The newest Redskins player is less surprised to be in Washington than he is to no longer be in New England.
Reche Caldwell, who led the Patriots with a career-high 61 catches, 760 yards and four touchdowns last season, was one of New England’s final cuts this month after the offseason additions of fellow receivers Randy Moss, Donte Stallworth and Wes Welker.
“They signed all those receivers, but I didn’t think it would be like that,” Caldwell said yesterday, a day after signing with the Redskins. “They said they [signed Moss et al] because Chad Jackson tore his ACL in the AFC Championship and Troy Brown was getting older. They said that I would be inactive some weeks so they [cut me] because they knew I could play somewhere else.”
Caldwell talked to the New York Jets, but his workout at Redskin Park on Tuesday was his first since being released. While Antwaan Randle El had a career game in the opening victory over Miami, he had a down year in 2006. No. 1 receiver Santana Moss has had just two big games since Week 4 last season and No. 3 receiver Brandon Lloyd has been a bust.
Caldwell, 28, is still adjusting to associate head coach Al Saunders’ playbook and rarely has played special teams, but he knows he belongs in the NFL.
“I took a big step last year playing a whole season [as a starter] injury-free,” said Caldwell, who missed most of 2003 and 2004 with knee and wrist injuries for the Chargers. “I’m just glad to be a part of this organization.”
With reserve safeties Pierson Prioleau (hamstring) and Vernon Fox (groin) questionable for Monday’s game in Philadelphia, the Redskins re-signed safety Omar Stoutmire.
One of Washington’s final cuts on Sept. 1, Stoutmire had re-joined the Redskins in March after playing last year in New Orleans. Stoutmire, 33, played in Washington in 2005.
The Redskins also re-signed running back Marcus Mason, who played at Georgetown Prep, and added him to the practice squad.
Thinking of Everett
Middle linebacker London Fletcher played the past two seasons in Buffalo with Kevin Everett. So Fletcher was devastated to learn on Sunday that the tight end might be paralyzed from a spinal cord injury suffered on kickoff coverage in the Bills’ season-opener.
“I was totally shocked and saddened,” said Fletcher, who has been in contact with a couple of Bills about Everett’s situation. “I’ve been in prayer a lot for him and his family. He has had some movement, so I was very encouraged by that. … Kevin’s a very resilient young man. If anybody can overcome this, he’s a guy who can.”
Fletcher said that Everett’s injury has made him contemplate what he and hundreds of players do every week.
“It’s a game and it’s our job, but we’re putting ourselves in harm’s way,” Fletcher said. “In Kevin’s case, not just a career-threatening situation, but a life-threatening situation. We get paid a lot of money to do this, but there’s no amount of money in the world right now that Kevin wouldn’t give to be able to just walk.”