April 24, 2017

Washington Redskins: Jay Gruden, Joe Barry, and DaShon Goldson talk about Cary Williams’ contribution

(Photo by: Evan Habeeb/ Getty Images)

(Photo by: Evan Habeeb/ Getty Images)

The Washington Redskins are hoping that Scot McCloughan‘s magical talent of picking up players off the street that can contribute immediately continues with veteran cornerback Cary Williams. Jay Gruden previously discussed how the Redskins first year general manager has done a nice job of signing players that can come in on Monday to play the following Sunday, which looks to be the case with the former Legion of Boom member.

Jay Gruden believes Williams has “done well” and does not think “there will be an issue as far as the mental part” of the game.” With Baltimore and Seattle running “very similar coverages” it is just a matter of “calling them [coverages] what we call them” since he’s played all of the pro type of coverages before.

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Washington Redskins: Injury Report prior to Wild Card match up against Green Bay Packers

It still might not have soaked in yet that half of the NFC East teams are looking for new head coaches and that does not include the Washington Redskins. The NFC East champions actually have more important things on their mind: Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers. Defensive backs coach Perry Fewell has been working with an undermanned unit all year and that will likely continue on Sunday. The banged up secondary is just one aspect of the Redskins injury report heading into the playoffs.

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Washington Redskins sign CB Cary Williams to help injury plagued secondary ahead of Wild Card match up

When Kyshoen Jarrett was ruled out on Monday by Jay Gruden, general manager Scot McCloughan must have felt the need to go out and get a veteran talent to contribute to the team’s efforts right away. He has done that all year with the likes of Will Blackmon and Mason Foster and now Adam Schefter reports that former Seahawks, Eagles, and Ravens defensive back Cary Williams will join the burgundy and gold.

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Washington Redskins: DeAngelo Hall gives praise, talks playoffs, and more

The Washington Redskins newest strong safety, DeAngelo Hall did not talk to the media following the NFC East clinching Philadelphia Eagles victory because he thought he had tore his calf. The veteran defender apologized for the non-availability and is happy to say it is much less serious than a tear as he has classified the injury as a strain and is already able to do some light jogging. If healthy enough to play, DeAngelo Hall would “gladly” take game reps to improve his comfort level in the new position; however, he trusts the coaching staff to make the best decision for him and his teammates.

As Kirk Cousins has also said, Hall also believes that Jay Gruden has grown as a coach as the year has gone on. That makes Hall and others “want to succeed and make him look good.” An underrated offseason acquisition on the coaching staff during last summer was defensive backs coach Perry Fewell. Hall called the former Giants coordinator the most detail oriented coached he has ever player for and can see him being a head coach in the future.

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Washington Redskins: Week 12 Monday Wrap Up as the NFC East Division Leaders to Start December

Following the drama surrounding a benched Robert Griffin III towards the tail end of the preseason, who could have possibly seen the Washington Redskins as the team in the driver’s seat of the NFC East heading into December? Not me. Head coach Jay Gruden knows that with five games left, there is nothing that is being taken for granted and preaching consistency during this final stretch.

After Sunday’s first victory of the New York Giants since 2012, it was revealed by players in the locker room that veteran safety DaShon Goldson was responsible for calling a players-only meeting on Saturday night with a theme of “stop losing” according to Pierre Garcon. Monday, Gruden claimed to not have any involvement in or knowledge to such a meeting. “Sounded like it was beneficial” said Gruden about the opportunity to possible air out their issues.

Although Washington certainly has veteran leaders on both sides of the ball from DeAngelo Hall to Trent Williams, Kirk Cousins probably is not in that role as a leader yet though he did draw the compliments of rookie running back Matt Jones yesterday for taking charge. Cousins is “still finding his way” according to Gruden who said the Redskins is “his team.” Gruden believes “the leadership stuff will come” even if being a vocal leader is not his style because he is still looked up to because of “how hard he works.”

On the development of Jordan Reed into an all-around tight end in this league, Gruden started out by stating the obvious that the Redskins “love him in the passing game.” The Gator was given a bit of a pass on his three early penalties yesterday, which Gruden described as “ticky-tack”, but he must “get his hands inside.” Reed is a “huge weapon” on third down and the red zone thanks to his flexibility.

The performance of Washington’s patchwork secondary against one of the best receivers in football, Odell Beckham Jr., and a two time Super Bowl winning quarterback, Eli Manning, was superb. Whether it was veteran journeymen corner Will Blackmon, converted wide receiver Quinton Dunbar, or rookie safety Kyshoen Jarrett, Washington got it done when it counted. Gruden attributes that to the “glue” provided by DaShon Goldson and the “excellent job of just teaching” by Perry Fewell, last years Giants defensive coordinator.

