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Allen: Redskins Did Not Target Peppers

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Julius Peppers may have been the marquee free agent in a thin market but the Redskins never reached out to the pass-rushing defensive end who reached a contract agreement on Friday afternoon with the Chicago Bears.

Asked if the club approached Peppers, formerly of the Carolina Panthers, Redskins general manager Bruce Allen said, "No, we didn't," during an exclusive interview with Redskins.com.

Despite the rising tide of media guesswork in the days before free agency commenced, the Redskins sat out the pursuit of Peppers, who also had offers from the New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles.

"There are so many rumors before free agency starts and then afterward there's speculation," Allen said. "We divided out our staff and went after the players we think will fit what we're looking to accomplish this season."

Peppers, who has 81 sacks in eight seasons, wasn't included.

Peppers has said he wanted to play outside linebacker in a 3-4 defense, though that is not the way the Bears line up.

The Redskins have only committed to saying they are looking at 3-4 and 4-3 alignments without publicly declaring themselves in either camp.

If the Redskins utilized a 3-4, they could employ as rush linebackers Brian Orakpo and Andre Carter.

Orakpo had 11 sacks in 2009 to lead all rookies and he earned a Pro Bowl berth.

Carter, who played linebacker in the San Francisco 49ers' 3-4 before joining the Redskins and primarily playing defensive end, also had 11 sacks last season. He has 63.5 sacks in his nine-year career, 31.5 of those in four years with the Redskins.


Larry Weisman, an award-winning journalist during 25 years with USA TODAY, writes for Redskins.com and appears nightly on Redskins Nation on Comcast SportsNet. Read his Redskinsblitz blog at Redskinsrule.com and follow him on Twitter.com/LarryWeisman.

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