GM said he liked Carter's pass-rush skills -- except that in the game his team played the Niners, they shut him down with one-on-one blocking. A good end should beat one-on-one blocking. Phillip Daniels did.

...Quarterback Todd Collins was told he'd be the No. 2 guy behind Mark Brunell. His value is only that he knows the offense. Al Saunders likes him a lot.

...LaVar Arrington is not going to be rushed into a decision on his future. So New York remains alive, as do a number of other teams, including Miami. At least 10 teams have contacted his representatives about a visit. Arrington is a passionate, emotional guy but he wants this decision to be the right one. Which is why he's not rushing into a contract.

...It would be a twist if he ended up in New York. He and Sam Huff would then have traded careers (aside from the titles, etc.). Huff to this day wishes he had spent his whole career in New York and considers himself a Giant. But he obviously loves the Redskins. If Arrington goes to New York, there's a big part of him that would always consider himself a Redskin.

...Ryan Clark's signing with Pittsburgh provides a big loss for the Redskins' locker room -- and the media. Clark kept things loose and had a big-time bond with his teammates, particularly Sean Taylor. That should be underscored. Adam Archuleta can help out Taylor on the field, too, but Taylor was comfortable with Clark. I don't blame the Redskins for signing a bigger, more durable safety -- Clark's injuries last year made you wonder how his body would hold up. But he will be missed. Clark provided the defense with the biggest chip on its shoulder.


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