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Karlos Dansby might be best fit for Redskins in free agency

With free agency beginning just after midnight tonight, the Redskins might make another big splash out of the gate as they did last offseason with the signing of defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth.

The Redskins are among the teams believed to be interested in defensive end/linebacker Julius Peppers - considered the premier player in this class. But if Peppers signs elsewhere, linebacker Karlos Dansby is another high-profile player who might bring a lot to Ashburn, people familiar with the situation said today.

There are some in the organization who believe that Dansby, among the league's most productive linebackers in six seasons with the Arizona Cardinals, would be an ideal fit for the team's new 3-4 base defense. Dansby, 28, would work well in the middle with London Fletcher and could take the lead role when Fletcher, 34, moves on or retires, league sources said.

In his last two seasons with the Cardinals, Dansby was credited with more than 100 tackles. And Dansby is considered a positive presence in the locker room, people who have played with him say.

The Redskins are expected to bolster the secondary around top corner DeAngelo Hall, and adding a tackler of Dansby's caliber could help to strengthen the defense overall. And in signing Dansby, the Redskins could keep him from joining a division opponent.

The New York Giants are expected to make a strong run at Dansby to fill their need at middle linebacker. Other teams, including the Miami Dolphins, could provide competition for Dansby's services.

The buzz around the league is that Peppers might want even more than Redskins owner Daniel Snyder is willing to pay. Of course, Dansby won't come cheaply, either. Assigned the franchise tag by the Cardinals last season, Dansby was the league's highest-paid linebacker with a base salary of almost $9.7 million.

Defensive coordinator Jim Haslett could pair Fletcher inside with Rocky McIntosh. Some at Redskins Park believe that's actually the path Coach Mike Shanahan and Haslett plan to take unless the team acquires a starting-caliber inside linebacker in the market or through the draft.

The decision to use versatile defensive tackle Lorenzo Alexander at outside linebacker, albeit on a part-time basis, underscores the Redskins' concerns about their talent level and depth at the position. That's why the potential pursuit of Peppers makes sense to many at the complex.

But if Peppers proves too costly and the Redskins are successful in addressing their outside linebacker concerns by committee - which could include the signing of someone such as free agent Leonard Little - Dansby might prove to be an impact signing and long-term solution in the middle.

By Jason Reid  |  March 4, 2010; 12:44 PM ET
Categories:  Daniel M. Snyder , Free agency , Jason Reid , Jim Haslett , Mike Shanahan  
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Next: Chris Samuels retires from playing, turns to coaching

Comments

Told you.

Posted by: Rypien11 | March 4, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Dansby and Rolle and that's it!!

Posted by: PAskinsfan17 | March 4, 2010 12:58 PM | Report abuse


Adam Schefter, of ESPN, reports the Oakland Raiders are expected to release DT Gerard Warren before they have to pay his upcoming roster bonus

Posted by: skinfanman | March 4, 2010 12:59 PM | Report abuse

So midnight tonight is the deadline to get the CBA ratified, or else face an uncapped 2010 and potential work stoppage in 2011…..are the 2 sides even speaking at this point? I know it is obviously prudent to be making free agency plans based upon the CBA not getting ratified by tonight, but it sounds to me like they gave up on this without really trying. You have to wonder what kind of negotiation efforts will be put forth to get a new agreement in place at all. One year and counting………

Posted by: dlhaze1 | March 4, 2010 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Told you.

Posted by: Rypien11 | March 4, 2010 12:56 PM | Report
Not done yet. There's going to be a lot of competition for Dansby.

My wish list for FA includes an OT(Pashos?), an OG(Hadnot?) and a FS. Dansby would be a great addition also.

Posted by: frediefritz | March 4, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

From ESPN:
Whether it is Jason Campbell or a rookie first-round pick behind center for the Redskins, it is instrumental that Washington gets far more from its running game under new coach Mike Shanahan than it did a year ago.

