DeAngelo Hall Has Plenty To Play For In 2014
The Washington Redskins have resigned veteran CB DeAngelo Hall to a four-year, $17 million deal with $3.25 million in signing bonuses. Hall, 30, has spent five and a half seasons with the Redskins since signing in 2008. The 10-year veteran was drafted by the Atlanta Falcons in 2004, moved to Oakland in 2008, and was released after eight games in which he then signed with Washington.
Hall has been a staple in Washington's defense since his arrival in D.C. In five and a half seasons, he's started in 80 of his 84 appearances and hasn't missed a game since the 2009 season. He's collected 441 combined tackles, 76 pass deflections, 23 interceptions and six forced fumbles in those 84 games, and went to one Pro Bowl in 2010.
In an interview with ESPN 980's "Inside the Locker Room" on Feb. 19, Hall gave some insight on what contributed to his return to the nation's capital: "Defensively, man, I just feel like we played so bad last year, we’ve got some unfinished business to definitely take care of." He does have a point. In 2013, the Redskins allowed an average of 29.9 points per game, tied for second worst in the NFL.
Hall also expressed his excitement in returning to a defense led by defensive coordinator Jim Haslett that doesn't include former head coach Mike Shanahan watching over his shoulder: "I’m excited after talking to Haslett about the possibility of him being able to just run his defense without anybody in his ear telling him what to call or what not to call. So I’m really excited to see Haz unleash his full arsenal of play calls.
"I mean, he’s been in this league for so long for a reason. It’s not because he’s the best-looking guy; it’s because he can call plays and have a great defense. No disrespect to Mike Shanahan, he’s a great coach, but he liked to micromanage things. He kind of liked his hands on everything."
There were murmurs and whispers of dissent between Shanahan and his players, and Hall may have just proved it.
So with Shanahan gone and Haslett staying, the veteran cornerback was happy to come back. And add in a new head coach that will let the defense be, Hall will no longer feel "handcuffed" when it comes to playing his game.
"Jay [Gruden's] kind of like look, I’m gonna let Haz kind of do his thing," Hall said. "Obviously if I see something that I feel like as an offense we can stop or we can’t stop, I’ll definitely let him know, give him a heads-up on some things to help us get better as team. But Haz is going to get to do what he does."
Even though Hall has hit the age of 30, he hasn't showed signs of slowing down. In 2013, he recorded 78 combined tackles, 13 pass deflections, four interceptions, two touchdowns and three forced fumbles.
The resigning of Hall is huge for Washington. With the Redskins playing atrocious defense in 2013 and a lot of turnover within the coaching staff this offseason, some stability, consistency and experience will be key for the team to turn things around.