Redskins Rumors

Latest On Colin Kaepernick Workout

Free agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick completed one of the most unique workouts in NFL history this afternoon. The NFL offered to stage a workout for the quarterback earlier this week. However, Kaepernick’s team became weary of the league’s intentions when his representatives were refused in their requests to open the event to the public. In a last minute decision, Kaepernick’s representation moved the event from the Falcons facility to a public location on their own.

Here’s the latest on the workout and its aftermath:

  • When the venue was changed, the NFL released a public statement on NFL.com that expressed they were “disappointed” with Kaepernick’s choice not to participate in the workout they had organized. They claimed “Twenty-five (25) clubs were present for the workout, and all 32 clubs, their head coaches, general managers, and other personnel executives would have received video footage of the interview and workout.” The league also felt the need to note they “made considerable effort to work cooperatively with Colin’s representatives,” among a list of other points that attempted to counter some narratives that the league had been purposely opaque in their negotiations.
  • The league also tweeted out from the league’s official account a thread reiterating some main points from the press release. One key point from the league’s perspective, “Colin moved his workout to a facility an hour from Atlanta Falcons Flowery Branch facility. No one got a heads up until NFL saw the Twitter statement.”
  • Former Raiders and Browns head coach Hue Jackson was scheduled to run the workout orchestrated by the NFL. However, while Kaepernick’s team invited Jackson to run the workout at the new venue, Jackson returned to the airport, according to Michael Silver of NFL.com.
  • WR Bruce Ellington, WR Brice Butler, WR Jordan Veasy, TE/WR Ari Werts, and Panthers S Eric Reid were on the field with Kaepernick for the workout, according to Kaylee Harung of ABC News. The free-agent receivers were likely hoping to catch the eyes of scouts present to view Kaepernick, while Reid has been one of the most consistent advocated for Kaepernick in the league.
  • One claim in the announcement made by Kaepernick’s representatives was that the league required he sign an agreement that included language to limit his ability to bring claims against the league. Of course, given Kaepernick’s previous collusion lawsuit against the league, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk argues the workout was a ploy by the league to put Kaepernick “in legal checkmate.”
  • In the end, there were not nearly as many teams present at Kaepernick’s workout as the NFL claimed would have been present for the workout they had planned. The Washington football team, Eagles, 49ers, Chiefs, Jets, Titans, and Lions were the teams present for his workout, according to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports.
  • The 2-hour workout was streamed on YouTube and consistently maintained roughly 45,000 viewers. On the field, one NFL executive described Kaepernick’s arm talent as “elite” and on the same level as “when he came out of college,” according to Adam Schefter of ESPN.
  • Teams that had personnel present for the workout noted that the workout consisted of 60 throws and “Basically showed he’s the same guy he was,” according to Albert Breer of MMQB. After the workout, Kaepernick did not hold any formal interviews, but in his closing remarks said he would hold an interview with any team. He also thanked his fans for their support and reiterated, “I’ve been ready. I’m staying ready. And I’ll continue to be ready….The ball’s in their court. We’re ready to go.”

Minor NFL Transactions: 11/16/19

Here are Saturday’s minor moves:

Dallas Cowboys

Detroit Lions

Washington Redskins

  • Promoted from practice squad: WR Cam Sims

Trent Williams Discusses NFI, Future

Earlier this month, the Redskins placed offensive lineman Trent Williams on the NFI list, ending his season. This set off a chain of events: Williams blasted the team and said there was no hope of reconciliation, and we later learned that Washington wouldn’t be paying the left tackle any of his 2019 salary.

This obviously isn’t the end of the story. The organization’s decision to place Williams on the NFI and withhold his money will likely have repercussions. Williams previously declined to say whether he’d be filing a grievance through the NFLPA to recoup some of his money, but he also didn’t sound confident about his chances. The veteran’s argument would revolve around the fact that he ended his holdout and reported to the team, but he was unable to wear his helmet because of pain stemming from surgery to remove a cancerous growth on his head. As our own Andrew Ortenberg pointed out, Williams could argue that since Washington’s medical staff failed to advise him to remove the growth on his head earlier, they are at fault.

Regardless, Williams won’t see the field again this season, and in an interview with Rhiannon Walker of The Athletic, the lineman discussed how he’s spending his free time as a boxing manager. While the entire interview into Williams’ passion for boxing is worth a read, we’ve highlighted some of his NFL-related soundbites below.

On owner Dan Snyder’s role regarding Williams’ placement on the NFI list:

“Obviously, no matter what I said or how I felt about him, just speaking out against the organization and kind of putting people on notice about how things are going around there. I don’t think he was particularly happy with that, which led to them putting me on the NFI list prematurely and choosing not to pay me. Of course, he had a leg in that. It is what it is, at this point, it’s over with. I’ll never be a Redskin again, so I don’t have to worry about it.”

