Will the Redskins make a play for Brandon Marshall?

With the dust starting to settle on the Donovan McNabb trade, the talk in our nation’s capital is beginning to shift to what the ‘Skins will do for an encore.

While the acquisition of McNabb certainly gives Washington a big piece to the puzzle, this is still a franchise that has produced only two winning seasons over the past ten years (2005, 2007).

So how about landing a top-flight receiver to pair with your brand-new Pro Bowl quarterback?

That’s the idea Jason Reid of the Washington Post floated Tuesday morning when he raised the notion of the Redskins possibly swinging a trade to bring wide receiver Brandon Marshall to town.

“Now that Washington has a quarterback in McNabb that coaches think can help the team win right away, it makes sense that they might immediately chase after a receiver to complement him,” writes Reid. “While Marshall-to-the-Redskins has been a soft rumor for weeks, don't be surprised if it gains traction in the two weeks leading up to the draft.”

Marshall—a restricted free agent that was hit with a first-round tender this offseason—has been one of the most productive wideouts in the NFL over the past three years.

Since 2007, Marshall’s caught 307 passes (second in NFL) on 505 targets (1) for 3,710 yards (6) and 23 touchdowns (12). He’s also caught 25 passes for 25 or more yards, which ranks 16th in the league over that time span.

In contrast, the Redskins have had only one 1,000-yard receiver in the last three years (Santana Moss, 2008).

And it’s not like McNabb wouldn’t support the move. In his eleven NFL years, the best statistical season the new Washington quarterback ever produced was in 2004—the year the Eagles signed wide receiver Terrell Owens.

McNabb put up a career year in 2004, completing 64% of his passes (career best) for 3,875 yards (2) with 31 touchdowns (1) and eight interceptions. He also posted his best single-season quarterback rating (104.7) and played in his only Super Bowl.

Yes, we all know about the rift that formed between McNabb and Owens afterwards, but that doesn’t change the fact that Philly went 13-3 (their best record in franchise history) and played for a world championship.

Bringing in a big-time receiver would also give the ‘Skins flexibility with the No. 4 overall draft pick, which could be used on Oklahoma State offensive tackle Russell Okung.

The problem with this equation is that the ‘Skins would have to get creative in a trade for Marshall if they don’t want to give up any more draft picks.

But the 26-year-old has made it clear he doesn’t want to stay in Denver, and the Broncos have made it known they are willing to trade him.

Leaving us with the question, “Will Washington strike again this offseason?”

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