The Redskins secondary took a big hit this year when they lost LaRon Landry to free agency and released O.J. Atogwe. It’s hard to lose your two starting safeties, but both players had injury-plagued, disappointing seasons in 2011, and needed to go. DeJon Gomes and Reed Doughty played well at times last year, and veteran free safety Brandon Meriweather was added a few weeks ago, but that wasn’t enough depth to make new defensive backs coach Raheem Morris comfortable. This week, two more veteran safeties, Madieu Williams and Tanard Jackson, were added to the roster. There are big character differences in these two players, with Williams receiving the Walter Payton Man of the Year Award in 2011 for his philanthropy and community service while Jackson served his second suspension from the NFL for substance abuse. Both should provide some much needed experience to a position the Redskins have been unsure about since Landry first injured his achilles.
The cornerbacks in Washington have been inconsistent to say the least, so they brought back Leigh Torrence, a veteran corner who saw limited action with the Redskins from 2006-2008, but earned a Super Bowl ring with the New Orleans Saints in the 2009 season. He probably won’t bump DeAngelo Hall or Josh Wilson from their starting roles, but adds quality depth and experience to another unit that has struggled for the Redskins. Maybe Hall will be motivated by a capable veteran behind him on the depth chart, which will lead to more tackles and interceptions, and less humiliation from the likes of Dez Bryant and Rob Gronkowski.
Career stats for these new Redskins are:
Madieu Williams (age 30): 489 tackles, 4.5 sacks, 12 INTs. Tanard Jackson (age 26): 239 tackles, 1 sack, 10 INTs. Leigh Torrence (age 30): 130 tackles, 2 INTs.