The Redskins cut him before free agency, but made it clear he could return. And that’s what DeAngelo Hall did on Monday night, a team source said.
Hall agreed to a one-year deal to rejoin the Redskins, solving one of their remaining holes. Washington has talked to free agent corner Antoine Winfield. Hall’s return doesn’t necessarily mean Winfield would not sign with the Redskins. But the difficult part for Washington will be freeing up enough cap space to make it happen. The only way to do that would be to either release another player, restructure a contract — which the Redskins do not like to do — or have another player take a pay cut. They’ve done that with two other players this offseason: receiver Santana Moss and defensive end Adam Carriker.
Hall’s deal is worth $2.25 million; he would have counted approximately $8 million against the salary cap had the Redskins not cut and eventually brought him back. Hall could not be reached for comment, but told 106.7 The Fan that he has not yet signed his contract.
“The whole point of free agency is to test the market to see if anything’s better out there,” Hall told 106.7 The Fan. “I think Mike [Shanahan] made it known that he wanted me [back]. I made it known I wanted to be part of this team. We’ve been down for so long and to finally have something to look forward to … This really is a family atmosphere in that locker room, in that building.”
The coaches will be happy that Hall is returning. They tapped into his versatility last season, lining him up in the slot and occasionally at safety (though mostly in a run defense designed to get the other two safeties closer to the line). They’ve always liked Hall’s toughness. And even though he’s prone to gamble and give up some big plays, he also ended last season by playing two of his better games in Washington.
If the Redskins somehow landed Winfield and kept Josh Wilson, they would have depth and talent at the position. Winfield is excellent in the slot and Hall, though he played inside last season, is best suited for the outside where he’s been accustomed to playing.
Despite the cap penalty and loss of $36 million in cap space over two seasons, the Redskins have only lost one player they wanted to keep this offseason: linebacker Lorenzo Alexander. Hall is the 12th player to re-sign with Washington.