Johnathan Hankins remains on Redskins' radar

The Washington Redskins haven't had a busy week, with no visits Wednesday and none scheduled for Thursday. But they're still interested in several free agents as they try to fill more holes, especially on defense. Here are some of the Redskins' remaining free agent decisions:

Defensive line

The Redskins have hosted multiple defensive linemen: Muhammed Wilkerson, Johnathan Hankins and Sylvester Williams. They've had interest in others, too. Wilkerson was a risk given his poor play and habits the past two years in New York; big names do not equate to good signings.

The Redskins have remained in contact with Hankins, who visited Monday.

Washington wants to bolster its line, but this doesn't have to be accomplished in free agency. The Redskins must decide if it's worth it to spend a good chunk of money on Hankins -- his contract wishes, as of now, are high -- or select someone at 13, such as Vita Vea or Da'Ron Payne. One of them should be available (Vea could go higher). It's the same decision they faced at running back; there were guys they liked in free agency, but rather than spend $5 million per year on one of them, they preferred to take their shot with a draft deep at running back.

The danger with this: What if someone they like gets picked? Or what if a player at another spot falls to them unexpectedly at 13? They could draft a player they like more, which is fine. But it would still leave them minus the line help they crave. And the craving is real.

The Redskins still have interest in Bennie Logan, but there has been no visit. Hankins visited Detroit on Tuesday, but the Lions signed nose tackle Sylvester Williams on Wednesday.


The Redskins made an offer to Pernell McPhee, who visited Monday. He also met with Atlanta. The Redskins have made an offer to one of their own free agents, Junior Galette, but it clearly wasn't good enough to complete a deal. The hard part for Galette is his age (30) and his past (two Achilles injuries plus off-field concerns). Before free agency began, several league insiders predicted that combination would hurt him. How much of that is fair is irrelevant; teams will use what they can to keep costs low, and the demand has not yet been there for Galette enough to raise his price. He did rush well when given the chance, especially late in the season.

The Redskins have remained in contact with McPhee. If they sign him, McPhee would give them some of what they're losing with Trent Murphy's departure: a bigger outside linebacker (about 270 pounds) with decent length who can help against the run and pass. They could use him in multiple spots as a pass-rusher.

McPhee has missed 10 games over the past two seasons because of injuries, so that's a concern; he had microfracture surgery on his left knee after the 2015 season and arthroscopic surgery on his right knee last training camp. Those issues turned him into a part-time player in Chicago, which is what he'd be in Washington.

Left guard

The Redskins have been quiet here, though it remains a spot they need to fill. Shawn Lauvao, their starter the past four years when healthy, is still a possibility. But relying on him is dangerous considering he missed 22 games over the past three seasons because of injuries. It impacts the performance. A strong backup is a necessity with him.

Former Tampa Bay starter Kevin Pamphile remains unsigned, and there has been some talk of him, though how serious is uncertain, and there has been no visit. The draft offers possibilities, but it's easier to go that route early in the draft and find a legitimate starter if they're able to fill another hole -- defensive line -- in free agency.

Adding a good, young talent here would be wise. (They do have Arie Kouandjio, Kyle Kalis and Tyler Catalina on the roster. Perhaps one develops over the next few years.) They're already paying a lot for their tackles -- Trent Williams and Morgan Moses -- and will have to pay quite a bit to retain right guard Brandon Scherff in two years. Having good -- strong emphasis on this word -- and cheap labor at left guard would be a good way to spread out the cash.