Russell Okung
The Redskins could upgrade their running game by drafting a stud tackle, such as Russell Okung.
With Shanahan in charge, surely the Redskins will switch to more of a zone blocking scheme that he made so famous while he was in Denver. That means the Redskins’ battered and aged offensive line must get much more athletic. To me, that is priority No. 1 for this new regime. Taking an athletic left tackle -- maybe Russell Okung -- with their first draft pick would be a tremendous first step and building block -- much like Shanahan did in Denver with Ryan Clady, whom I consider the best left tackle in the game today. Shanahan has a tremendous reputation for finding smaller, athletic linemen who fit his system in the middle and late rounds, but left tackle is a little different. A true building block is needed up front along with an abundance of later draft picks who fit the zone blocking mold. The Redskins’ run blocking was among the very worst in the league last season. Major changes are needed.

Shanahan also has a tremendous reputation for finding tough downhill runners who are quick to make a read, stick their foot in the ground and make a sharp cut upfield. Once again, he has found such runners in the middle rounds and generally doesn’t tie up a lot of resources with running backs. That leads us to Clinton Portis.

Personally, I think Portis is done. However, he is very tough, is an exceptional pass-blocker and has an understanding of the Shanahan system, in which he was very successful before being traded to the Redskins. Also, keeping him around this season wouldn’t have a negative impact on the salary cap. Those are the benefits and I could see Portis being useful while Washington brought in a third- or fourth-round running back who might take time to get acclimated. But I still come back to how Portis looked early last season and frankly, I didn’t like it. Even then, he looked like a running back who had taken too many hits and lacked the explosiveness that he once had. Remember, this isn’t a particularly big runner and the toll on his body with his aggressive running style is extreme. He is no longer a difference-maker.

So overall, Portis probably has more value to Washington than to any other team in the league, but Ladell Betts and Quinton Ganther might be equally effective runners at this point. Keeping him makes some sense, but I surely would not be up in arms if the Redskins made him the next once-exceptional aging runner to be cut.

Posted by: zjfr2 | March 4, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Dansby should be the Redskins #1 target... Sproles #2... Peppers shouldn't even be on the list, unless they plan to trade Andre Carter & have a wink wink deal with someone else should they acquire Peppers.

Posted by: tony325 | March 4, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

I could see a team with a lower 2nd round pick making an offer for Rocky McIntosh.
~

Posted by: ifthethunderdontgetya | March 4, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Just say "yes" to Dansby.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | March 4, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Pro Football Talk thinks that Rogers will attract some teams. (I am referring to an actual PFT post and I've attached a link to prove that I'm not just making this stuff up like some other unprincipled posters up here.)

"1. Carlos Rogers, Redskins CB: He's had an up-and-down career, but the former top-ten pick would certainly garner interest if made available."

http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2010/03/02/free-agency-preview-defensive-backs/

Posted by: League-Source | March 4, 2010 1:03 PM | Report abuse

Not done yet. There's going to be a lot of competition for Dansby.

My wish list for FA includes an OT(Pashos?), an OG(Hadnot?) and a FS. Dansby would be a great addition also.

Posted by: frediefritz | March 4, 2010 1:01 PM

Not yet, but I've heard it from a couple inside people that he is the guy we're going after... and when we go after guys we usually get them.

Posted by: Rypien11 | March 4, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

There is chaos all over the NFL...You got to love it.
Go Skins!

Posted by: skinsfan0524 | March 4, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Not yet, but I've heard it from a couple inside people that he is the guy we're going after... and when we go after guys we usually get them.

Posted by: Rypien11 | March 4, 2010 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Hear anything about Rolle?

Posted by: PAskinsfan17 | March 4, 2010 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Dansby isn't a big enough name for me... its gotta be Peppers... sorry

Posted by: Sports_Guru | March 4, 2010 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Adam Schefter, of ESPN, reports the Oakland Raiders are expected to release RB Justin Fargas before they have to pay his upcoming roster bonus.

Ralph Vacchiano, of the New York Daily News, reports the New York Giants are not expected to sign Arizona Cardinals impending free-agent LB Karlos Dansby because of the money he likely will receive in the open market, according to a team source.

Rick Alonzo, of the Pioneer Press, reports the Minnesota Vikings have offered impending restricted free-agent DE Ray Edwards a first-round tender, according to a source. Edwards would get a one-year deal worth $2.521 million.

Brad Biggs, of the Chicago Tribune, reports Arizona Cardinals FS Antrel Rolle is expecting a contract that averages $8 million annually, according to a source with knowledge of the situation. The source said Rolle has already turned down a contract offer from the Cardinals that averages more than $6 million annually

Posted by: skinfanman | March 4, 2010 1:07 PM | Report abuse

I've really heard nothing (or very little) about the Skins going after Peppers but I have heard they are very interested in Dansby.

