Report Critical Of Parker/Johnson Signings

Mike Florio via the Sporting News has a report out today titled “Seven questionable NFL free-agent signings”.  The Redskins are unfortunately on the list of offenders.  He says of the Redskins backfield:

With an aging, battered Clinton Portis leading the way for the Redskins’ running game, new coach Mike Shanahan had a great idea for rebuilding the attack.

He signed two more of them.

The Redskins have added Larry Johnson and Willie Parker to the mix, presumably with the intent of all three making the final 53-man roster.

Meanwhile, the Redskins also pursued Brian Westbrook, yet another old and banged-up tailback.

While the franchise has resisted (for a change) the urge to spend too much money, if this is what being frugal produces it could make more sense to overspend.

Personally, I see why L.T. going to the Jets is on this list… I don’t see Tomlinson having much left in the tank – and it was obvious in San Diego.  But I think the Redskins signing Parker and Johnson who are still two years younger than L.T. to their backfield for some credibility is an improvement over Rock Cartwright and Ladell Betts.  I think Shanahan has some ideas about how he wants his backfield structured – and my guess is it’s with Portis and Johnson being the workhorses, and Parker tidying up late in the game if need be.  It reminds me a lot of the trio Dallas has been using the past few years with Barber, Jones, and Choice… and I believe it was wise of Shanahan to figure out a way to build a decent backfield in the short term by not spending a ton of money.  I view it as a success much more than something to complain about because of the age of the players… and I look forward to the Redskins proving their critics wrong on this front.


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