As for a quick injury update, Derek Carrier (high-ankle sprain), Quinton Dunbar (open dislocation on index finger), Andre Roberts (knee inflammation), and Chris Thompson (AC joint sprain) are all listed as day-to-day. Dunbar will probably not require surgery as the Redskins will try a splint as their first option in treatment.

Washington Redskins: Opportunistic defense helps Skins down Giants to take control of NFC East

TEAM CLAIMS FIRST PLACE IN DIVISION AS SCHEDULE MOVES INTO DECEMBER

(Photo by: @Redskins)

(Photo by: @Redskins)

Although much has been made about all games being important by both Jay Gruden and Kirk Cousins, the Washington Redskins were faced with a true must-win situation when they hosted the New York Giants on Sunday at FedEx Field. A win and Washington would be in first place in the NFC East and firmly control their own destiny; a loss would set them looking toward the offseason and three games back of division contention. The Giants streak of five consecutive victories over Washington was snapped as the Redskins will go into December as the NFC East leader after a 20-14 win.

The Redskins led all day, but Odell Beckham, Jr.’s diving, one-handed touchdown catch from Eli Manning with 4:57 left drew the Giants within a touchdown, prompting nerves from all in attendance. But the Redskins were able to churn out a couple of first downs — via Alfred Morris — and when the Giants got the ball back with just 19 seconds left, there was little they could do — though a hook-and-lateral on the last play at least made the final play fun to watch. [Read more…]

Washington Redskins: Week 12 Friday Press Conference Wrap Up

The Washington Redskins have a chance to take the NFC East divisional lead on Sunday with a win at home against the New York Giants. In a “one-game season”, according to head coach Jay Gruden, a loss would mean a three game deficit for Washington and a possible early offseason. On an extended Friday practice to account for the shortened Thanksgiving day effort, Gruden addressed the media before getting ready to host the rival Giants.

Gruden expressed his hatred to losing a “good player” in Chris Culliver yesterday in another “unfortunate” and “fluke” injury that seem to be striking the Redskins the most recently. With Bashaud Breeland ill, while Washington hopes it is “just a 24-hour bug”, the team will be forced to rely on the likes of converted receiver Quinton Dunbar and recently promoted corner Dashaun Phillips from the practice squad. Gruden hopes that defensive backs coach Perry Fewell‘s “schooling” of the Redskins depth will pay off while DeAngelo Hall and Kyshoen Jarrett can both return to the majority of their playing time coming at corner.

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Washington Redskins: Week 4 Friday Press Conference Wrap Up

After the last practice before the Washington Redskins take on the Philadelphia Eagles on what is expected to be a wet Sunday, Jay Gruden and offensive coordinator Sean McVay took questions from the media.

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Washington Redskins: Monday Wrap Up After 24-10 Victory over Rams

The big news from Jay Gruden today had nothing to do with the Washington Redskins impressive 24-10 victory over the St. Louis Rams yesterday. Instead, it had to do with the Redskins waiving former second round pick David Amerson just over two years removed from being the team’s top draft selection in 2013. Although this seems like a big deal because it is the highest drafted player the Redskins have ever released, his ineffectiveness has been clear throughout his rookie and sophomore season before finally being given the boot with the position more than stable than when he arrived.

On a more pleasant note, Gruden also talked to the media about the positives of yesterday and also gave an injury update for Thursday’s game against the Giants, which is fast approaching.

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Washington Redskins Minicamp, Day 1 Practice Observations

Today marked the first mandatory offseason practice of the 2015 season and all healthy Washington Redskins players took part including DeSean Jackson, who was excused from portions of the voluntary OTAs. As a reminder, the collective bargaining agreement (CBA) prohibits live contact during minicamp practices as well as the use of equipment pads. Minicamp is a three day set of practices before a six week layoff that build up to the start of training camp starting in the end of July.

Coach Jay Gruden has been nothing of complimentary to his coaching staff and has reiterated that he loves all of their enthusiasm, much of that was on display today. To start the practice, special teams coordinator Ben Kotwica, a holdover from last year, had his unit working on punt and kickoff coverage while the other starters were still stretching out.

