December 17, 2018

Washington Redskins: What do Jay Gruden, Kirk Cousins, and Trent Williams think of Kory Lichtensteiger’s return?

(Photo by: Brad Mills/ USA TODAY Sports)

(Photo by: Brad Mills/ USA TODAY Sports)

Despite the highly anticipated rushing attack of offensive line coach Bill Callahan, the Washington Redskins have gotten away from their legacy of a run first franchise. Much of that has to do with losing left guard Shaun Lauvao in the third week of the season as well as center Kory Lichtensteiger after just five games. While Spencer Long has done a decent job when getting rushed into action, after losing his starting right guard spot in the off-season, converted guard Josh LeRibeus has struggled. Now as the Skins get ready to go roaring into the playoffs, they will get the anchor of the offense back as the Bowling Green product is expected to retake his starting role.

Although Jay Gruden did not make it explicitly clear that Lichtensteiger will return to the starting lineup, he feels “good” about his return when asked about his confidence level. Gruden assures that Lichtensteiger has still been fully involved “from a mental standpoint.” Kirk Cousins reiterated the same idea by mentioning that “he’s never left. He stayed in meetings. He’s always at practice.”

The coaching staff planed to keep Lichtensteiger after practice on Wednesday to “bang around a bit to see how he feels.” Gruden appreciates that Lichtensteiger is an extension of the coaching staff on the field, “he’s like another quarterback on the field. Very, very intelligent.”

Gruden also made it a point to emphasize that Lichtensteiger’s snaps are “very good” and probably perfect relative to LeRibeus’. The Redskins center also is strong at coming off of double teams to get to the second level “very quick[ly]” in the run game. The limiting reagent for Lichtensteiger to return will probably be “getting back into football shape” and making sure that his shoulder and arm are back to full strength.

Trent Williams, the Redskins lone Pro Bowl starter this year, called Lichtensteiger’s return a “help” because he is a “talented player, an experienced player, very athletic, just the ultimate competitor.” Williams sees LeRibeus as having positively contributed to the team by becoming experienced and returning to a role of “depth on our team.”

Both Williams and Cousins will not say so openly but are likely relieved that the number of pre-snap penalties, errant snaps (timing and/or location), and missed blocking communications/assignments will trend down in frequency. Right when the Washington Redskins are their hottest and most lethal on offense, they will have an underrated yet extremely valuable members of their unit return.

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.

%d bloggers like this: