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Need to Know: Callahan says Redskins' running scheme will be diverse

Need to Know: Callahan says Redskins' running scheme will be diverse

Here is what you need to know on this Tuesday, June 23, 37 days before the Washington Redskins start training camp


Read and react

Here are some quotes from offensive line coach Bill Callahan’s media session during minicamp and my reaction to them:

On guard Spencer Long:
“Coming out he was a very mobile, strong, athletic-type guard so putting him into that position and trying to elevate his skill level is challenging for all of us. Hopefully he can hang on to it and compete for that starting spot.”
Callahan and the organization took something of a leap of faith in letting go of Chris Chester last month and essentially handing the right guard job to a player who has all of 18 NFL snaps under his belt. Callahan believes that he can be coached up and get the job done.

On changes in the Redskins’ running scheme:
“I think when you have balance in you running game, whether it’s the gap scheme, the zone scheme, using your draws, using wide zones, or tight zones, or whatever that may be I think it just keeps the defense off balance and it plays to your players’ strengths.”
As with the Cowboys last year, the Redskins aren’t going to go with power blocking plays exclusively. They will mix it up. I would still look for more power than zone because of the last several words of that quote.

More on playing to strengths:
“When you walk in the door you look at the players first and what they do best and you fashion a system around their strengths and their skill levels. That’s what we’re trying to do in this OTA and this minicamp session.”
Or you can walk in the door and replace one starter with a top draft pick and give another one the heave-ho and replace him with a second-year player. They already had Trent Williams, who is scheme versatile, and Shawn Lauvao, who was a fish out of water in the Redskins’ zone-oriented scheme last year. By drafting Brandon Scherff and elevating Long they transformed the line into one that is better suited to just push defenders out of the way. I’d say they adjusted the talent to run the scheme they want.

When asked about the enthusiasm he displays on the job:
“I love it, I absolutely love it. I look forward to practice every day. There’s nothing like it. I’m just an old school ball coach, you know what I mean? . . . I have a passion for this game. I love the game and what it stands for and what it’s all about, what it brings to the table and what it gives to a person and what they learn from it.”
I have to think most NFL coaches also love the game—you couldn’t put in all the hours that they do if they didn’t—but Callahan expresses it better than most I’ve heard.


—It’s been 177 days since the Redskins played a game. It will be 82 days until they play the Dolphins at FedEx Field.

Days until: Redskins training camp starts 37; Preseason opener @ Browns 51; final cuts 74

If you have any questions about what's going on at Redskins Park, hit me up in the comments. And I'm always on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.

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Ryan Grant reportedly signing with Colts after failed physical with Ravens

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Ryan Grant reportedly signing with Colts after failed physical with Ravens

It looks like Ryant Grant has found his new home, again.

After a failed physical with the Ravens, James Jones of NFL Network reports Grant plans to sign with the Colts.


Grant originally agreed to a four-year, $29 million deal with the Ravens, before the team pulled the offer citing an ankle injury that dated to the Redskins' final regular-season game, according to reports.

Baltimore eventually signed Michael Crabtree to a three-year deal, while Grant had visits with the Colts and Raiders.

His agent, Rocky Arceneaux, says Grant has been working out, running routes, and his ankle had been cleared by Dr. Robert Anderson in a second opinion.

In 2017 with the Redskins, he appeared in all 16 games, with 45 receptions for 573 yards and four touchdowns.


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Redskins bring in another defensive lineman for free agency visit, per source


Redskins bring in another defensive lineman for free agency visit, per source

The Redskins hosted Sylvester Williams for a free agency visit on Tuesday morning, per a source with knowledge of the situation. 

Williams played in 2017 with the Titans, logging 20 tackles in 11 starts. Tennessee released Williams this offseason, just one year into a three-year, $16 million deal. 

Drafted in the first round by the Broncos in 2013, the 6-foot-3, 313 lbs. Williams' stat line has never really popped. That isn't uncommon for a nose tackle though, as the job is less about tackles than it is holding leverage against the interior of an offensive line. 


Should the Redskins sign 29-year-old Williams, it would represent the first true nose tackle free agency addition since Terrance "Pot Roast" Knighton joined the team in 2015 from Denver. In an ironic twist, Williams took over at nose in Denver when Knighton left for Washington, and posted his best season as a Bronco. 

Washington restructured its deal with Terrell McClain, reported first by ESPN, which could allow more flexibility to add another defensive lineman. That could come in the draft, but the club has been very active talking with free agents to play on the defensive front. 

On Monday, Johnathan Hankins and Pernell McPhee visited with Redskins officials in Ashburn. Hankins would carry the heaviest price tag, but his past performance would also indicate the most promise. 

McPhee is an edge rusher with enough bulk to play against the run as well. Williams compares more with Hankins, and could be seen as the secondary option.

Among 79 nose tackles Pro Football Focus graded, Williams ranked 36th. For comparison, Bengals star Geno Atkins ranked No. 1, Dontari Poe ranked 26th, former Redskin Chris Baker ranked 65th and current Redskin Ziggy Hood ranked 79th. 

It's also worth noting that since the Titans released Williams, should the Redskins sign the nose tackle, his contract would not count towards the NFL compensatory pick formula. 

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