The Redskins signed center Casey Rabach and wide receiver David Patten while also obtaining wide receiver Santana Moss from the Jets in a trade for Laveranues Coles. The departures of Coles, linebacker Antonio Pierce and cornerback Fred Smoot, however, are causes for concern because none of these significant pieces have been replaced.
With the ninth overall pick in the draft, Washington has numerous options. Depth along the offensive line could be addressed and an upgrade at linebacker is a possibility. But the most pressing need could be at cornerback or wide receiver.
Cornerbacks Antrel Rolle of Miami or Adam Jones of West Virginia could be targeted by the Redskins, who could also be eying wide receivers Braylon Edwards of Michigan or Mike Williams of USC. Rolle appears to be tailor-made for Washington's defense due to his size, strength and versatility, while Williams seems to be the most likely receiver to be available.
Cornerback – Having traded Champ Bailey last year and losing Smoot to free agency this offseason, the Redskins must look toward adding quality and depth at cornerback. Depth is a serious issue for the Redskins, who plan to start veterans Shawn Springs and Walt Harris. Unable to secure additional talent and depth in free agency, the Redskins are expected to use the ninth overall pick on a cornerback (Rolle or Jones).
Linebacker – With the departure of Pierce in free agency and significant knee woes with veteran Mike Barrow, the Redskins must address this position. They have not been able to improve at middle linebacker through free agency, leaving the draft as a viable option. But a late free-agent signing could be a likely possibility.
Wide receiver – The Redskins are still trying to trade Rod Gardner, the club's only true big receiver, and they lack a legitimate No. 1 receiver. Moss and Patten provide depth, but they're small receivers, leaving the Redskins needing an influx of talent and size at the position.
Defensive end – This is solely to add depth and a look toward the future. Phillip Daniels will return from injury to help an already solid defense void of pass-rushers along the defensive line. Wisconsin pass-rushing defensive end Erasmus Jones could be a possibility on draft day.
FREE AGENCY AND OFFSEASON
FRANCHISE PLAYER: None.
TRANSITION PLAYER: None.
RESTRICTED FREE AGENTS: RB Rock Cartwright (tendered at $656,000 with seventh-round pick as compensation), DE Demetric Evans (tendered at $656,000 with no compensation), QB Tim Hasselbeck (tendered at $656,000 with no compensation), S Andre Lott (tendered at $656,000 with fifth-round pick as compensation), DE Ron Warner (tendered at $656,000 with seventh-round pick as compensation).
EXCLUSIVE RIGHTS FREE AGENT: PK Jeff Chandler (tendered at $380,000).
PLAYERS ACQUIRED: WR Santana Moss, WR David Patten, S Pierson Prioleau, C Casey Rabach.