And I've heard Chicago is DESPERATE for Peppers (and others) since they traded their draft picks away last year for whiny Jay Cutler.

Posted by: Lisa_R | March 4, 2010 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Pro Football Talk thinks that Rogers will attract some teams. (I am referring to an actual PFT post and I've attached a link to prove that I'm not just making this stuff up like some other unprincipled posters up here.)

"1. Carlos Rogers, Redskins CB: He's had an up-and-down career, but the former top-ten pick would certainly garner interest if made available."

http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2010/03/02/free-agency-preview-defensive-backs/

Posted by: League-Source | March 4, 2010 1:03 PM
-------------------------------------------
If they could convert him into as little as a 3rd and 4th rounder in the draft this year, I think they should bite. It wouldn't be the worse thing in the world to let Tryon, Westbrook and Barnes fight it out for the number two spot this year and multiple draft picks could come in handy to build that offensive line.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | March 4, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Today is kind of like Christmas Eve. Just sitting here wondering about all the shiny new toys we'll have tomorrow.

Posted by: zjfr2 | March 4, 2010 10:32 AM

I would like a Super Nintendo Free Safety ... and I would rather have O.J. Atogwe than Antrell Rolle.

Posted by: dcsween | March 4, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

...I've attached a link to prove that I'm not just making this stuff up like some other unprincipled posters up here.

Posted by: League-Source | March 4, 2010 1:03 PM
================================

Shirley you meant "talented and creative posters"?
~

Posted by: ifthethunderdontgetya | March 4, 2010 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Haven't heard anything about Rolle.

fredie - Pashos and Hadnot are decent, but they're bigger maulers who might not fit the ZBS.

Posted by: Rypien11 | March 4, 2010 1:10 PM | Report abuse

People are so anxious to see a lot of guys dropped.

REALITY CHECK

We have 5 draft picks. Usually, only about 1/2 the picks pan out. So via the draft, we're adding a couple guys. Free agency hasn't been a good to fill gaps -- its very expensive and very hit and miss. Get a guy like Dansby, it won't leave much $$ for all the other spots.

Management needs to prioritize -- it can't be done in 1 year. I counted 15-18 of our top 30 players that will likely change, this year or next.

Example: ARE

He was our #2 WR. Thomas and Kelly were both around 340 yards, ARE over 500. Kelly and Thomas both have injury issues.

There will be plenty of changes, but why create holes where problems don't exist. Use ARE, who isn't pricey, until he gets beaten down the depth chart (unless we're getting Boldin, right Greg?).

Posted by: zcezcest1 | March 4, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

And I've heard Chicago is DESPERATE for Peppers (and others) since they traded their draft picks away last year for whiny Jay Cutler.

Posted by: Lisa_R | March 4, 2010 1:07 PM

Has more to do with Gaines Adams dying.

Posted by: League-Source | March 4, 2010 1:12 PM | Report abuse

Rolle wants too much money.

Posted by: TWISI | March 4, 2010 1:12 PM | Report abuse

I'd take a run at Fargas, if he gets cut...huggy bears kid..you betcha...

Dansby, Fargas, Atogwe, Okung....make it happen cap'n...

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | March 4, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

Let me catch up the posts...

JC...I'll take a first rounder for Jason Campbell

Carlos Rogers should shut his face!

Yes to Dansby...Yes to Peppers...Front four will be unstoppable.

Good Move in tendering Will Montgomery

Posted by: rickyroge | March 4, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

Today is kind of like Christmas Eve. Just sitting here wondering about all the shiny new toys we'll have tomorrow.

Posted by: zjfr2 | March 4, 2010 10:32 AM

I would like a Super Nintendo Free Safety ... and I would rather have O.J. Atogwe than Antrell Rolle.

Posted by: dcsween | March 4, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

completely agreed. If Atogwe is available he's a much better fit, already played for Haslett and all. Personally I want the following to happen:

Cut: ARE, Thomas, Rock, Betts, and Smoot.

Sign Dansby, Sproles, Atogwe/Rolle, Pitts/Hadnot, Weigmann, and Gandy.

