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Washington Exercises Fifth-Year Option On Daron Payne


The Washington Football Team announced Tuesday that it has exercised the fifth-year option on defensive tackle Daron Payne.

The 2018 first-round pick has started 41 games over the past three seasons, racking up 166 tackles (16 for loss), 20 quarterback hits, 10.0 sacks, nine passes defensed, four forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and an interception.

Payne was Washington's best interior run defender in 2020, ranking ninth at his position with a 38% run stop win rate and finishing with a PFF run defense grade of 74.0. He also made seven tackles for loss and forced three fumbles.

But that does not mean he was non-existent as a pass-rusher; in fact, he batted down four passes and tallied three sacks in the regular season. Then, in his first-career playoff game, he was by far the team's best defender with three quarterback hits, two sacks, two tackles for loss and a forced fumble.