Trey Burton would be a solid gamble for the Redskins at the right price
The Washington Redskins don’t have a lot at the tight end position. Trey Burton is available after being released by the Chicago Bears. Could the Redskins take a chance on the veteran?
On Friday afternoon, the Chicago Bears made a key decision about their tight end room. The team elected to release Trey Burton two years after he signed a four-year, $32 million contract to solve their issues at the position.
Burton, 28, had a solid first season in Chicago catching 54 passes for 569 yards and six touchdowns. However, he regressed last season, catching 14 passes for a measly 84 yards. He didn’t have a touchdown, played in only eight games, and eventually fell out of favor with Chicago’s coaching staff.
Now, Burton finds himself back on the free-agent market. And he’ll be looking for a new team to join in order to build up his value in hopes of earning another lucrative contract.
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That said, the Washington Redskins could be an option for Burton. Right now, the team doesn’t have a lot at the tight end position. Logan Thomas, Richard Rodgers, and Jeremy Sprinkle figure to battle for playing time this season. And while Thomas still has some upside at age 29, the converted quarterback is far less proven than Burton and would be better served as a strong backup option.
Burton would come in and be the best tight end on the Redskins right away. He would get a chance to rebuild his value and provide Dwayne Haskins with a middle of the field weapon. Seems like a no-brainer to add one of the architects of the legendary “Philly Special” play, no?
Well, there are some concerns with Burton. Namely, the hip injury he is dealing with. And as J.J. Stankevitz said via JP Finlay of NBC Sports Washington, Burton’s plethora of groin, calf, and hip injuries could have a big-time negative impact on him trying to resurrect his career.
"The Bears’ offense — like the Eagles and Chiefs — needs good tight end play, and Burton didn’t offer that at all in 2019. He was hampered by a sports hernia that locked up his groin just before the Bears’ wild card loss to the Eagles and was never the same, finally going on IR with a calf injury then undergoing hip surgery the Bears hoped would get him back to his 2018 self. But seeing as they know his medicals better than any team and desperately need good tight ends, it’s hard to see Burton resurrecting his career somewhere else."
After dealing with Jordan Reed‘s off and on availability for years, this possibility may concern Redskins fans. But, the fact of the matter is that Burton may come on a cheap, one-year, “prove it” deal, and that could end up being worth it for the squad. If he bounces back, the team can either keep him or let him walk and get a compensatory pick out of it. And if he can’t rebound, they’ll be able to get out of his contract easy. No harm, no foul, save for a bit less cap carryover in 2021.
If Burton is willing to do a one-year deal around the $4-$5 million range (including incentives), the Redskins should at least consider adding him to the fold. He would give the team extra depth and would afford them an opportunity to either wait on selecting a tight end in the 2020 NFL Draft or avoid the position altogether in a weak tight end class.
Burton’s not a perfect option, but as a stopgap band-aid, he could have value for the ‘Skins. It’s at least worth exploring, especially if it gives them a chance to focus on building up offensive line and receiver depth in the middle rounds of the 2020 NFL Draft.