The Washington Redskins finally get a bit of good news in what has been a tough 24 hours since their preseason win over the Detroit Lions. Their tight end situation wasn’t looking well after losing Niles Paul and Logan Paulsen for the year due to injuries. Many wondered how the team would address the losses at the position, new general manager Scot McCloughan addressed the issue last week by signing former Green Bay tight end D.J. Williams.
In Thursday night’s win over the Lions, it was clear the Redskins were still extremely thin at the position. McCloughan has ties to three NFL franchises in the Packers, the 49ers and the Seattle Seahawks. He signed a couple of players from those clubs during free agency, not in so much that he’s familiar with the player (he is in some cases), but familiar with the folks that drafted said player.
Last night, about 6pm Eastern, news broke that the 49ers and Redskins had agreed to a trade. One of the first to confirm the trade was Matt Barrows, a Bay area columnist.
Hearing 49ers have traded TE Derek Carrier to Washington for a fifth-round pick.
— Matt Barrows (@mattbarrows) August 21, 2015
The 49ers received a fifth round pick (2017) in exchange for the 25-year-old Carrier. Before the start of the season, Carrier received a two year extension to stay in San Francisco. Carrier was viewed as a possible fail safe in case Vernon Davis didn’t rebound this upcoming season, or as a partner for Davis as Vance McDonald hasn’t yet found his place in the passing game.
San Francisco had eight tight ends in camp to start, after this trade they are left with six. Just a few days ago, they traded Assante Cleveland to the New England Patriots. I expected a trade between the two teams because Washington needed help at the position, but I thought it would be Vance McDonald headed over.
A converted college wideout, Carrier can certainly stretch the field vertically. He hasn’t played a ton, but has shown to be durable during the stretches in which he’s been on the field. For the situation that the Redskins are in, his addition certainly can’t hurt. Along with his speed (4.5 at combine), he has quickness to complement it. He’s put on a bit of weight since college, now standing at 6’4 and 241 pounds.
He’s not an outstanding blocker, but he does give good effort. Lastly, he has experience in the league. It’s not a ton, but it’s more than some of the other players at the position.
It’ll be interesting to see how long it takes for Washington to use him and how they go about doing so, but definitely doesn’t hurt when the new general manager has good connections. Especially if they end up with a relatively healthy Jordan Reed this season, both tight ends would have the ability to stretch the field.