With the signing of veteran Orlando Scandrick along with three young defensive backs in line for bigger roles, the Redskins’ secondary is confident they’re in store for more success this season.
The Washington Redskins secondary was bursting with talent in 2017, boasting a dominant combination of Josh Norman, Kendall Fuller, Bashaud Breeland, D.J. Swearinger and Deshazor Everett at its core. But following an offseason of change, this unit is set to quite a bit different in 2018 with a veteran addition and the opportunity for younger players to take on more prominent roles.
This offseason has seen the departure of several contributors to the Redskins secondary, including a pair of starting cornerbacks. Fuller, an emerging talent in the slot, was sent to Kansas
City as part of the Alex Smith acquisition and Breeland moved on as well, initially signing a deal with the Carolina Panthers before failing a physical. Both were playmakers last season, with Fuller tying for a team-leading four interceptions and Breeland leading the defense with 19 passes defended.
To help fill the void left by Fuller and Breeland, the Redskins signed veteran cornerback Orlando Scandrick, formerly of the Dallas Cowboys and agreeing to terms on a contract extension with Quinton Dunbar.
“Obviously signing Orlando is a big piece,” said Redskins head coach Jay Gruden. “A guy with that type of experience, he can play outside, he can play inside.”
Scandrick will provide a starting option for Washington and potentially act as a bridge while Dunbar and second-year cornerback Fabian Moreau solidify their positions in the secondary.
He will also add veteran leadership to the secondary, edging out Norman as the most experienced member of the position group.
“I’m going to bring competitiveness, leadership, tenacity – just that attitude and just whatever [we] need,” Scandrick said after signing with Washington.
Norman, who is entering his third season with the Redskins, had nine passes defended and two forced fumbles last year. He remains a shutdown player in the defensive backfield despite not recording an interception last season, a statistic that is ultimately a reflection of opposing quarterbacks avoiding him whenever possible.
In addition to the veterans, the Redskins will also look to their younger defensive backs to take a step forward in 2018. Two of their corners, Moreau and Dunbar, are still relatively new to the position. Both are expected to step up and have an impact in the secondary this…