Monday, February 21, 2011

O.J. Atogwe to Visit Skins Today

(He's been a major problem for the Skins over the last few years, could Atogwe be the solution at FS in 2011?)
 Another visit for another cut player as the Redskins will meet with former Rams FS Oshimogho Atogwe today according to ESPN's Howard Balzer. It's not a bad move if the Skins sign him. He's 29, is a solid tackler and has good hands for interceptions. I know in the last three season when the Skins have faced the Rams, he's been a major thorn in the Skins' side. He also has worked with Jim Haslett, so at least Haslett would know if/where Atogwe could fit in the Skins scheme (thus we wouldn't have the round peg in the square hole situations that the Skins currently have with a few players on the D).

Of course, it again comes down to money. To leave St. Louis, the Skins would probably have to pony up something close to the $8 million bonus that he was due with the Rams (not counting a base salary as well). Also, Atogwe has mentioned that he would like to return to the Rams and two other teams may be interested in his services (Bills, Vikings). What the Redskins don't need to do is to get into a bidding war with this being a pretty decent free agency class and with the Skins having much bigger needs at other positions.

I will remind the Skins fan base and opposing fans again that the Skins have changed their ways in how they sign players. If a player comes in for a visit, it doesn't mean that he'll be in Burgundy and Gold by the end of the day. It doesn't even mean that he'll be with the Skins. I like it. It's called due diligence. It gives the team an opportunity to look at a player that they might think will fit with their plans. Plus, it gives the team an opportunity to gauge the market for other players. Otogwe isn't the only free agent FS out there (or will be out there once a new CBA is in place). So, expect to hear the same old spending money jokes and that the Redskins are a place where players get paid and their careers go to die, but know that Bruce Allen and Mike Shanahan play the game much differently than their predecessor Vinny Cerrato (at least so far during their tenures here).

Speaking of Bruce Allen, I finally got around to watching the Inside the Redskins show that aired on WRC 4 a few weeks ago. There was a good interview with Allen and Larry Michael. While I already knew much of the information that was discussed in the interview, there was a good tidbit about the Skins having in depth scouting reports on every NFL player that I wasn't aware. Makes sense I suppose since you could see any NFL player play against your team at any time (thanks to free agency and trades) and there may be a player you want to go after in  free agency or through a trade. You can watch Inside the Redskins online over at The Official Blog of the Washington Redskins (aka Redskins Blog by Matt Terl).

Links to more on Otogwe's visit:
Washington Post (Mike Jones, Redskins Insider)
Pro Football Talk
Otogwe's stats (via NFL.com)

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