As players take their final breaks before training camp, we will take a look back at the new faces from this offseason and what we've learned about them, football and otherwise, so far.
Today we'll focus on cornerback Orlando Scandrick:
1. He has the most experience out of any player on the defense.
Scandrick enters his eleventh season with a secondary that is looking to build off a strong campaign last season in which they ranked No. 9 overall in passing yards allowed. With the return of former fourth-round draft choice Montae Nicholson, the ceiling for growth on what is already a good secondary is quite high.
The NFC East has arguably the most competitive set of starting quarterbacks in the league, with Carson Wentz, Eli Manning and Dak Prescott facing the Redskins a total of six times a year.
Of course, the primary storyline that surrounded Washington's defense this offseason was improving the interior line and run defense, but the secondary knows it still has its work cut out for them. Scandrick's longtime experience in Dallas will certainly help.
2. He joins the Redskins as a former division rival.
Scandrick spent the first 10 years of his career becoming one of the main faces on the Dallas Cowboys' defense, and certainly wasn't welcomed with open arms when he and his former teammates arrived at FedExField. He was selected in the fifth round of the 2008 NFL Draft, and has started 69 games over the course of his career in Dallas.
"I did not see this coming, I didn't have this worked out," Scandrick said. "This is not one of the places that I thought I would land. It was one of the places that was very interested when I was released and I'm fortunate and I'm excited. I had a great meeting with the coaches, great meeting with Bruce Allen. I had a great conversation with Mr. Snyder after I signed, so I'm very excited."
Even with his release earlier this offseason, it's a credit to Scandrick's skillset that he was able to spend a majority of his career with one team. The Boise State product's durability certainly played a key role in his tenure with Jason Garrett's side, as he only missed 18 games in his 10 seasons with the team. However, after suffering a back injury last season, and the Cowboys looking to freshen up their secondary, the timing felt right for Scandrick to find a new home.
"Yeah, I definitely seen it coming," Scandrick said. "When you've been in one place so long and you get an influx of youth, I knew eventually that they would move away from the older players. I watched all of my other teammates go out the door and sign with other teams and I was the last one standing. I knew eventually it would be me next."
3. He loves to travel.
There are certainly perks that come with spending 11 seasons in the NFL, one of those being free time in the offseason to explore the world. Scandrick has traveled to South Africa, Mexico and Jamaica in just this offseason alone, and seems to enjoying the natural beauty of these destinations.
4. Head coach Jay Gruden appreciates his experience.
While the Redskins' secondary has already established a fairly strong connection with a handful of veterans working together, it will certainly welcome a player in Scandrick that can share his experiences that can make them all better. There are things that the Torrance, Calif., native can share that he may have picked up on when watching players like Josh Norman and Quinton Dunbar the past few seasons.
"Just having an experienced guy who's been through a lot, he's played corner and nickel. He communicates the defense very well and is a calming factor for those guys," head coach Jay Gruden said. "When formations change and coverages might change, all that good stuff, it's good to have a guy like Orlando who's been there, done that and can communicate with the young guys. So he's done very well, and I've been impressed with the way he's stood out in practice."
In addition, Scandrick will certainly be able to share some insight with his new teammates on how the Cowboys plan to attack the Redskins' secondary. That isn't to say that the Cowboys will use the same techniques to move the football on the Redskins' defense, but even one recommendation from Scandrick could affect the course of what will be two major games in the NFC East this season.
"He brings great experience to the defensive back room, but he also helps the offense in the way he sees things and communicates with us, maybe things we can do better as far as attacking certain coverages," Gruden said.
5. He should be used on both the inside and outside of the secondary.
One of the primary ways Scandrick has been able to extend his NFL career more than 10 years is because of his flexibility as a defensive back. While in Dallas, the Boise State product did not solely go against the opposing team's top flight wide receiver, as he also was tasked with defending the shifty slot receivers like Jamison Crowder.
This luxury is something that defensive coordinator Greg Manusky is planning to utilize as well, mainly because it can disrupt a receiver from picking up on how a corner reacts to certain situations. It's like going against a pitcher in baseball; once a batter sees him for the third or fourth time, they get a feel for which pitch is coming next and thus have a higher chance to hit the ball.
"He's playing outside as a corner, and he's playing as a nickel back inside," Manusky said. "He kind of did that in Dallas over the years that he was there. Smart football player, understands quarters, threes, all that kind of stuff, so from my standpoint, [he is] a veteran guy that can come in and have success."
The Washington Redskins on Monday, March 19, 2018, announced the signing of cornerback Orlando Scandrick. Take a look back at his NFL career.
6. He is very active with his high school football program.
Scandrick attended Los Alamitos High School, located just about a half hour away from Los Angeles, and played as a wide receiver and a cornerback for the Griffins. The veteran cornerback created his charitable organization, "32 Cares," in hopes to better the school's athletic facilities and help local kids in the area.
He donated $15,000 to the school last August, which allowed the football team to acquire new helmets and uniforms.
7. He was a member of the miracle 2006 Boise State team.
Scandrick and his teammates from his sophomore season with the Broncos were the team that put Boise State on the college football map. Led by current Washington Huskies head coach Chris Peterson, the team went 11-0 in the regular season and was crowned champions of the WAC, including a victory over a power-five school in Oregon State.
Their perfect regular season led them to the Fiesta Bowl against Oklahoma and three major names from the NFL today; DeMarco Murray, Gerald McCoy and Redskins star left tackle Trent Williams.
The veteran defensive back made his presence felt in the game, recording six tackles and a pass defense. Of course, the Broncos shocked the world running a Statue of Liberty play on a two-point conversion in overtime, giving them a 43-42 victory over one of college football's "blue bloods."