The Washington Redskins invited veteran receiver Donte Stallworth to the team’s three day mini camp that started Tuesday. Stallworth, 32, was with the team in 2011 and opted to sign with the New England Patriots in 2012. Although Stallworth did not start any games during his tenure with the Redskins — he played in 11, averaged 14 yards a catch (22 receptions) and had 2 touchdowns. The Washington Redskins also handed Stallworth the ball a couple times. So there’s several ways the team could use him.
“He impressed me today,” coach Mike Shanahan said after day 1 of Stallworth’s tryout. “After today, hopefully we’ll get to sign him here in the next couple days.”
Donte Stallworth has had quite the off-season. On March 16th, Stallworth and his girlfriend suffered severe burns when a hot air balloon they were riding in struck power lines in Florida. “In that moment, I thought my eyes would close and I’d never wake up again,” Stallworth told sports publicist Rebkah Howard, who wrote a story on Stallworth’s account for FoxSports.com. “I’ve played professional football for 10 years, and I’ve never been carted off the football field,” Stallworth recalled telling the paramedics. “Now, after a couple hours in a hot air balloon, I’m getting airlifted off a farm.” Now, almost three months later, Stallworth is healthy and ready to play football again.
In May, Stallworth had an interesting run-in with the CIA. “Taking that pic in my avi, I came eerily close to being sent to #GuantanamoBay,” Stallworth wrote on twitter. “Lucky for me, he was a #Redskins fan and gave me a pass!” Stallworth said he was sitting in front of the headquarters for more than two minutes before they rolled up on him and asked, “what are you doing here?” Then Stallworth said he was asked why he was taking pictures in front of the sign. “That’s when I told buddy, I live not far from here, I play for the #Redskins (yes, I pulled that card), and I love my country, Stallworth wrote on Twitter.”
Now, Stallworth is eerily close to becoming apart of the Washington Redskins’ organization again, joining a pretty crowded position. The Redskins currently have ten receivers on their roster. Several being undrafted free agent signings. But what Stallworth brings to the table is good short area quickness and polished intermediate route running skills. He is, for the most part, exclusively a slot receiver. But is more than capable to slide outside for an occasional deep post or nine route.
Coach Shanahan praised receiver Leonard Hankerson Tuesday calling his skill set “rare” because he can play all three receiver spots. It’s a make or break it year for Hankerson — who, for the first time is going through the complete motions of pre-training camp work. He’s healthy and it’s time for him to turn into the guy he’s hyped up to be.
According to NFLPA records, the Washington Redskins are around $1,413,440.00 in available cap space. Which is not much, but it’s enough. A Stallworth signing seems likely, and it would be a good fit. He fills an area that I believe the Redskins don’t have much depth at behind Santana Moss. But with the different intricacies of the offense, everyone has to be versatile.
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