Linebacker Junior Galette has signed a one-year deal with Washington, the team announced Friday. Galette was released by the New Orleans Saints on July 24 following an offseason arrest and the surfacing of a video which shows a man reported to be Galette striking a woman during a brawl. Galette will reportedly earn the minimum this year, and Washington will have the right of first refusal next year, according to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network.
The aforementioned video was posted in March 2013, but the connection to Galette wasn't really established (in public) until recently. Galette's offseason arrest was for domestic violence, though the charge was later dropped. The woman involved in that incident filed a civil suit the same day the charge was dismissed.
In addition to those issues, Galette was also arrested in early July and was found to be driving with a suspended license and without proper tags. He was charged with three misdemeanors in the stop.
Despite all of this, Galette has had no trouble being vocal about his release and how the Saints have made a big mistake in releasing him. Whatever the case, the Saints let him go less than a year after he received a four-year, $41.5 million contract so they obviously felt strongly about the move they were making.
Washington general manager Scot McCloughan wasn't dissuaded from signing Galette and told CSN Washington that he met with the pass rusher and was convinced that he's sincere about his efforts to restart his career in a new uniform.
"[He's] not a bad guy. All players have issues. We all have some kind of issues. We've all made mistakes. I don't repeat offenders. I don't want the guy that I know is not going to be a good guy to bring into our locker room."
"What you always read in the media and hear in the media is not always accurate," he continued. "We did our investigation. We were thorough, thorough, thorough. [We talked] to the league office, other players and coaches in the league. This guy we feel very comfortable with going forward. Very comfortable."
Galette is an excellent player on the field but it's unclear what kind of punishment he'll face from the league for his off-field incidents. Last season, he totaled 45 tackles, 10 sacks and three forced fumbles.