On his current focus and his plans for the 2020 season:

“Uh, yeah, pretty much just seeing where I’m going to be at, getting a fresh start, and being able to lace my cleats up and get back on the football field. That’s just what I look forward to. A nice little break, it’s what my body needed, but in my mind, I’m ready to get back.”

On if he has any preferences regarding a new team:

“Haha, nah, cause you know, I’ve got a lot of former coaches around the league that I was very close to in other organizations now. I feel like I can plug and play into another system. But no, I haven’t even, after the Super Bowl you’ll kinda know who needs what and where possible destinations are.”

On his teammates’ reactions to his holdout, public comments about the organization, and placement on the NFI list:

“My teammates have been awesome. Honestly, sometimes I forget what situation I was in just being around those guys in the locker room. They didn’t treat me any different, and everybody was really happy to see me. Actually, coming in was a joy in that sense, because the reception I got was really overwhelming. I was kind of taken aback. I knew they had my back, you know, but it’s different to kind of know it and it’s different to feel it. There, I could feel it.”

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFL Practice Squad Updates: 11/13/19

Today’s practice squad moves:

Arizona Cardinals

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

Denver Broncos

Indianapolis Colts

Los Angeles Rams

  • Signed: C Nate Trewyn

Miami Dolphins

Minnesota Vikings

Read more

Redskins Name Dwayne Haskins Starter For Rest Of 2019

Interim Redskins coach Bill Callahan announced the Dwayne Haskins era will begin in full. The team named its first-round quarterback the starter for the rest of this season.

Haskins has made one start thus far and played in three games. He was the third Redskins quarterback summoned to action this season, following Case Keenum and Colt McCoy. But the two veterans will play behind the rookie going forward.

With the Redskins exiting their bye at 1-8, devoting some time to developing Haskins makes sense. The rookie has faced scrutiny early and has yet to throw his first touchdown pass. He’s completed 27 of 44 passes for 284 yards and four interceptions thus far. Haskins threw a Big Ten-record 50 touchdown passes in his lone season as the Buckeyes’ starter.

Washington still has Alex Smith under contract, but the 14-year veteran has undergone 17 surgeries over the past year to repair his severe leg injury. Smith is not a lock to resume his career, though he is interested in doing so. This led the Redskins to Haskins at No. 15 overall. And the plan is to give him this season’s final seven games to develop.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Latest On Trent Williams, Redskins

The Trent Williams story continues to get more complex by the hour, and we’ve got another batch of updates ready for you. Yesterday the Redskins placed Williams on the NFI list, ending his 2019 season. Early this morning Williams blasted the team and said there was no hope of reconciliation, and then just a few hours ago we heard Washington had decided not to pay the left tackle any of his salary for 2019.

Williams spoke with Dan Graziano of ESPN.com earlier today, and said that he underwent three surgeries this offseason but felt “football-ready” by Week 2 (Twitter link). Williams again confirmed to Graziano that he wants to play next season, saying “It’s what I do. I want to continue my Pro Bowl streak. I want to win a Super Bowl. I’ve got a lot of stuff I want to accomplish. I hate that I got derailed, but I’m blessed and I’m back. Looking for that helmet that can fit” (Twitter link).

When Williams ended his holdout and reported to the team, he said he couldn’t wear his helmet because of pain from the surgery to remove a cancerous growth on his head. Finally, Graziano tweeted that Williams didn’t sound too confident about winning a grievance to get some money back. Williams declined to say whether he’d be filing a grievance through the NFLPA but said “shoot, that’s their discretion. Non-football Illness, you know, it’s cancer, you can’t say it’s related to football. So I don’t know how much argument we have.”

However, Williams might have a case to make. He could argue that since Washington’s medical staff failed to advise him to remove the growth on his head earlier, they are at fault. And it’s possible the “failure to address the issue sooner makes the end result — Williams’ current inability to wear a helmet — a football injury and not a non-football injury,” writes Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk.com. That being said, Florio writes that one source told him it will still be an “uphill battle” for Williams to get his current situation classified as a football injury.

Williams says team doctors repeatedly told him the growth on his head was just a harmless cyst over the years, which obviously turned out not to be true. That sounds like it could be grounds for a malpractice lawsuit, as Florio writes in a separate article. Florio also argues that it would “make sense for the team to offer to terminate his contract in exchange for a full and complete waiver and release of any and all claims,” since Williams has made it clear that he just wants to be released from his contract.

That could be the most sensible option for both sides, as Williams has made it clear he doesn’t want to go through a whole investigation, one that he says the Redskins would use to smear him. This saga is far from over, and it looks like things could get ugly as Washington has made it clear they don’t plan on budging anytime soon.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Redskins Refuse To Pay Trent Williams

The Redskins have elected to not pay Trent Williams the remainder of his $5.1MM base salary for the 2019 season, league sources tell Field Yates and Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (on Twitter). Per league rules, teams have the right to not pay players who are on the non-football injury list and the Redskins are exercising that right. 

