In November, 2010, a member contacted me by PM and asked for my thoughts on how I'd go about building our roster. I started a five-page thread in response entitled "Planning for a Redskins Dynasty." I have linked it at the bottom of this page if you would like to review it.
One of my principles was that we should not use free agents as gap fillers until we had 11 core players. I defined core players as: starters on the offense or defense with at least average ability (proven not potential), who can be expected to be here, under contract, in three years.
I asked posters to help me identify our core players. We started by identifying those that Mike Shanahan had inherited:
Core Players selected by the group who were on the roster prior to Jan, 2010 (currently contributing in bold)
(Fred Davis wasn't a starter)
Core Players selected by the group November, 2010
In 2010, we identified players with the potential to emerge as Core Players in 2011: Barnes, Lichtensteiger, Riley, Kerrigan, Jenkins, Hankerson, Helu. Out of the seven, Ryan Kerrigan, our first round pick and Perry Riley have made the grade.
Currently, our core players would be:
Possible (If they return to full health):
Unless we wear burgundy glasses, it's easy to see that the Shanahan roster-building program isn't on a dynasty pace. It seems to me that he's doing a much better job of finding free agent gap fillers than Vinny did (Cofield, J.Wilson and Bowen*). We might have more depth, but we aren't adding quality starters fast enough to do anything more than maintain the core level that
Mike inherited. [*Bowen and Riley were added to my list of core players as a compromise]
We now have the important QB position filled, but the cost was high. That cost makes it less likely we can add to the core in 2013 and 2014.