So Daryl Washington has been reinstated. Conditionally.
There’s a lot to unpack here, and frankly, there is only so much that makes sense to do at this point. The Cardinals did not say whether they would be welcoming back the one-time Pro Bowl linebacker who has missed three full seasons. Not yet. Washington was banned from the facility. He hasn’t talked to Bruce Arians or Steve Keim or, most importantly, Michael Bidwill, in a long, long time. At some point — I’m guessing sooner rather than later — that would have to happen for Washington to have any chance of remaining with the Cards.
It’s sticky, of course. However you feel about substance abuse and how it might trouble a person (Washington said when he was first suspended it was marijuana that did him in), his suspension was only supposed to be for a year. He could have come back long before a three-year absence, but he wasn’t doing the things he needed to do to be reinstated. That likely has to be factored in, and the Cards were not happy when this all first happened (“It’s completely unacceptable that Daryl has once again put us in this position,” Keim said at the time.)
But the Cards haven’t closed the door yet. So we will see how it plays out.
— All that’s been done is the path has been cleared. But Washington still can’t practice or play. He still needs further clearance from the league, whether he’s trying to play for the Cardinals or anyone else.
— I’ll admit, I didn’t think there was a chance DWash would come back, in part because I didn’t think he’d be reinstated. A whiff by me, although it had been three years. I don’t think I was out of bounds with that thinking.
— Kent Somers reported that the assault Washington pleaded guilty to will not lead to another suspension. In fact, Kent reports one of the reasons Washington took so long to be reinstated was in part because of that charge.
— As of now, Washington would be slated to make $2.9 million in salary for 2017 — the salary he was supposed to make in 2014, when his contract “tolled.” (Essentially, it froze.)
— Not sure exactly how his contract would impact the cap right now, but even if it had to be absorbed in the short term, I’m guessing the Cardinals won’t wait too long to figure this out post-draft. As of Tuesday, the NFLPA had the Cards with $15.3 million in salary cap space.
Tags: Daryl Washington
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