O.J. Atogwe Signs Five-Year Contract With Redskins

The Redskins have signed free-agent safety O.J. Atogwe to a five-year contract, getting the deal done just before a lockout. Atogwe, formerly of the Rams, was eligible to be signed after being released after the season.

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O.J. Atogwe Will Have A Significant Impact On The Redskins Defense

Matt Bowen knows a thing or two about playing safety for the Washington Redskins. He played strong safety in D.C. from 2003-05. And he thinks that adding O.G. Atogwe will be a big boost for the Redskins, according to a story he wrote at National Football Post. He thinks that Atogwe will be a good scheme fit, and he will upgrade the secondary as a whole.

Start with LaRon Landry and work our way to the corners. I view Landry as one of the top five strong safeties in the game, but he can play too aggressive in space. Keep him near the line of scrimmage and use him creatively as an edge blitzer, plus in his zone drops. You can do that with a legit free safety in the middle of the field. From the perspective of the Redskins’ CBs, this allows Haslett to play more man coverage—and take more risk—because you can funnel WRs to the middle of the field (and sit on routes) when you have a free safety that displays range. Without question, Atogwe is a an upgrade at the FS position, but it also upgrades the secondary as a unit.

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O.J. Atogwe Signs With Redskins For Five Years, $26 Million, According To Report

The Redskins snuck in a last-minute signing before a likely NFL lockout takes place, signing former St. Louis Rams free safety O.J. Atogwe to a five-year contract. The deal is worth $26 million, which is a few million less than a contract Atogwe signed with the Rams last offseason before being released in January, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter of television.

If so, that is pretty fair market value for one of the better safeties in the league. Atogwe has fallen off since a breakout 2007 season, but is still a ball-hawking safety that is fairly paid at just over $5 million a season. He is also significantly better than incumbent Kareem Moore, and no draft picks were sacrificed to get him.

Atogwe is also very familiar with defensive coordinator Jim Haslett, who coached him in 2007 when he had his best season. He should combine with LaRon Landry to form one of the stronger safety combinations in the NFC.

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O.J. Atogwe Signs Five-Year Contract With Redskins

As the NFL and NFL Players Association work furiously up to the 11:59 p.m. deadline before a lockout, the Washington Redskins have made a free-agent move to shore up one of their weaknesses. The team has signed safety Oshiomogho "O.J." Atogwe to a five-year contract, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. The news has been confirmed by the team.

Terms of the deal are not clear at this point, but Atogwe would immediately step in and likely start at free safety over incumbent Kareem Moore.

Atogwe, who will turn 30 next season, was eligible to be signed before the new CBA came into play because the St. Louis Rams chose to release him earlier in February. He had just signed a five-year, $31.6 million extension last summer, but evidently the Rams chose to move on without him. He came in for a workout earlier in the month and was impressed, but chose to delay his decision to weigh his options. He is familiar with defensive coordinator Jim Haslett for his time in St. Louis.

Atogwe's best season came with Haslett in 2007, when he had eight interceptions. 

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