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Redskins release Schweigert

- The Washington Times - Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Stuart Schweigert started 39 games at safety the past three seasons for the Oakland Raiders, and the Washington Redskins signed him in June to help bolster their depth at the position.

Apparently, the Redskins needed only two weeks of camp and one preseason game to determine Schweigert wasn't the answer.

The veteran safety was released Monday along with linebacker Danny Verdun-Wheeler. Schweigert's departure was the first surprising subtraction for the team this offseason.

When the 6-foot-2, 210-pound free safety was added as an unrestricted free agent, it was thought the move would allow LaRon Landry to slide back to his original spot at strong safety (Landry had switched from strong to free after Sean Taylor's death).

But the coaching staff liked Landry as a free safety, and Reed Doughty has a firm grasp on the other starting spot. With Landry injured, the team actually gave cornerback Shawn Springs some work at free safety.

Schweigert, who had 107 tackles in 2006 while starting every game for Oakland, did not make any tackles in the team's 30-16 win against Indianapolis, while seventh-round pick Chris Horton was a standout with five tackles, two sacks and an onside kick recovery.

Verdun-Wheeler, a linebacker from Georgia, spent two weeks at the end of last season on the Redskins' practice squad and was re-signed in January.

Replacing Schweigert and Verdun-Wheeler on the roster are safety Patrick Ghee and fullback/tight end Pete Schmitt.

Ghee signed with Washington on May 6 but was released a little more than a month later. He was in training camp last season with Seattle and spent time on Carolina's practice squad.

Schmitt signed with the Redskins as an undrafted free agent out of Wisconsin-Whitewater last year. He was in camp before being cut with an injury settlement Sept. 2, and he did not play the rest of the season.