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Gibbs' Persuasion Lands Barrow in Washington

Apr 23, 4:21 PM (ET) Email this Story


ASHBURN, Va. (AP) - Peaceful moments can be hard to come by for a football player pursued by coach Joe Gibbs. Just ask free agent linebacker Mike Barrow, who signed with the Washington Redskins on Friday.

"You talk about a little voice in your head that tells you where to go - he was my voice," Barrow said. "Every minute, every day, he called me."

Barrow, cut last month by the New York Giants, chose the Redskins over the Detroit Lions and is expected to replace Jeremiah Trotter at middle linebacker. Barrow said Gibbs' views on family, faith and football swayed his decision, along with his own view that the Redskins are closer to winning a Super Bowl.

"I'm on that back nine," said Barrow, entering his 12th NFL season. "I want to finish strong, like Tiger Woods."

Barrow turned 34 on Monday, the same age as Trotter, who has been a disappointment since joining the Redskins as a free agent two years ago. Barrow said his dedication to offseason workouts have him feeling more like 26 or 27.

"I think I will get tired mentally before I get tired physically," Barrow said. "I feel like I'm in the prime of my life. I've always been a late bloomer physically."

Said Gibbs: "Some guys at 34, they're young. He's a fanatic as far as working out and taking care of himself."

Barrow led the New York Giants in tackles each of the last three seasons, but he was cut last month after he refused to restructure his contract. He began his career with the Houston Oilers, where he played under current Redskins assistant coach for defense Gregg Williams.

Trotter is still on the roster, but he has been given permission to seek a trade. If no deal is made, he will probably be cut after June 1 to save money under the salary cap.

Barrow attended the University of Miami, and he's looking forward to seeing which Hurricanes player - safety Sean Taylor or tight end Kellen Winslow - will be the Redskins' choice with the No. 5 overall pick in Saturday's draft.

"You talk about Quarterback U., Linebacker U." Barrow said. "I always felt like we're NFL-U."

I feel better now about his age, plus Williams knows him, so I understand the intrest - he could help some with teaching the defense to others. It seems Trotter aged some though.:laugh:

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Barrow turned 34 on Monday, the same age as Trotter

Trotter's not near that old is he?

Maybe the writer was looking at Kevin Mitchell's age.

Either way, if we had made this move with anyone other than Joe at the helm, I would be staunchly against it.

Even with Joe back, I am a little sour. I know, however, that this choice was made on character and leadership first. I dont think anyone Gibbs has added to the roster can be painted in any sort of negative light from a character standpoint (well, maybe Clinton, but he's a beast so we'll let that one slide :D ). Hopefully Mike can maintain his work ethic and productivity for the next couple of seasons and help us reach the promised land.

Welcome to DC Mike. Make yourself at home and feel free to strip Tiki and blow up Amani and Kerry at any given time.

Hail Skins.

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Do these people actually do research before doing a story?

Barrow said Gibbs' views on family, faith and football swayed his decision, along with his own view that the Redskins are closer to winning a Super Bowl.

The Mom, God, Baseball and apple pie version kicked up a notch

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Kevin Mitchell isn't even that old.

Wonder if it is wishful thinking, but maybe they'd consider re-inviting Trotter to offseason work and asking about a re-structured contract...It'd be a wicked 3-4 set, and we know Barrow will only be about for one more year, two tops.

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depending how the deal is structured Barrow is probably looked at as a two-year acquisition.

I think he can be very effective for us during that span. He is a physical linebacker who tackles well and plays his assignments.

He is not going to compete with Arrington and Marcus Washington for headlines and highlight reels.

That's what you want to see in a 4-3 middle linebacker.

With the triple layer of Williams, Blache and Lindsay evaluating the linebackers and the changes that have been made, I think barring injury we are well set for our 2004 starters there.

Time to move on now and finish up the DL and S.

We could use another veteran guard as well as it appears Dave Fiore might not make it all the way back.

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Truth is, Barrow has been productive in bad defenses.

Was the defense bad because of Barrow? Who knows. We'll find out if he can play MLB.

Trotter is all but gone.

Williams doesn't have any experience with the 3-4 in a regular fashion, and we do have some experienced players here who can play MLB (Mitchell, whom I have always been impressed with) as a backup.

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Barrow has been on generally good defenses throughout his career. He's been highly productive in good defenses and last year in his first actual bad defense he was more productive than he's ever been. Hard not to like this as a stablizing move.

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