Redskins Again Make Play for C. Johnson
This in from the Jasons...
League sources said last Thursday that the Redskins made another offer to the Cincinnati Bengals for disgruntled Pro Bowl wide receiver Chad Johnson, offering Cincinnati first- and third-round picks in this weekend's draft for Johnson. In addition, the Redskins are prepared to guarantee Johnson about $21 million as part of a new contract. ESPN today reported the bulk of what we were told last week and were in the process of confirming with sources familiar with the Redskins' ongoing pursuit of Johnson.
As a rule, teams do not have much to say about such things particularly right before the draft and Redskins officials are currently unavailable to comment. However, the team's annual draft luncheon begins at 1 and you can bet this will be addressed. Stay tuned.
As we reported in January, acquiring Johnson is the Redskins' No. 1 offseason objective. Owner Dan Snyder and Vinny Cerrato, executive vice president of football operations, told several head coaching candidates that they sought Johnson to be the primary target for developing quarterback Jason Campbell. The Redskins, however, have been repeatedly rebuffed in their attempts to complete a deal for Johnson.
Bengals owner Mike Brown has told several teams that he will not trade Johnson despite his antics, especially after recently restructuring Johnson's contract to elevate him among the league's highest-paid players at his position. Johnson's agent, Drew Rosenhaus, has a cozy relationship with Snyder and Cerrato and has been working behind the scenes to broker a trade.
With the 21st pick in the draft and nine picks overall, the Redskins, who have many needs to fill, could find it difficult to trade down if the top players they have targeted are off the board when they pick. The Redskins are expected to continue pursuing a deal for Johnson throughout the draft.
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