ASHBURN — Redskins cornerback DeAngelo Hall said Wednesday that he has restructured his contract to give him a better chance to stick on the 53-man roster.
Hall, 33, tore his ACL in Week 3 last season against the New York Giants. He has played in just 17 games over the last three seasons. He also tore his Achilles tendon twice in 2014. Hall was due to make $4.25 million as a base salary in 2017, the final year of his contract, and his salary-cap hit is $5.062 million.
“I’m surprised it hasn’t broke yet,” Hall said. “We worked something out. I’ll let them leak all the details. We did work something out.”
Hall began adjusting to free safety from cornerback in 2015 and was making progress at that position, according to Washington coach Jay Gruden, before the knee injury struck. But his rehabilitation will continue well into the summer and Hall said this week that while he’s able to “move, run and cut” it could be well into training camp before he returns.
“It depends how my body progresses,” Hall said. “As an old dude I would love to say later [in camp]. But who knows? If I feel good I’m not going to not go out to practice just because I’m an older guy. I want to get out there and get this work.”
Added Hall: “I’ve always been a guy who felt like, when it’s my time to go, it’s my time to go. If I can’t go out there and make a play, they’re not going to keep me around for my smile. When I can’t do what they’re asking me to do, I’ll be out of here. But they still feel like I can play. I still feel like I can play.”
For now, he’s playing the role of coach. Hall attends meetings and watches intently from the sidelines during offseason practices. If he can’t participate, he at least wants to remain part of things. No Redskins player has been around longer than Hall, who was acquired in a trade with Oakland midway through the 2008 season.
“[Hall] has kind of been a mainstay here. He kind of keeps the boat from sinking from time to time,” Gruden said. “There’s some volatile people in that defensive back room from time to time and he’s a calming guy. He’s been a great leader for us. Unfortunately for him injuries have shortened his season. Hopefully we’ll be able to get him back at a later date, but if we don’t have him back when we want to, at least he’ll be in the room and still have a major influence on the team and the defense.”
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