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Sonny on RG3: 'He's very gifted'

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Sonny on RG3: 'He's very gifted'

By Tarik El-Bashir
CSNwashington.comAlthough Sonny Jurgensen hasnt had the opportunity to sit down and talk to Robert Griffin III yet, the Hall of Fame quarterback got the chance to study the rookie during mini camp last month at Redskins Park.And, its safe to say, Jurgensen liked what he saw from the Washingtons touted first round draft pick.This is exactly what the Redskins need, Jurgensen said. Hes very gifted. Hes such a tremendous athlete. Ive never seen anyone so quick playing that position.I think, the former Redskins great added with a smile, hes going to have a great year.Jurgensen made the comments Friday afternoon at Landsdowne Resort, where he and nearly four-dozen fellow Hall of Famers gathered to support Bobby Mitchells charity golf tournament. The 22nd annual event benefits the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and, on Sunday morning, will be open to the public in exchange for a 5 donation.While athleticism is the first characteristic that stands out about Griffin, its only part of what will make him successful as he transitions from the college gridiron to pro ranks, Jurgensen said.Hes smart enough to understand just ask anyone who knows him, he added, asked whether he believes the Heisman Trophy winner can cope with the hype thats already been heaped upon him. Hes from a military family. He understands theres a lot of work that goes into making everything happen.Griffins biggest challenge, Jurgensen said, will be remaining patient in the pocket and straddling the fine line all dual threat quarterbacks have had to walk, particularly early in their careers.The thing he has to do, as a young quarterback, is let the game come to him, rather than trying to take over the game, Jurgensen said. And thats always tough when youre as gifted as him.When youre paid to throw the football, its when do you let your legs take over? he continued. Its something that quarterbacks like Steve Young, Randall Cunningham and Michael Vick had to figure out.Theyre paid to throw the ball but when they cant find an open receiver, theyve got a reserve and then take off running. He doesnt want to make his living running with the football; he wants to make his living throwing the football and leading this football team.Speaking of throwing the football, Jurgensen said Griffin does it as well as anyone hes watched in recent seasons.I was very impressed with the velocity he had on the ball, his arm strength, the quickness of his passes, Jurgensen said. Also -- something you dont normally get with a young man -- is the touch he has on the ball. He has excellent touch on the ball on crossing patterns, laying it over to the tight end on the deep crossing patterns that youll see Fred Davis run.Jurgensen also said the acquisition of wide receivers Josh Morgan and Pierre Garon will take some of the pressure off Griffin because they can use their veteran savvy to get open and make plays after catching the ball.They will be helpful, Jurgensen said before pointing out that the offensive line will be equally as important to Griffins success. If they can protect him the offensive line will come under a lot of scrutiny now because they have to protect him.

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Need to Know: The Redskins appear to be set at center

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Associated Press

Need to Know: The Redskins appear to be set at center

Here is what you need to know on this Wednesday, February 21, 21 days before NFL free agency starts.

I’m out this week so I’ll be re-posting some of the best and most popular articles of the past few months. Some may have slightly dated information but the major points in the posts still stand. Thanks for reading, as always.

The Redskins appear to be set at center

Originally published 12/19/17

Chase Roullier might have been the Redskins’ fourth choice to play at center this year. But he could be snapping the ball for Washington for a long time.

Kory Lichtensteiger, the starter for the previous three years when healthy, retired. Veteran backup John Sullivan departed as a free agent. Spencer Long started six games this season before knee and quad problems pushed him to the sideline, elevating the rookie Roullier into the starting lineup.

The sixth-round pick started three games before breaking his right hand at some point during the game against the Saints. That’s his snapping hand and him finishing that game was an underrated act of courage this year. But he was out for three games before returning against the Cardinals on Sunday. Jay Gruden was pleased with his play. 

“Chase did good. He did good,” said Gruden. “It was good to see him back in there. His snaps were outstanding and handled the calls and play well.”

That was good but standard praise. What was interesting was what he said next.  

“I like Chase’s progress right now,” he said. “I think he is going to be a very good center for a long time here. It was a great pickup for us in the draft.”

It appears that you can at least pencil in Roullier as the 2018 starter at center, if not put him in with a Sharpie.

Where would this leave Long, who is slated to be a free agent in March? The Redskins could let him walk and go with the younger and cheaper Roullier. They also could sign him to be their starting left guard. That job has belonged to Shawn Lauvao. But Lauvao also is a pending free agent and he is 30 and he has missed large chunks of two of the last three seasons with injuries. When he missed the last 13 games of the 2015 season, Long went in at left guard and played well.

If that happens, that would give the Redskins a starting offensive line consisting entirely of players drafted by the team and with only Trent Williams over the age of 27 in Week 1 of 2018.

Regardless of what happens at left guard, it looks like Roullier will be the man in the middle for 2018 and beyond.

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

Timeline  

Days until:

—NFL Combine (3/1) 8
—NFL Draft (4/26) 64
—2018 NFL season starts (9/9) 200

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New free agent Doug Martin unlikely fix to Redskins' woeful run game

New free agent Doug Martin unlikely fix to Redskins' woeful run game

News broke Tuesday that the Tampa Bay Bucaneers released former Pro Bowl running back Doug Martin, and while the name certainly triggers value, his play of the last two seasons should calm the excitement. 

Since a 2015 season where Martin rushed for 1,400 yards and averaged nearly 5 yards-per-carry in 16 games, Martin has been suspended, undergone substance abuse rehab and missed games due to injury.

In the last two seasons, Martin has played in 16 of 32 games, rushed for 827 yards and averaged less than 3 yards-per-carry.

Over his six year NFL career with the Bucs, Martin has only played two full seasons. Those two seasons were great, in 2012 and 2015, but the other four have been largely disappointing. 

RELATED: WHAT SHOULD THE REDSKINS DO AT RUNNING BACK?

The Redskins averaged just 3.6 yards-per-carry last season, and could definitely use a boost in the run game. It's entirely possible Washington might look to upgrade their offensive backfield this offseason, either in free agency or in the 2018 NFL Draft, but Martin does not look like the player to help. 

Early in the 2017 season, it appeared the Redskins run game might be a strength for the offense. After a disappointing effort on the ground to open the year in a loss to the Eagles, the Redskins rushed for at least 111 yards in their next three contests, including nearly 230 yards on the ground in a Week 2 win over the Rams. 

Injuries undid the run game, however, as Rob Kelley got hurt and the offensive line lost players, too. Over the course of the season, rookie Samaje Perine sustained minor injuries and Chris Thompson was lost for the year with a broken leg. 

Going into 2018, Kelley, Perine, Thompson and Kapri Bibbs are all on the roster and expected for now to stay with the team. That's yet another reason why the Redskins are likely to stay away from Doug Martin.

RELATED: 2018 NFL MOCK DRAFT 5.0

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