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Redskins' Gruden: Scherff making progress but still struggles


Redskins' Gruden: Scherff making progress but still struggles

The Redskins took Brandon Scherff with the fifth pick in the draft with the expectation that he will be an immediate starter at right tackle that he would and would fortify their offensive line. While it is unlikely that they will be disappointed, he is experiencing some struggles as he adjusts from playing left tackle against Big 10 competition at Iowa to playing on the right side against the best players in the world.

“You know, we saw him at the rookie camp and were excited to see him play for the first time,” said Redskins coach Jay Gruden when asked about Scherff’s progress as the team nears the end of its offseason program. “We moved him over to right tackle and he had some struggles.”

The good thing is that Scherff is taking nothing for granted. After every offseason practice that has been open to the media, including rookie camp, Scherff has been staying after practice to get in some extra work with offensive line coach Bill Callahan. Sometimes there have been other linemen joining in but the one constant is Scherff.

“The thing about Brandon that I’ve noticed already is he takes coaching extremely well. He learns,” said Gruden. “If he has a mistake, he’s going to try to fix it and that’s important for an offensive lineman to study the game and learn from your mistakes. Because you’re going to get beat a couple times by some top-level pass rushers. You might lose a block on a running scheme or what have you.”

Gruden is confident that Scherff has the physical and mental makeup needed to succeed.

“The good thing about Brandon is he’s strong, he has great feet and he really cares about the success of a football play,” he said. “With all that in mind, size, strength, takes coaching well, has a great coach working with him. I think he’s going to be fine.”

It should be noted that what the coaches have seen from Scherff in a Redskins uniform so far, both good and bad, has been in helmets and shorts. That limits the evaluation that they can do.

“Unfortunately, offensive line, defensive line and the trenches, you know we’re telling them to come off the ball but it’s more of a thud-ish type thing and you can’t really finish blocks, you can’t really shed people like you want to based on the rules of the CBA,” said Gruden. “It’s difficult for them.”

The pads will wait until training camp opens in Richmond seven weeks from tomorrow. It would not be surprising to see Callahan and Scherff out on the field every day there, just like we have so far at Redskins Park.  

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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.