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Galette on the Grind!

February 1, 2017
Junior Galette, who has yet to even play in a preseason game for the Redskins, never mind a regular season game for Washington,  says he’s signing back with the Redskins today to try and rebound from blown Achilles tendon injuries in each leg.

Galette, said in part, “thankful to be signing another contract w/ the @Redskins tomorrow (Wednesday).” Technically, he's not a free-agent according to Mike Jones of the Washington Post, but it is a different contract and could be (likely) at a lower rate than what Galette signed last year. 

The Redskins haven’t confirmed this yet but I’ll take Galette at his word and there would be no reason to. I would try to confirm this move with a certain general manager but apparently he's been muzzled by America's sweetheart, Bruce Allen. 

The only surprise here was that Galette chose Instagram to announce the news as opposed to Twitter.

While expected, this is huge and great news for the Redskins. Regardless of what the terms of the contract are and that is an insignificant topic to me (in this case, which is very different from that of Kirk Cousins), the Redskins need to try and get something, anything out of Galette.

They might not. He might be done. He might get injured again. He might never be the same. Or he could get ten sacks. I have no idea which one of those scenarios will be the case and I have no expectation either way.

Anybody that says “why do this again?” or “he’s just going to get hurt again” can go kick rocks. You don’t know that. I don’t know that. The Redskins don’t as well.

The same people who will say that are cut from the same mold of those who asked the same questions or made the same uneducated statements about Thomas Davis of the Carolina Panthers. All he’s done is bounce back from three different torn ACL injuries and ranks among the best 4-3 outside linebackers in the game. 

Anybody that says the Redskins didn’t miss anything because they never had Galette is out of their mind.

Image result for junior galette redskins


Galette’s injury probably is the number one reason why Joe Barry is a position coach in Los Angeles as opposed to still being the Redskins defensive coordinator.

Oh that’s right, I forgot! “Every team has injuries” and “next man up!” Right? Yeah OK. Every player, every team and every scheme is the same exact situation, right?

Galette’s injury may have also led to a drop in production by Preston Smith. You might be saying to yourself that it didn’t affect Smith in 2015, so why would it have affected him in 2016?

Ryan Kerrigan was healthier down the stretch in the division title year as opposed to last year and Smith had an incredible hot streak down the stretch, which contributed to his much better rookie season compared to last year. Trent Murphy was just a guy in 2015 but a player who emerged in ’16 because he’s played more and he’s more comfortable.

Player production inflates or drops off for many reasons. Even under the same coach. Yet, there were many that felt Barry used Smith wrong last year. The plan was to use Smith differently, just like it was to use Murphy in a different manner.

The injury to Galette changed everything and forced many of the plans the Redskins had to be ripped up.

Galette was expected to be the Redskins best pure pass rusher. A one-on-one speed demon with size off the edge and a relentless attitude. You don’t think the Redskins defense would have been different over the last two years with him?

Trust me on this: The Redskins would have absolutely made the playoffs last year if Galette was healthy. I have absolutely no doubt and neither should you. His impact and his loss was enormous.

If the Redskins can finally get something out of Galette this year, along with Smith, Murphy and a healthier Kerrigan – Washington would have four edge rushers that are all capable of putting up double-digits in sacks.

More importantly, it would allow new Redskins defensive coordinator Greg Manusky to design certain rush packages designed to overwhelm an offensive line and passing attack without necessarily having to blitz all the time.

Think about the Giants “NASCAR” package that they utilized to beat the Patriots in the Super Bowl, the second time they beat New England in the "big game." Think about what Denver was able to do to Tom Brady and Cam Newton in last year’s run to a championship. That wasn’t Wade Phillips waving a magic wand. That was talent and depth and speed and options.

That’s what the Redskins have been missing. Period.

Even with Galette back in the fold, they should still draft a edge pass rusher because you simply can never have enough and you can always rotate and keep them fresh. In a league that is consistently about 60% pass to run, you now must rotate edge rushers more than you had to in years past.

If you can, they have fresher legs and teams must adjust. You especially need to do this because so many teams run no-huddle and a tempo offense, that rushers lose their edge quickly, just like defensive linemen often do.

The Redskins had no abilty to counter opposing offenses on a consistent basis because they lacked an elite 1-on-1 edge pass rusher to help make up for their lack of a quality safety, their inability to tackle consistently and their lack of team speed.

It’s hard to win games that way. It’s hard to win a division that way. It’s hard to make the playoffs that way.

Galette’s return guarantees nothing except for the chance to finally put together the defense that Joe Barry could have only dreamed of. 

Chris Russell has covered the Washington Redskins for six seasons for multiple media outlets and was a part of the Redskins Radio Network broadcast team for the last five. He covers the Redskins for Monumental Network (www.DCHotRead.com), WashingtonTimes.com, BreakingBurgundy.com & Warpath Magazine. Listen to Chris on Washington D.C.'s # 1 sports radio station, 106.7 The FAN   


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