Redskins make critical move by re-signing Mason Foster
Mason Foster is coming back to the Redskins. Locking up the middle linebacker was a key move for the team.
The Redskins have a lot of players set to hit the free agent market this offseason. Among the more underrated players that were set to be a free agent was Mason Foster. The starting middle linebacker had missed half the season due to an injury, but he was generally effective when on the field. This was despite having a torn labrum that essentially allowed him to use only one of his arms in full.
A superb tackler with decent coverage skills, Foster was an ideal partner to Zach Brown and many hoped that he would return to the team in 2018. Now, it appears that will be a reality, as the 28-year-old free agent is coming back to the team.
According to Foster’s official Twitter, he will be rejoining the Redskins. This was later confirmed by the Redskins official Twitter as well.
According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the deal is worth a maximum of $7 million over two years, with $4 million guaranteed. This is a great value for Foster, as the average annual value of $3.5 million was right at what we expected his market value would be.
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With Foster under contract, the team can now shift their focus to trying to lock up Brown to play alongside him long term. That said, locking up Foster now was a key move as it allows the Redskins to guarantee that they will return at least one quality starter at the middle linebacker position in 2018.
Coming into the offseason, Foster, Brown, and Will Compton, the top three options on the team’s depth chart, were all set to be free agents. It was unknown whether or not Washington would be able to retain any of them. If they all left, the team would have a massive hole at the position, so re-signing at least one of their starting caliber players was paramount.
Locking up Foster has given them security. That’s something that the team sorely needed. With him under contract, the team can still be confident that they will field a solid linebacker corps in the event that Brown and Compton walk. They can spend their first round pick on Roquan Smith to play alongside Foster, or they can rely on a guy like Zach Vigil to start. Either way, re-signing Foster gives the team more options, which was absolutely critical.
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The Redskins have to be happy that they retained Foster. He will provide a veteran presence in the middle of their defense and he should reprise his role as a solid tackler. This was a strong move by the team, provided that they didn’t overpay for him.