New defensive backs coach Perry Fewell was described as a great person that has been productive in all situations according to Gruden. The head coach laughingly conveyed that coming from the Giants, the Redskins might have an edge against the division foe in the coming season. Gruden also spoke about Fewell’s boss’s energy, new defensive coordinator Joe Barry, which he described as “a consistent upbeat, positive influence on our team and he’s always coaching”. Although contact is not allowed, Barry installed a tackling drill that featured shedding a blocker, hitting a tackling dummy, and landing on a large pad. In a lesser known addition to the coaching staff, Assistant Strength & Conditioning/Skill Development Coach Joe Kim was given praise by Coach Gruden because of his past experience in developing the pass rush of the likes of Justin Houston and Tamba Hali.

As Gruden had stated during OTAs, Bill Callahan, new offensive line coach, is effective in his hands-on style of teaching. The lineman guru, who turned the Cowboys line into arguably the best unit in football last year, was under center taking snaps during positional drills to get a perfect view of his unit’s progress. In case you missed it, the current starting offensive line with Trent Williams currently sidelined is (from left to right): Tom Compton, Shawn Lauvao, Kory Lichtensteiger, Spencer Long, and Brandon Scherff.

Per usual, starting quarterback Robert Griffin III headlined talks both on and off the practice field. Griffin has shown noticeable improvement in his reads since a miserable performance throughout the season last year. When given the time, Griffin surveyed all of his options and make the right reads and accurate throws to his receivers. During 11-on-11 scrimmage, he hit Pierre Garcon for a 15-yard gain, while hitting DeSean Jackson along the sidelines during 7-on-7 drills to beat newly acquired corner Chris Culliver. Griffin later had a 70-yard touchdown bomb to Andre Roberts during the one minute drill; granted Baushad Breeland fell down in coverage, but the former offensive rookie of the year may have missed that read last season.

Coach Gruden continued the same tune that Griffin has been getting a little better each and every day and that is exactly what they ask from him. Griffin was described as starting to have confidence in the pocket by “doing a great job of exhausting all of his progressions, playing the quarterback position with good fundamentals”. Gruden did admit that it is likely that Griffin’s second go-round in a more complex system has helped his development. The second-year head coach went so far to call Griffin a “very gifted quarterback” and chuckled when explaining that “Robert’s going to be Robert” when the pocket breaks down insinuating the use of the former track star’s mobility.

There was little to talk about in the battle for the backup quarterback job. Kirk Cousins was given the opportunity to start with the second unit in 11-on-11 drills, but it seems to be alternating from back in OTAs so do not read too much into it. Cousins did a solid job when practicing as he repeatedly put the ball where it needed to be. The Michigan State product also showed his fleet of foot by avoiding a miscommunicated blitz and completing the play. Cousins’s lone miscue was missing rookie receiver Colin Lockett, who tipped a pass into the bread basket rookie corner Tajh Hasson for an interception.

Colt McCoy was also efficient in dissecting many of the undrafted free agents the Redskins brought into camp. Both backup signal callers received help from their receivers, Ryan Grant and Roberts, who made tremendous grabs to make their QBs look good.

One of the hardest things to watch with the Redskins last year was the self-inflicted wounds that just made the game so heart breaking. Gruden is having it none of that this year because he knows you cannot go from the bottom to the top without perfecting what is in your control. If a defensive back dropped a potential interception during a positional drill, they did push-ups. If an offensive lineman had a false start, they ran a lap around the field and were replaced on the ensuing play.

Injury Updates:

  • Those players who are already rehabbing from injury will NOT practice during minicamp, but home to be back by the start of training camp at 100 percent.
  • DeAngelo Hall went through positional drills with comfort. The veteran was held out of the scrimmages for precautionary reasons. During the 7-on-7 and 11-on-11 drives, Hall worked on the side simulating dropping into coverage, cutting and then catching passes.
  • Silas Redd has started to turn a few heads during practice; on one instance he had an excellent cut to get to open field. However, the Penn State product tweaked his ankle and will be held out of the rest of minicamp. That could open the door for Chris Thompson to secure a position as the third string running back behind Alfred Morris and rookie Matt Jones.
  • Trent Williams (left ankle), Jordan Reed (knee procedure), and Ryan Kerrigan (knee scope) were all non-participants during practice but are all expected to return for training camp.

Important Dates:

  • Minicamp runs through Thursday, June 18.
  • Training camps starts on Thursday, July 30 in 44 days.
  • Travel to Cleveland for first preseason matchup against the Browns on Thursday, August 13 in 58 days.
  • Season and home opener against Miami Dolphins on Sunday, September 13 in 89 days.
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