Five most important free-agent Redskins of the 2021 offseason
This could just as easily be Fabian Moreau depending on a couple of factors. First will be how the battle between Moreau, Ronald Darby, and Jimmy Moreland for the two outside corner spots (Kendall Fuller will play the slot) shakes out. For now, Darby has the edge given his high-level performance in seasons past.
The other question is about Darby’s health. He has missed 20 games over the past three seasons combined and when on the field, he has had some lingering issues due to those injuries. But if Darby performs well in his first year with the Redskins and stays on the field, then the former second-round pick will likely be a player that Rivera and the team will want to keep around.
Darby got off to a great start in his NFL career. He notched a whopping 21 pass defenses as a rookie and played very well in his first three NFL seasons. He was once a great No. 1 corner, but injuries have taken their toll in recent years.
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In 2019, Darby was roasted routinely as a part of the Philadelphia Eagles’ porous secondary. That’s part of the reason he took a “prove it” deal with the Redskins. But with another offseason to recover from the ACL and hip injuries he has had in 2018 and 2019 respectively, he could be closer to the form that made him a coveted asset early in his career.
The choice of Moreau or Darby (or neither, or both) won’t become clearer until the season plays out. But for the time being, Darby has a slight edge over Moreau. He has more league experience than Moreau, has demonstrated better skills overall at his peak, but, believe it or not, is only 98 days older than Moreau.
Maybe Moreau will make this decision difficult. He played well on the outside last year after struggling in the slot. But will he be able to stave off competition from Darby and Moreland? Only time will tell.