The Washington Redskins signed their second new player of significance in the free agent period on Monday, inking former Cowboys cornerback, Orlando Scandrick to a reported two-year deal, worth up to $10 million.
The 31-year old Scandrick has eight career interceptions, eight forced fumbles and 63 passes defended in his time with the Cowboys but has been slowed by injuries over the last three years.
Scandrick tore his ACL and missed the entire 2015 season and suffered a back injury late last year that forced him to miss the Cowboys' final four games.
A couple of things jump out to me on Scandrick:
Before his knee injury in 2015, Scandrick was the best slot defender in the NFL.
Because of that prowess inside, Scandrick is tough, physical and feisty. He’s played inside and outside in his Cowboys career and appears to have not lost his competitive streak or his ability to tackle in the open-field.
Scandrick appears to not only bring versatility, experience and leadership but also matches the mentality that the Redskins have in the secondary, that he’s now a part of. He plays with that energy and swagger that Josh Norman and D.J. Swearinger play with. Even rookie Josh Holsey has flashed some of those qualities.
This philosophy or make-up matches what defensive coordinator Greg Manusky wants in his players. He wants to hit you in the mouth and make you feel some pain. Scandrick clearly has some of that in his football DNA.
I’ll be watching more of his tape, but Scandrick, whose last game for the Cowboys came in that Thursday night debacle for the Redskins in Arlington, can still play inside and outside and in the same game. In his last full game for Dallas, against the Chargers on Thanksgiving Day – Scandrick did just this in plays that
I watched back on NFLGamePass.
It’s one thing to play multiple positions in a pinch like many Redskins had to do last year, but there’s a difference between Ty Nsekhe being asked to play guard because the team had no other choice and what the Redskins will ask of Scandrick.
Redskins fans probably want to forget this but Scandrick was involved heavily in one of the many Redskins special teams' mistakes during 2017. He
scooped up a blocked field goal and brought it nearly all the way for an 86-yard return
setting up the Cowboys inside the Washington five-yard line.
Most Redskins fans already dislike this move based on Scandrick’s injury history. I get it. He’s been banged up. So has Trent Williams. A lot of players get hurt a lot. It’s a physical, violent sport. It’s why Scandrick is available. He wouldn’t be a Redskin otherwise.
You must hope that he stays healthy, but the Redskins should not be heavily counting on Scandrick to play 900 or so snaps this year. They should hope that between Scandrick, Holsey, Quinton Dunbar and Fabian Moreau that they have enough depth at right cornerback and slot to overcome injuries.
Chris Russell has covered the Washington Redskins for eight seasons for multiple media outlets and was a part of the Redskins Radio Network broadcast team for five years. He covers the Redskins, Washington Valor and Baltimore Brigade for Monumental Sports Network (www.DCHotRead.com). Listen to Chris on Washington D.C.'s # 1 sports radio station, 106.7 The FAN