September 23, 2020

Washington Redskins Waive Former Second Round Pick David Amerson


The big news out of Redskins Park today was that the Washington Redskins waived 2013 second round pick David Amerson in order to make a spot on the 53 man roster for defensive end Frank Kearse, who was sent down in order to make room for ILB Terrance Plummer. Amerson was due to make around $2.5 million over the course of this and next season but now will be a dead cap hit of just about $640 thousand. UPDATE: Amerson was claimed off of waivers by the Oakland Raiders just about 24 hours after he was released. It is not that Amerson cannot develop into a very good player as Gruden put it, but it was almost certainly not going to happen here.

In the first of two year without having a first round selection in the NFL draft due to the trade to draft Robert Griffin III, David Amerson as a second round draft pick (51st overall) was the Redskins top pick in 2013. The 2013 draft took place during a time of excitement as the Redskins had just won their first division title since 1999 behind the rookie of the year performance from RG3. There seemed to be little pressure on the Redskins to improve through the draft during the final year of the Shanahan regime with current President Bruce Allen acting as General Manager.

David Amerson had a sensational sophomore year (2011) at North Carolina State where he tied Dre Bly’s record for the most interception in a season in Atlantic Coast Conference history with 13. Amerson would go on to break Bly’s record with two more picks in the inaugural Belk Bowl. He received the Jack Tatum Trophy for the best defensive back and was named a first team All-American. Amerson was projected to be a top 10 selection in the 2013 draft when becoming eligible and possibly the first defensive back chosen ahead of the likes of Dee Milliner, Kenny Vaccaro, and Eric Reid.

Even behind a mediocre junior season, Amerson had the size, physicality, and athleticism of a prototypical starting NFL defensive back. He was aggressive in jumping routes and as a run stopper. His receiver like hands were attractive to the Redskins who definitely did not want another Carlos Rodgers who could not catch an interception for his life. The Redskins took a risk on Amerson and hoped he would return to his 2011 form when they spent their second round pick on the NC State product. Looking back others that were available and potentially made sense as a fit for the Redskins (not including Eddie Lacy after a franchise year from Alfred Morris) are Jamie Collins, D.J. Swearinger, Tyrann Mathieu (if willing to take the risk on off the field behavior), Terrance Williams (RG3’s former teammate), and Keenan Allen.

Amerson seemed like one of the lone bright spots in a poor 2013 season when he recorded his first interception in Week 4 and returned it for a touchdown. After another interception later that year in Week 9, Amerson would not record another pick as a Washington Redskin in the 25 games that followed. The turnovers were probably the least of his problems however, Amerson never developed into a capable starting corner in the NFL.

In Week 1 this season when the Redskins were without Bashaud Breeland and veteran corner DeAngelo Hall had to sit out momentarily with a ribs injury, the Miami’s Ryan Tannehill targeted Amerson on seven straight plays directly leading to the Dolphins first score of the game before halftime. Yesterday, Amerson did not play a single defensive down even though the team was without free agent acquisition Chris Culliver. When it became evident that Amerson could not even contribute on special teams as he was called for an egregious illegal block in the back.

All of this culminated with the Redskins waiving Amerson instead of the likes of Richmond product Justin Rodgers and recently signed journey man Will Blackmon. Gruden said that it was time to make a change and pleaded that this move was made because the other guys at the corner back position are playing better. Besides the likes of Rodgers and Blackmon who will likely continue to fill in behind starters Culliver, Hall, and Breeland, the Redskins are also confident in safety Kyshoen Jarrett to also help out at nickle corner if needed. Jarrett has played both safety positions and corner back through much of training camp because of his “versatility” which Gruden was high on today. Jarrett played sparingly at the corner position yesterday.

Although the Redskins only had six selections in the 2013 draft class, four are no longer with the team less than three years removed. Amerson joins the likes of fourth round safety Phillip Thomas, fifth round outside linebacker Brandon Jenkins, sixth round safety Bacarri Rambo, and seventh round running back (a long shot) Jawan Jamison. Only tight end Jordan Reed and speedy running back Chris Thompson remain a part of the franchise. Obviously, Bruce Allen and the Redskins were not the greatest evaluators of talent at the time and also probably did not get the most talent out of the rookies early on, but the hope is that with the new direction under Scot McCloughan things will improve.

For now the Redskins are on a winning streak, so lets enjoy that instead of looking back at past mistakes (which we could do all day).

About Neil Dalal

Neil Dalal is a Staff Writer for District Sports Page covering the Redskins, Wizards, and Maryland Terrapins. Neil grew up in Silver Spring, MD and attends the University of Maryland. Neil has loved everything related to the Redskins, Wizards, Capitals, and Terrapins since he was eight years old. However, he favors the Orioles, as he started watching baseball before the Expos moved to DC. You can follow Neil on Twitter @NeilDalal96.

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