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Randy Moss deal bad for Redskins, Thomas

October 6, 2010 - 10:11 AM
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If the Patriots couldn't get more than a third-round pick for Randy Moss, Washington will have trouble getting value for unused receiver Devin Thomas. (Photo: Associated Press)

The Minnesota Vikings this morning pulled off a reunion trade for Randy Moss at a very affordable price.

Badly in need of receiver help for Brett Favre, the Vikings had to give up only a third-round pick for Moss, who still has great value, pulling in 83 catches for 1,264 yards and 13 touchdowns last season, but fell out of favor in New England because the receiver wanted a new deal and publically voiced his displeasure.

That deal, along with the San Diego Chargers' non-trade of Vincent Jackson two weeks ago is bad news for both the Washington Redskins and wide receiver Devin Thomas.

The Redskins have had Thomas on the trading block since before the season started. Although physically gifted and still young, Thomas isn't a Mike Shanahan guy for reasons that remain unknown. Maybe Thomas just is not very good, maybe Shanahan doesn't like the way Thomas wears his pants. Who knows?

Through four games, Thomas -- a high second-round pick in 2008 -- has no catches and has been on the field as a receiver for only one play. Instead, an over-the-hill guy (Joey Galloway) and two unestablished guys (Roydell Williams and Anthony Armstrong) have been getting burn.

Thomas has said all the right things (at least publically), and offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan has said he continues to get in practice. But what gives? 

The Redskins so far haven't found any takers for Thomas, who for his career has 40 catches for 445 yards and three touchdowns. And Mike Shanahan hasn't created any type of leverage by repeatedly using Thomas only as a kick returner and saying that the kid won't get onto the field until he is better than the guys ahead of him.

Washington is likely stuck with Thomas. Their asking price for him is unknown, but they definitely won't get any value for him. If teams weren't willing to give up the second and third picks that the Chargers were asking for Vincent Jackson, and if Minnesota only had to give up a third-round pick for Moss, who is even better than Jackson, they definitely won't give anything for Thomas.

So, the Redskins might as well hang on to Thomas. His kick off return average of 28.0 yards a touch ranks eighth in the league, and he didn't do an awful job in the preseason as a receiver, making eight catches for 112 yards and a touchdown.

Meanwhile, the four receivers not named Santana Moss that are ahead of him (including Brandon Banks, who was just brought up from the practice squad)have a combined 12 catches through four games.

If the Redskins hope to get anything more than a swapped sixth- or seventh-round pick, they've got to at least give Thomas a few end-arounds or wide receiver screens.

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