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Back healthy, Brandon Scherff's focus remains on the field

Back healthy, Brandon Scherff's focus remains on the field

Entering the 2019 season, guard Brandon Scherff is in the last year of his rookie contract. With no extension done yet, his future after this year is still up in the air. 

While offering him an extension is probably the right decision for the Redskins, offseason reports stated that two sides are far off in the negotiation process. As training camp kicks off, the integral part of Washington's offensive line gave an update on how things are moving along. But in Scherff-type nature, it was of few words.

"It's coming along," Scherff told NBC Sports Washington's JP Finlay.

The reasoning for the vague information isn't just because Scherff is a man of few words to media, but due to the fact that his priorities currently lie elsewhere. Though the off-the-field situation will continue to carry on, his focus has shifted to his on-the-field work with football back in full swing. 

The future is important to him, but 2019 is all that is on his mind currently.

"I don't have a deadline. I'm here for one more year and that's all I can control right now," Scherff said about the status of his negotiations. "I got an agent for a reason. He just says throw everything toward me and just worry about playing football."

Playing football is something Scherff has been chomping at the bit to get back to. After his 2018 season was shortened to just eight games following a torn pectoral injury in Week 9, having to sit at home and watch his team for the remainder of the campaign was frustrating.

But now he's back, healthy, and excited to be doing the only thing he's ever wanted to do.

"It's a dream come true to be out here with pads again," Scherff said. "I've lived this dream since I was a kid and it's kind of cool just to see it become a reality again."

A new season also gives Scherff the opportunity to block for some new guys. The Redskins quarterback competition is still a long way away from a winner, but Scherff won't be pushing for a specific decision. 

No matter who ends up under center, he'll do his best to make sure no opposing defenses get to him.

"We got three really good quarterbacks behind us and we're just trying to block for whoever they put behind us," Scherff said. "That's the goal here and we're all trying to win as a team."

Besides getting back to football, Scherff also has another role he's excited to focus on: being a dad. With a son who will turn two years old in September, having him join in on the training camp experience has been fun. Especially because being away at work has shown him just how much love his son has for him.

"Amazing, he just got down to camp yesterday," Scherff said on how fatherhood is going. "Came up and hugged me and when I left he started crying. Felt good."

As for the athletic future for the newest member of the Scherff family, it doesn't look like football is in the cards just yet.

"Probably be a golfer," Scherff said about his son.

Scherff has a passion for golf himself, though he just made the switch from Walmart to custom clubs. For a big guy, he says he's still got game.

"My golf game is decent," Scherff said. "A lot better than you think it is."

As long as he can help the offensive line thrive, no one will mind what he shoots on the course.


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VIDEO: Dwayne Haskins connects with Antonio Brown over and over in offseason workout

VIDEO: Dwayne Haskins connects with Antonio Brown over and over in offseason workout

Redskins fans will devour any video of Dwayne Haskins throwing the ball that they can get their hands on these days. 

But on Wednesday, footage emerged of Haskins throwing bomb after bomb to Antonio Brown. 

Yep. That Antonio Brown.

Haskins has had, and posted about, many offseason workouts the past few months, and most of the time, those workouts have featured teammates like Terry McLaurin and Kelvin Harmon.

On Wednesday, however, the former Steelers, Raiders and Patriots pass catcher was on the same field as the Redskins quarterback. And they made some sweet, sweet (defender-less, pass rush-less) music together:


As seen on Haskins' own Twitter, there were some other notable names in attendance besides Brown. Bills wide receiver Stefon Diggs, former NFL wideout Chad Johnson and Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith all got in some work as well. 

Is this the space where you'll find analysis on whether the Redskins should sign Brown? Nope.

Is this the space where you'll get a critique of Haskins underthrowing the Pro Bowler a time or two? Nah.

But is this the space where you'll see appreciation for one really talented person chucking a ball really high and really far to another talented person? Yes. All of the yeses. 

Those videos are fun, those videos are interesting and those videos are cool. Try not to take too much away from them other than those things, as difficult as that may be.


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Nick Sundberg thinks NFL should be cautious, follow MLB and NHL's lead in preparing for 2020 season

Nick Sundberg thinks NFL should be cautious, follow MLB and NHL's lead in preparing for 2020 season

As the NFL continues to work toward creating a plan that allows the 2020 season to start in a safe and effective way amid the coronavirus pandemic, numerous players, coaches and league officials are tasked with brainstorming the best possible solution. Among them is Washington Redskins long snapper Nick Sundberg, as the special teams veteran is the team's player representative for the National Football League Players Association.

