Over the last eight years, Chris Cooley has been one of few accomplished and successful players for the Washington Redskins. So alot of people are confused to why Washington would release him at a time where their young quarterback needs reliable targets to throw to? I’ll tell you why it was cool to cut ties with Cooley.
Releasing a veteran is never easy. Releasing an injury plagued veteran however is a little easier. Chris Cooley hasn’t proved to be the most reliable Redskin to stay off the injured list. His return and participation this pre season hasn’t been overly impressive either. If you look ahead of him on the depth chart, there is a young man that the Redskins franchise tagged in order to keep in burgundy and gold by the name of Fred Davis. This gives the Redskins one of the highest paid tight ends in the game, at least for this season. If you look behind him on the depth chart, there is a young man that the Redskins converted to a tight end from receiver that shows promise for the future. Add the sure blocking Logan Paulsen to that mix and you have four solid options to make the team. The problem is that teams don’t normally keep four tight ends on their final roster which leaves a tough decision to make. Having a tough decision to make is great decision to have as a NFL franchise. Having the ability to release a player with the talent of Chris Cooley means that the Redskins are fortunate enough to have a high caliber of talent without him on the roster. Personally, I would have given Cooley a chance to start the 4th pre season game and make an impact, but teams on the verge of releasing respected veterans usually do it early to give them a chance to make another football team before the season starts. As I’m sure every true Redskin fan did, I broke down the roster to see if there was a logical way to have kept Cooley on the final roster.
Trimming down a roster to 53 players is not an easy task. I now know this from experience as I made my final cuts on Madden 13’s career mode. The career mode forces you to cut your roster down just as real teams have to do it in the pre season. This was by far the toughest time ever I had to adjust a Redskins roster. Going through this process excited me even more going into the the regular season. Below is my final 53 man roster with notes for why I kept and cut notable players.
QB- Griffin III, Cousins
*Grossman is not that big of an asset to take the chance of Cousins not taking advantage of every chance of playing time that comes about. Sometimes it’s better for a rookie to learn from only coaches. Good luck getting signed somewhere else Rex.
RB- Hightower, Helu Jr., Royster, Morris
WR- Garcon, Moss, Morgan, Hankerson, Briscoe, Banks, Robinson
*The release of Armstrong is to give him the chance to sign with a team that needs a 1-3 WR now. He has untapped potential that will only be able to be shown if injuries occur at the top of the depth chart*
*Banks/Robinson are touchdowns waiting to happen. Every time they touch the ball there is a chance for a spectacular play to be made. You have to have these types of gamebreakers on your team.*
TE- Davis, Paul, Paulsen
*Cooley was one of my last players cut. I tried everything possible to keep him on the team and have it make sense for the progression of the young players and for his salary to be put to good use. There was just no logical way to do it.*
LT- Williams, Compton
LG- Lichtensteiger, Hurt, LeRibeus
C- Montgomery, Sundberg
RG- Chester, Gettis
RT- Polumbus, Smith
DE- Carriker, Golston, Bowen, Jenkins
DT- Cofield, Baker
OLB- Kerrigan, Wilson, Orakpo, Jackson
MLB- Fletcher, Riley, Robinson
CB- Hall, Wilson, Griffin, Thompson, Trent, Crawford
FS- Jackson, Williams
SS- Meriweather, Bernstine
*I feel as though Doughty is not the caliber of athlete you need to sub into the game at any point if you want to have the best chance of winning. He always seems to be 1 step too slow from making the necessary play. Sure he has been consistent for Washington, but when you have the chance to replace a “79 speed” dude, you have to do it. (Meriweather- 91 speed Bernstine- 93 speed)
K/P- Cundiff/ Rocca
*I was forced into this decision from the recent release of Rackers and Gano. Going into his 3rd year as a pro I don’t believe that it was necessary to put Gano under such a close microscope. This was the one guy that I think has the potential to get better every year in the league. I believe he will have a great career with whatever team decides to give him a chance.
Overall, the final 53 man roster for Washington is pretty impressive in some key areas on the team. This should be the first time Washington has players that can step into a significant role for another team after being released. Make sure you log into Facebook and like my page and follow Riggo’s Rag and myself on Twitter to discuss my thoughts on Cooley and my final 53 man roster. HTTR!