The Baltimore Ravens made the surprising decision to cut Eric Weddle ahead of free agency. The Washington Redskins should absolutely take an interest in the quality veteran starter.
The 2019 free agent safety market got a little bit stronger on Tuesday when Eric Weddle was released by the Baltimore Ravens. Weddle, 34, has long been one of the stronger starters at the safety position and has started all but three games since the 2010 season. Though he is a little long in the tooth, Weddle won’t be on the market for long.
Weddle is a great coverage player and has always had ballhawk abilities. While he didn’t notch any interceptions last year, he had 10 over the span of his first two seasons with the Ravens and has been key in creating a quality unit there in Baltimore.
With Weddle now available, the Redskins should absolutely be interested. The team has well-documented issues at the safety position, and Weddle might be just the veteran band-aid needed to help solidify that position for a couple of seasons.
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Right now, the ‘Skins have a lot of uncertainty at safety. They cut D.J. Swearinger after he repeatedly spoke out against his teammates and coaches and trade deadline acquisition Ha Ha Clinton-Dix is set to be a free agent. So, both of the team’s starters from last year may not return.
The team also has a couple of former fourth-round picks on the roster, Montae Nicholson and Troy Apke, but they come with question marks. Nicholson was arrested near the end of the last season while Apke spent his rookie year on the Injured Reserve. So, trusting either as a starter would be risky.
Bringing in Weddle would help solidify at least one safety position. He could start alongside Clinton-Dix or another free agent acquisition, maybe Landon Collins, while Nicholson and Apke continue to develop. And if neither progresses enough, the team could eventually invest an early pick in the position while Weddle holds down the fort. In essence, he would be a good stopgap at the very least but could also continue to be a high-quality starter.
Another point of emphasis here: since Weddle was cut, signing him to a lucrative deal wouldn’t affect the team’s potential future compensatory picks. They have increasingly targeted those in recent years, so perhaps that will motivate them to go after Weddle as well.
It remains to be seen whether or not Weddle would want to come to Washington, but at the very least, the Redskins have to be interested in him. He would be a good pickup for a team that desperately needs talent at the safety position.