The Washington Redskins are entering the busiest portion of the NFLs offseason and the team has been operating for the last few weeks without its general manager. What's more, it appears the Redskins are going to be entering the free agent period without Scot McCloughan in his office. Reports are now surfacing his departure was originally for personal reasons but his stay away from Washington could become permanent in the very near future.

Speculation about lack of return

It turns out that when Scot McCloughan left the Washington Redskins right before the NFL combine, it was because of the sad passing of his grandmother.

That seemed like a reasonable reason why the general manager wasn't with Redskins personnel as they looked over potential draft targets. After all, the GM can talk with scouts and his assistants, as well as review video when he returned.

The plot has thickened around the Washington Redskins though as McCloughan still hasn't come back to work and the NFL's free agency period is kicking off. ESPN recently wrote a story talking about how his absence while the team decides how it wants to add players and cut others appears to be a sign there is something very wrong in Washington's front office.The real question is just how long he can hang onto his job at this point. The draft has been where the Redskins have leaned on him most, but missing the combine could have been a sign they won't lean on him further.

Problems with the President

In and around Redskins country, there have long been rumors that McCloughan and team president Bruce Allen were not the best of friends. If Washington has decided they want to go in a different direction, it's possible they've allowed their general manager to stay away as long as he has to soften the blow when it comes to the players and coaches.

Jay Gruden recently signed a two-year extension with the squad, but that contract could have been handed out by Allen just as easily as McCloughan. At this point, it's just speculation surrounding the Washington Redskins, but where there's smoke signals, there's fire.