Re-sign Jones.

Trade JC for 3rd, trade Carlos for a 3rd.

Draft
1 Clausen/Bradford
2 Pouncey
3 Capers, Brown, Saffold, Veldheer
3 Corner
4 OLB/DE Jason Worlds VA Tech
5 RB Joe McKnight, Toby Gerhart, Ben Tate, Anthony Dixon
7 WR

Posted by: zjfr2 | March 4, 2010 1:20 PM | Report abuse

To hell with Free Agency!!!!


PLEASE DRAFT C.J. SPILLER!!!!! HE'S NOT A REACH FOR A #4 PICK...

HE'S A GAME CHANGER!

Posted by: rickyroge | March 4, 2010 1:20 PM | Report abuse

ls, I'm going to ignore what you're suggesting....however I do suggest that you, ryp, and curz, spend more time viewing the PFT website to ultimately exonerate me of the wrong-doing that you accuse me of....

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | March 4, 2010 1:21 PM | Report abuse

jack, Gerhart will go in the second if not third round...no way he lasts to the 5th...

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | March 4, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Why the hell does Leonard Little's name keep coming up? His age, personal baggage, and non fit for this scheme would make me have serious questions about this new Front Office if he was signed. Dansby would be a better value than Peppers because he can play either inside or outside LB, he's younger than Peppers and would be cheaper than him as well.

Posted by: moseley_brian | March 4, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Bean - I've come around on your PFT posts.... you should break the inevitable Dansby signing 10 hours early...

Posted by: Rypien11 | March 4, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Dansby isn't a big enough name for me... its gotta be Peppers... sorry

Posted by: Sports_Guru | March 4, 2010 1:06 PM | Report abuse

lol

Posted by: Bigfoot_has_a_posse | March 4, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

I loved the quote about A monty, "you have the perfect body for a nose tackle" LOL that guy was the biggest waste of space last season. Four tackles, cmon man.

I'm not feeling the cut Carter to sign Peppers scenario.

I'm over Rock and ARE. I think ARE did a good job but was given $ beyond his skill level, bad mgmt not any fault of ARE.

I think the Cards will match to keep Dansby.

Don't spend on peppers when you got carter and shallaque-po. Don't spend on sproles when you could get Thomas jones, LJ, LT, etc.

Dansbys worth a shot

Posted by: pabrian2003 | March 4, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

jack, Gerhart will go in the second if not third round...no way he lasts to the 5th...

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | March 4, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

I've seen his projections all over the map from 2nd to 6th so that's why I just listed him as an option. I think he will go in the 3rd but who knows if he falls he's a steal anywhere after the 3rd IMO.

Posted by: zjfr2 | March 4, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

zce;

what is this not enough money to go around talk? You heard there is no cap this year yes?

Posted by: Zeebs | March 4, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

People are so anxious to see a lot of guys dropped.

REALITY CHECK

Posted by: zcezcest1 | March 4, 2010 1:11 PM

Tried to deposit it, but it bounced.

Please refrain from raining on the fantasy parade that is the Skins' strongest season, the offseason. The amateur GM committee up here is zeroing in on the perfect fix to all of the team's fully (and over-) analyzed woes (accomplished through another year of blogging) that will result in a 100% chance of winning the Super Bowl. NEXT QUESTION!

Posted by: dcsween | March 4, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse


Today is kind of like Christmas Eve. Just sitting here wondering about all the shiny new toys we'll have tomorrow.

Posted by: zjfr2 | March 4, 2010 10:32 AM


Draft
1 Clausen/Bradford
2 Pouncey
3 Capers, Brown, Saffold, Veldheer
3 Corner
4 OLB/DE Jason Worlds VA Tech
5 RB Joe McKnight, Toby Gerhart, Ben Tate, Anthony Dixon
7 WR

Posted by: zjfr2 | March 4, 2010 1:20 PM |

Angry Old Man Jack--

Look you've gone too far. Santa Claus/Christmas Eve is responsible for free agency and trades of existing players. Santa doesn't have anything to do with the draft. The draft is Easter Bunny. And if you want the ultimate -- change in ownership -- you need to look to the tooth fairy. Punch out a few of your teeth, put 'em under you pillow, and Ted Leonsis will buy the team. Or Ted Lerner. Kinda risky.

