September 15, 2019

Washington Redskins: Week 4 Wednesday Press Conference Wrap Up

After the Washington Redskins were forced to put two more players on season ending injured reserve on Tuesday, the team got back to business with their eyes set on a matinee matchup against the Philadelphia Eagles. Here you will find everything you need to know from Wednesday’s practice including what head coach Jay Gruden and starting quarterback Kirk Cousins had to say. For a complete update on all the injury concerns for the Redskins this week, click here.

With Shawn Lauvao done for the season with surgery scheduled to repair tendons and ligaments in his ankle, the competition for who starts at left guard is on. Spencer Long, who took the majority of first team reps to the right of left tackle Trent Williams, is said to have improved a lot since camp according to Gruden. The Redskins head coach made it sound like Long will be given the first crack at replacing Lauvao but will face a tough challenge against the Eagles because they run a lot of stunts and would face off against Fletcher Cox. This does not mean fourth round rookie Arie Kouandjio does not have a chance to start this season, but it might come further down the road once he has fully mastered Bill Callahan‘s scheme. No matter which five players are lining up to protect Cousins, the starting quarterback said he has confidence in them all.

On game planning the Eagles fast paced offense, Gruden put it frankly that although they have tempo it is still the same stuff everyone else in the league runs. It was clear by last week’s performance, that the Eagles even if without DeMarco Murray for the second week in a row, have a high octane offensive unit. Last year, the Redskins got into a shootout with the Eagles that they eventually lost, but if without DeSean Jackson and in possible messy conditions, they are no longer fit to fair well in the same situation this year.

Jay Gruden has continued to instill his confidence in Kirk Cousins after probably his worst performance on the season. Gruden is simply looking for “gradual improvement and for [Cousins] to run the offense”, in essence by a game managers and help out with a few nice plays here or there.

Cousins started off with a familiar story that he was happy that the team moved the ball with a lot of positives to build on in spite of the loss. Although correct, at some point Cousins has to deliver in key situations when the game hangs in the balance. The Michigan State product said that on his first underthrown ball to Jordan Reed last Thursday that he did not want to overthrow the tight end that had won off the line of scrimmage “so much”. Later in the game, Cousins chalked up the underthrown ball, understandably, to the cover zero blitz.

With regards to the two interceptions he threw against the Giants, similarly to what he said immediately after the loss, Cousins thinks that you still have to take some chances during the course of the game to be successful. Cousins is right that you cannot get “gun shy”, but not all of his interceptions can be laughed off as calculated risks where the defense made a better play. In my opinion, Cousins had no reason throwing the first interception when Amukamara was in prime position to cut off the route.

As a quick point on Hurricane Joaquin which is expected to make landfall right around kickoff on Sunday and begin bringing torrential downpours starting Friday, Cousins says that passing the ball will not be the most difficult part. The center to quarterback exchange whether it be under center or in shot gun, which may be used more as a result, formation will be the trickiest. Cousins plans on dunking a football in a bucket of water and then practice both throwing and receiving the football from Kory Lichtensteiger on Thursday.

About Neil Dalal

Neil Dalal is a Staff Writer for District Sports Page covering the Redskins, Wizards, and Maryland Terrapins. Neil grew up in Silver Spring, MD and attends the University of Maryland. Neil has loved everything related to the Redskins, Wizards, Capitals, and Terrapins since he was eight years old. However, he favors the Orioles, as he started watching baseball before the Expos moved to DC. You can follow Neil on Twitter @NeilDalal96.

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