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Need to Know: Redskins' Gruden--"Our heart is still beating"

Need to Know: Redskins' Gruden--"Our heart is still beating"

Here is what you need to know on this Wednesday, October 27, four days before the Washington Redskins travel to Minnesota to play the Vikings.

Notes and quotes from Jay Gruden’s press conference

Jay Gruden held his day after game news conference via teleconference on Tuesday afternoon.

—Hey, those of you who have been saying that the Redskins’ season is over and that the remaining games are meaningless! Gruden would like to have a word with you. “I read somewhere after we lost our fifth game that we were playing meaningless games from here on out, which is pretty far from the truth,” he said. “You know, we wanted to come out against Tennessee and get a win, and then obviously come out and compete against Dallas on Monday Night Football and prove that we aren’t dead, you know? We still have a pulse, our heart is still beating, and we have a lot to play for still.”

Colt McCoy underthrew DeSean Jackson on a deep pass in the first half. Gruden said that it was almost impossible to overthrow the speedy receiver. “So we’ve just got to understand as quarterbacks, all of them, they can lay it out there a lot farther than they think they can,” he said. “I think we’ve only overthrown him maybe twice since I’ve been here in practice. It’s pretty incredible. That’s an incredible guy tracking the ball. The first deep one, if he throws it out there, it’s a touchdown, but at least we completed the dang thing.”

—We got used to Mike Shanahan being very non-specific when it came to talking about what was wrong on his team. Gruden laid out exactly what issues he had with McCoy’s performance on Monday. “That’s one, in my mind, if you’re going to critique Colt for his interception, and then the two delay of game penalties, you can’t have as a quarterback,” he said. “You don’t see veteran quarterbacks take delay of games very often.”

—Gruden also stepped up and took the blame for some coaching mistakes. “We had coaching errors— offensively, defensively—that we need to correct also in big games like that,” he said. “That substitution penalty, my not taking a timeout there at the end of the regulation when I should have been standing closer to the ref, those are costly. We can’t have those happen.”

—Gruden said the team’s confidence grew as the game went on, thanks mostly to the defense. “Yeah, you could feel it. I think that really, to me, it stemmed from our defense. Our offense did some decent things—the first half we weren’t very good—but when your defense is flying around, sacking the quarterback, doing what they were doing, it’s pretty exciting.

—Gruden was aware of Jim Haslett’s game plan to blitz hard and often but he gave his defensive coordinator full credit for it. “He dialed them up,” said Gruden. “Sometimes I closed my eyes and watched them but I was ready for them and I had total faith in what they were doing because I saw them during the week and I thought they’d be successful also. So he has total control of the defense and did a great job.”


Today’s schedule: Practice 1:25 p.m.; Jay Gruden news conference and open locker room after practice, approx. 3:00

Days until: Redskins @ Vikings 4; Bucs @ Redskins 18; Redskins @ 49ers 25

If you have any questions about what's going on at Redskins Park, hit me up in the comments. I'll answer all questions as soon as I can get to them. And I'm always on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.

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Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—D-line scoop, Alex Smith's big deal

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Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—D-line scoop, Alex Smith's big deal

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, March 24, 33 days before the NFL draft.  

The Redskins week that was

A look at some of the most popular posts and hottest topics of the week on Real Redskins and NBC Sports Washington.

Free agency update: What's next for the Redskins on the D-line? The Redskins have been casting out lines for defensive linemen since before free agency officially started but they haven’t been able to reel one in. Part of the issue might be that they know that Vita Vea and Da’Ron Payne are likely to be available in the draft. They have to balance spending big on a lineman vs. being able to get one pretty cheap for the next five years.

Redskins make a D-line contract change, gain roster flexibility—Speaking of the D-line, the team negotiated the removal of a salary guarantee for one player to give themselves more flexibility when it comes time to cut the roster down to 53 in September. See the post for details.

Redskins guarantee Alex Smith a whopping $71 million in new contract—In the words of Joe Biden, this is a big f-----g deal. It showed that the Redskins aren’t afraid to pay a quarterback big money if they think it’s the right guy. It should be noted that whether or not they chose the right guy is something that remains to be seen. Although the post shows that it’s plausible for the Redskins to terminate the deal after three years, I anticipate Smith playing out at least four if not all five years of the contract.

Redskins add another ex-Cowboy as they sign Scandrick—Orlando Scandrick has struggled with injuries the past few years and Redskins fans did not greet the news of his signing with great enthusiasm, to say the least. To point out the bright side, his contract is not pricey by NFL terms ($2.6 million cap hit this year, no guaranteed money beyond a $1 million signing bonus) and from what I have been able to gather it’s possible that change of scenery might give him a boost for a year or two.

Tweet of the week

Well before free agency started, I wrote that the Redskins’ top priorities in free agency should be to get extensions done for Smith, Brandon Scherff, and Jamison Crowder. They should have about $15 million to work with after a few more free agent signings and that would be plenty to get all of those extensions done. And if they do score a big free agent signing, it would be worth it to restructure the contract of someone like Ryan Kerrigan to get them done.

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.


Days until:

—Offseason workouts begin (4/16) 23
—Training camp starts (approx. 7/26) 124
—2018 NFL season starts (9/9) 169

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Eagles' Michael Bennett allegedly injured elderly worker; arrest warrant issued

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Eagles' Michael Bennett allegedly injured elderly worker; arrest warrant issued

Philadelphia Eagles lineman Michael Bennett has been indicted on felony abuse for allegedly pushing an elderly NRG Stadium worker during Super Bowl LI.

Bennett was indicted by the Harris County, Texas district attorney's office for injury to the elderly — which is intentionally and knowingly causing injury to a person 65 years or older, according to a press release from the Harris County Sheriffs' Office.

A warrant has been issued for Bennett's arrest.

The 66-year-old paraplegic stadium worker was attempting to control field access when Bennett allegedly pushed her. 

The maximum penalty Bennett faces is ten years in prison in addition to a $10,000 fine.


Bennett — whose brother Martellus played in that Super Bowl for New England — was a member of the Seattle Seahawks during the incident and was in attendance as a noncompetitive player.

The NFL has been made aware of the situation and is looking into the matter, according to Pro Football Talk.

The 32-year-old 10-year NFL veteran could potentially face NFL discipline under the league's personal conduct policy.