The Washington Redskins pulled a surprise move last week when they awarded former West Virginia star Pat White a spot on their initial 53-man roster which meant the team will carry four quarterbacks.
For White a second-round pick by the Miami Dolphins in 2009 the roster spot represented a big step in the right direction as he continues his quest to resurrect his career after being out of football from 2010 to 2012.

It’s rare that an NFL team carries four quarterbacks on its 53-man roster but not entirely unheard of. The Redskins in the past three seasons have carried three two and three quarterbacks respectively. But this year they have Robert Griffin III Kirk Cousins Rex Grossman and White even though that fourth quarterback spot could have been used for another position player.

The Redskins kept White however because the coaching staff considered him one of the best 53 players.

“It’s tough to keep four quarterbacks but it’s really staying true to our philosophy. We did believe he’s one of our best 53” Kyle Shanahan said echoing what Mike Shanahan said on Monday. “When you’re having a guy [lower on the depth chart at a different position] – most of the time those guys aren’t going to dress anyways but you want to keep the better player. You’re usually deciding between guys who aren’t going to dress and we thought Pat played really well. He’s really only been playing quarterback since the end of January February taking those three years off. He’s gotten better each week that he’s been here. I think he’s made some huge strides and I think he can still get a lot better.”

Kyle Shanahan said that White would have likely been placed on the Redskins’ practice squad instead of the roster had he been eligible. But White has a full season of experience accrued and couldn’t be placed on the practice squad.