Williams was placed on NFI on Thursday. On Friday morning, he lashed out at the Redskins yet again and made it known that he does not intend to play for them ever again. The offensive tackle remains under contract through the 2020 season, but it’s hard to envision a reconciliation for the two sides.

The Redskins had the opportunity to move Williams before the late October trade deadline, but they held on to him instead. The Redskins may explore trades again in the offseason, but at that stage, they won’t have much in the way of leverage. Many have questioned the Redskins’ handling of the Williams’ situation on the whole, as well as their refusal to cut ties with him this year.

Williams, a seven-time Pro Bowler, has missed 13 games over the last three seasons due to various injuries. He graded out as the league’s best overall tackle in 2016, according to Pro Football Focus, and still managed to place No. 21 in a relatively down 2018.

Despite the health issues, including a recent cancer scare, Williams says he wants to continue playing football. Just not in D.C.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Latest On Redskins’ Trent Williams

Left tackle Trent Williams says there is no hope for reconciliation between him and the Redskins. In an interview with Mike Jones of USA Today, the veteran accused the team of showing no real compassion for his medical situation or wellbeing. 

I feel like everything has run its course,” Williams said. “I mean, I do want to play football still and I’m not a free agent until after the 2020 season, so who knows. But the bridge has definitely been burned, and any efforts now, basically are, in my opinion, pretty much just CYA.”

According to Williams, this is nothing new, nor is it exclusive to just him.

Mine isn’t the only situation they got wrong. There are a lot of situations they could have looked into. Why didn’t they do it before now? Why didn’t they do it in Colt McCoy’s case? And they keep putting out these false reports. That’s never helpful. I just feel like regardless of what the findings of the investigation are, they’re going to try to find a way to paint me negatively and make themselves look better.”

Williams’ season is now over, after the Redskins placed him on the NFI list. He wants to resume playing, once he’s healthy, but not in Washington.

Despite his frustrations, Williams did confirm that he approached the Redskins about a contract extension before the start of the season. However, with two years remaining on his contract, he was rebuffed.

I knew I was coming up on a year with no guaranteed money, and I wanted to open the conversation about them making me a Redskin for the rest of my career,” Williams said. “I understand that either a team wants the player and will extend him, or they’ll send him somewhere so they can get some value for him. I told Bruce, ‘I understand that we’re in a rebuild and if you don’t want to dump any more money in the O-line, I’d like to go somewhere that I’m wanted.’ I still felt like I’ve got 5-6 more healthy years left of quality football.”

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Redskins Place Trent Williams On NFI List

The Redskins have placed offensive tackle Trent Williams on the non-football injury list, the club announced today. Now that he’s on NFI, Williams is out for the rest of the season.

Williams reported to Washington in late October following a season-long holdout, but he couldn’t pass his physical after reporting pain while wearing his helmet. The Redskins were reportedly attempting to find Williams a more comfortable helmet, but were apparently unable to do so.

Of course, Williams’ issues with his helmet involves a serious backstory. Williams underwent surgery during the offseason to remove a growth from his head that turned out to be cancerous. The 31-year-old first noticed the growth in 2013, but he says Redskins doctors told him the issue was not severe. However, he’s since been diagnosed with Dermatofibrosarcoma Protuberans (DFSP), a “soft tissue sarcoma that develops in the deep layers of the skin.”

Williams’ contract is not expected to toll as a result of his being placed on NFI, meaning he’ll be under contract for one more season at a base salary of $12.5MM. The Redskins failed to trade Williams in advance of last month’s deadline, but could reportedly consider moving him in a deal this offseason.

Players on the NFI list aren’t technically required to be paid by their clubs. If Washington opts not to pay Williams, the veteran tackle would likely file a grievance against the team, tweets Dan Graziano of ESPN.com, opening an entirely new battle between the Redskins and their offensive line stalwart.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Redskins Activate RB Derruis Guice

The Redskins have formally activated running back Derrius Guice from injured reserve, the club announced today. The move had been fully expected after Washington waived fellow running back Craig Reynolds earlier this week in order to open a roster spot for Guice.

Injuries have defined the early portion of Guice’s NFL career after the Redskins selected him with the 49th overall selection in the 2018 draft. Expected to serve as Washington’s bellcow during his rookie campaign, Guice suffered a torn ACL in May, ending his year before it began. The LSU product made his Redskins debut in Week 1 of the 2019 season, but tore his meniscus and was subsequently placed on injured reserve.

Like all players designated to return from IR, Guice was required to miss at least eight games. He returned to practice in late October, opening a three-week window during which Washington needed to either add him to the 53-man roster or keep him on injured reserve for the rest of the season. Guice will officially return to action when the Redskins return from their bye to play the Jets in Week 11.

With Guice sidelined, veteran Adrian Peterson has taken over as Washington’s starting running back, averaging 19 carries for 96 yards over the club’s last four games. Guice will surely take over some of that workload, but it’s unclear just how involved he’ll be in the Redskins offense, at least initially.