I had no intention of taking a break on my combine reviews, but today was a pretty huge day in the world of the NFL. First, the bad news. The Washington Redskins signed former Rams’ safety OJ Atogwe to a five-year, $26M deal earlier this afternoon. Needless to say, I’m not happy. In addition to being a turnover machine, Atogwe was one of the leaders in the locker room. We were already thin at safety, and now we lost our best player at the position with nobody on the roster ready to step in. I knew it was bad news when he visited the Skins, but I really didn’t think they would do anything before the CBA was resolved. I’m happy for Atogwe that he finally got the long-term deal he has been searching for, but I wish it could have been here. This could be a move that the front office regrets.
Speaking of the CBA, there was an interesting development in talks between the owners and the union today, as the two sides agreed to a 24-hour extension on talks. This whole thing can get a little confusing, but pretty much the deal is that the two sides agreed to use the next 24 hours to work out an extension that is expected to last 7-to-10 days. It’s an extension to work on an extension. Apparently, the owners came to the table with a proposal today, and while it wasn’t a great deal, it was enough to represent a step forward in the players’ eyes. Assuming both sides agree to the 7-to-10 day extension, they will have that time to work on a deal before the players union decertifies. This might not be a giant step forward, but at least things are looking up for the first time in a long time.
In another minor note, the Jacksonville Jaguars decided to part ways with receiver Mike Sims-Walker today. I’m starting to think that getting a receiver in the first round of the draft isn’t going to happen, so the team is going to have to look at some of the free agents out there. I like Sims-Walker a lot, and I would think that the Rams will have at least some interest in giving him a look once free agency begins.