With the calendar turning to June and OTAs and other training sessions delayed, the pressure to make a decision on how teams can work together in person continues to rise. Sundberg understands the concerns but believes the best option at this point is to not rush into anything.

“I think to be cautious is the biggest thing. I don’t want to rush into anything," Sundberg told the Redskins Talk Podcast. "Especially since we have time on our side right now, we’re not missing games today, we’re months away from that.”

Sundberg is correct in saying that time is a valuable resource for the NFL right now. Unlike other professional leagues, each passing day isn't a delay of the regular season or playoffs. Leagues like the NHL and MLB are itching to get back and salvage lost seasons, football isn't there just yet as game action isn't in jeopardy until August.

Therefore, Sundberg thinks the best course of action at the current moment is to observe what the other leagues do in the coming months. They'll be back to work first, and the NFL should see how things play out and learn from successes and failures. 

From there, the NFL would have a clearer picture of what could really happen when football returns. If the results are positive, the league can follow suit. If not, it will be up to Sundberg and company to re-work the policies done by others to create more progress in the future.

“If it were me leading our approach, I would create a blueprint from the MLB and the NHL. I would wait to see what they do and see what works and what doesn’t," Sundberg said. "Compare and contrast the two leagues on how they went about the situation of getting teams in the facilities, how they went about practice, who was allowed in the building, how they went about games.”

“I would try and model, take what they do and make it better if we can. Unless they just roll out a perfect plan, then that’s our blueprint," Sundberg added.

Besides examining policies put in place, Sundberg understands the importance of looking at numbers and trends. It's one thing to see how the other leagues go about having players and staff together on and off the field, but it's another to see what the virus does in that situation. 

"Track data over a month, month and a half, six weeks," Sundberg said. "Let’s see how many players contracted, how many coaches, how many front office and staff members and that sort of thing.”


Real-time studies based on what happens when other sports return will largely dictate what the NFL can do, but Sundberg also understands that football isn't the same as other sports. When training camp begins, rosters are a lot larger than what baseball and hockey teams carry. Certain measures may be effective for those groups of players, but what happens when a full football franchise needs to be accounted for?

Additionally, contact is a necessary element of the game. At some point, teams are going to need to run drills where players block and hit each other and it won't be able to be avoided. How does the league prepare for that level of closeness? These are all things that Sundberg and others in the Players Association have to consider when laying the groundwork.

“For us, it’s so interesting because we have 90 guys on the roster right now and we have such a big organization, you know," Sundberg said. "You can’t have 10 guys over there, 10 guys over there, 10 guys over there. You can spread out on the fields, but at some point we have to come and do some one-on-ones. Guys are going to be breathing in each other’s faces.” 

Safety for players, staff and others involved in football operations is essential, but it's not the only factor that goes into decision-making. As recent negotiations in the MLB have shown, contracts and payments will determine how the season plays out. The NFL is no different.

As Sundberg explains, NFL players are typically paid in season, as game checks and incentives make up their contract. That isn't necessarily a concern right now as the belief is that all games will be played, but there are other stipulations in tentative plans that Sundberg and other players don't agree with.

“Some of the things I’ve heard I haven’t fallen in love with," Sundberg said.

Specifically, a proposed idea on how to handle players who contracted coronavirus was not a procedure he was a fan of. During the podcast, he noted that there was a suggestion that those with the virus would be played on a two-week disabled list, rather than the Injured Reserve. However, coronavirus would be viewed as a non-football injury. In that instance, teams would not be obligated to pay the players who ended up on the list due to coronavirus.

Clearly, that wasn't something the players were going to go for.

“There’s no way a player could get the virus at work and then you say it’s a non-football injury, right?" Sundberg explained.

The long snapper's insight into how the NFL is handling the unclear future of the 2020 season has shown that a lot still needs to be done, but only time will tell how that happens. Other leagues will potentially return soon, and that can help the professional football league in its efforts to come up with the best course of action. However, tough football-specific decisions will still be on the table.

The stress and uncertainty of the time can be a lot, but it's not something Sundberg is shying away from. He was elected to help do what's best for his team and other players around the league, and he's looking forward to fulfilling that promise.

“I think there’s a lot of work that needs to happen moving forward before we even get to the point of stepping on the field for a game," Sundberg said. "But I’m kind of looking forward to cyphering through it all and seeing some of the creative things that guys that are put in place to do that have come up with.” 

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