Commanders could sign an OL from the Bucs
When they won the Super Bowl in 2020, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers had an excellent offensive line. Since then, retirement and injury have decimated the group. But with a draft pick here and a free agent there – players returning from injury – rebuilding is well underway.
It’s still a fluid situation, but the Bucs head into 2023 with a lot of pretty good players across the protection. The fact that they will be blocking for Baker Mayfield is another story.
At least one of the following should be available for the Washington Commanders after cutdown day.
Commanders could sign Aaron Stinnie
Aaron Stinnie offers a certain amount of experience as a backup interior lineman. Tampa Bay may well keep him around if they don’t have enough confidence in their younger players. If they don’t, he could replicate the kind of insurance Wes Schweitzer provided over the past few seasons.
Hopefully, Sam Cosmi, Chris Paul, and Saahdiq Charles will lock down the middle, but there are questions about all of them. Stinnie is a career backup – and he’s coming off a knee injury – but he could still be a steadying influence.
Commanders could sign Brandon Walton
Whereas Stinnie could do a lot of what Schweitzer could do, Brandon Walton might be able to step into Cornelius Lucas’ shoes and become the swing tackle. He is young and has legitimate tackle size, though he is not nearly as big – few are.
If you watched Tampa Bay's game against the New Jets, you probably wouldn’t touch Walton. He did not look good. But I am willing to write this off as one bad game early in the preseason – at least for now.
I have seen good things from Walton in the past and still believe he can develop. In fact, that bad game might make it more likely he will be available.
Is he better than Trent Scott or any of the young tackles the Commanders have for deep depth? Hard to tell with such limited tape, but he’s worth a look.
Commanders could sign Justin Skule
As is Justin Skule – another young veteran tackle who has shown some flashes of being a quality backup tackle. Barring injuries to starters, both Walton and Skule will not make the Bucs final roster.
It looks like a coin flip right now. I would rather have Skule, who played some quality minutes for the San Francisco 49ers back in 2019-20. But tore his ACL two years ago and has not performed very well since.
It's possible that his leg will be much stronger this season. If so, Skule could be a solid swing tackle – a few years younger than Lucas.