Posted by: League-Source | March 4, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

I'd take a run at Fargas, if he gets cut...huggy bears kid..

Yeah, that's what we need, someone with easy access to drugs...

Posted by: daggar | March 4, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

re: the espn quote posted

How can one tell Portis lost quickness behind one of the worst run blocking lines in the league? And how can one tell that at all, are they timing him or just using their brilliant instictual prowess? Hogwash I tells ya.

And Betts? Betts is older than portis had more injuries than portis and is also overpaid.

Loved the stuff about okung though

Posted by: pabrian2003 | March 4, 2010 1:39 PM | Report abuse

And also, i am not necessarily thinking a big FA is a bad thing.

Since there is no cap

A) Shanny can get rid of all those cap eating contracts of old under performers

B) And replace them with new players with big cap numbers.

So it is a zero sum game. our players got us 4-12 last year, and shanny can do anything to get us better.

Do it now b4 the reinstitue a cap

Posted by: Zeebs | March 4, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

This teams needs value, not splash

Posted by: zcezcest1 | March 4, 2010 1:42 PM | Report abuse

beep

Posted by: Zeebs | March 4, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

For the life of me I can't understand why people want to take Okung or any other lineman with this 4th pick. The 1 problem the Redskins have had over the last 20yrs has been QB. Look at the Rams; they took a lineman last year and look at them now. You build around a star QB. Payton has had rookies watching his back 2 years running but he gets them into the right blocking schemes to help out his line. Jason doesn’t have a clue how to read a defense and that’s a huge problem why he's always on his back. Today we had our best line call it a career, now do this. Ask yourself what the hell has he won without that great QB!!!!

Posted by: pikedawg | March 4, 2010 1:45 PM | Report abuse

I want splash. I want Peppers.

Posted by: coparker5 | March 4, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Any personnel moves that do not involve OL are fruitless. This team with CS retirement is on the way to scoring less than 7 points per game.

Posted by: jtrob_1 | March 4, 2010 2:10 PM | Report abuse

The annual buy at team charade begins once again!!!!!

Posted by: oknow1 | March 4, 2010 2:17 PM | Report abuse

"Just say "yes" to Dansby."

Agreed.

Let Mr.Peepers go to another team.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | March 4, 2010 2:21 PM | Report abuse

What about Merriman? Is SD still going to release him? He could be a good fit at ILB since he's lost a bit of explosiveness.

draft Eric Berry first if he's available. Bruce Campbell second round.

Posted by: ryjufox3 | March 4, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

For me, it's a no-brainer that you bring back Ganther. He is far and away the youngest and freshest RB on the roster, he ran pretty well when pressed into action, and as the only one of the 3 that's not a multi-millionaire, he should be hungry. Betts or Portis are gone after this year, if not sooner. Give Ganther his opportunity and take an RB in the 4th or 5th as insurance.

Posted by: Notorious_LMG | March 4, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

ryjufox3, you are mistaken if you think Bruce Campbell will be around in the 2nd round. He was already projected mid-late 1st before having an excellent combine.

Posted by: Notorious_LMG | March 4, 2010 3:01 PM | Report abuse

It should be an interesting day tomorrow. I would expect some new faces with big contracts to be here soon.

Posted by: skinsFan74 | March 4, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

It should be an interesting day tomorrow. I would expect some new faces with big contracts to be here soon.

Posted by: skinsFan74 | March 4, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Dansby - Yes
Peppers - No
one OL FA - yes
Add 2010 picks if possible - yes
Train at Dickinson - yes
Jumbotron - Yes
Draft OL in rd 1 or 2 - yes
Add a QB - maybe

Posted by: MonkMossMann | March 4, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

I'll lay odds that Arizona is right now in the process of putting a tenured contract on him and it will cost the Skins a 1st and 3rd pick to sign 'em.... TOO COSTLY!

If they don't, go get 'em Skins!

Posted by: TKing1 | March 4, 2010 4:43 PM | Report abuse

pikedawg, You should go back and look at the Hogs! They won 3 superbowls with 3 different QB`s! DRAFT O-LINEMEN!!

Posted by: vexed50verizonnet | March 4, 2010 7:58 PM | Report abuse

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