Redskins

Quick Links

Steven Sims has gone from feel-good story to a legitimately dangerous NFL player

Steven Sims has gone from feel-good story to a legitimately dangerous NFL player

In Terry McLaurin and Kelvin Harmon, the Redskins have a rookie receiver who's legitimately become one of the better outside threats in the NFL and another first-year wideout who's starting to show signs of true growth these past few weeks.

What Steven Sims has done in his debut season, though, is more surprising than both McLaurin's stardom and Harmon's recent improvement.

Sims wasn't drafted in April. Instead, he joined the Redskins for rookie minicamp in May, where he stood out, and then made his way down to Richmond for training camp, where he again stood out, and then was used often in the preseason, where he again stood out.

That promising run was enough to earn him a place on the Redskins' 53-man roster. Sims has since played in all 11 games for Washington in 2019 and on Sunday against the Lions, he ripped off a 91-yard kickoff return touchdown. He also has a 65-yard rushing score on his stat sheet.

In just a few months, he's gone from a no-name to a known name. This year is exceptionally light on encouraging developments for the Burgundy and Gold, but Sims is the biggest exception to that.

"He has unique quickness, sudden change," Callahan told reporters on Monday. "Sometimes, I think in the draft what happens is everyone’s looking for the great size and speed, and sometimes guys like Steven get overlooked at times, so it was a good job by our scouting department to pick him up, bring him in and have him excel at what he’s doing right now."

Sims' TD — the franchise's first on a kickoff since 2015 — started off with a bobble. No. 15 told JP Finlay after the game he misjudged the ball when it was in the air and it ended up glancing off of his shoulder and bouncing onto the FedEx Field grass. He quickly scooped it up, however, and weaved through Detroit's coverage unit before bursting up the sideline.

"I've been waiting all year for that," he said.

So far, Sims has 11 catches, six rushes and 26 kick returns. In all, that's 43 touches, with only 17 coming on offense. Guys like McLaurin, Derrius Guice and Adrian Peterson all need their targets and carries, sure, but Sims has done enough to warrant more looks, too.

Back when he was in charge, Jay Gruden would talk about how Sims was still quite raw, and Callahan also mentioned he's going through a "progression." Fortunately, Callahan did indicate on Monday that Sims could become more of a focal point in the Redskins' last five matchups. The interim coach explained that coaches want to put Sims in more one-on-one situations and take advantage of his explosiveness.

One thing that's confusing? The fact that Sims hasn't been given a chance to catch punts yet. Trey Quinn is barely averaging five yards a return at that spot and he hasn't displayed any of the agility or top-line speed that Sims has.

In response to a question about Sims taking that job over, Callahan merely said he's the backup and could have an opportunity at some point. That point should be now.

Regardless, Sims has proven he belongs in the league and, while he may never become a true, every-down wide receiver for the Redskins, he definitely has nailed down a role that could be his for quite some time. People began noticing him in the spring. Now, it's impossible not to notice him.     

"He's an amazing talent," Morgan Moses said. "You get the ball in his hand and you know a big play is going to come."

MORE REDSKINS NEWS

Quick Links

Report: Bill Callahan to join Browns' staff as offensive line coach

Report: Bill Callahan to join Browns' staff as offensive line coach

Bill Callahan was not unemployed for long.

The former Redskins offensive line coach, who served as Washington's interim head coach in 2019 after Jay Gruden was fired following an 0-5 start, is joining the Cleveland Browns staff, according to NFL Network's Tom Pelissero.

The 63-year-old will reportedly serve as the Browns' offensive line coach, a title he has over two decades of coaching experience of.

Callahan served as the Redskins offensive line coach from 2017-2019. He worked his way up the coaching ranks in both college and the NFL as an offensive line coach for over a decade before the Raiders hired him as offensive coordinator in 1998. He was later promoted to head coach in 2002 and spent two seasons at the helm before leaving for the same position at Nebraska.

After a four-year tenure as head coach at the University of Nebraska ended in 2007, Callahan returned to the NFL as an offensive line coach for the Jets. He spent the next 12 years as an offensive line coach for three different NFL teams before he was named the Redskins interim head coach in October.

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports. Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream Capitals and Wizards games easily from your device.

MORE REDSKINS NEWS:

Quick Links

Scott Turner won the Redskins offensive coordinator job over Kevin O'Connell, per source

Scott Turner won the Redskins offensive coordinator job over Kevin O'Connell, per source

There has been plenty of speculation as to why new Redskins head coach Ron Rivera decided to hire Scott Turner as offensive coordinator, and now a source tells NBC Sports Washington the answer is simple. 

Turner won the job competition. 

Many expected 2019 Redskins offensive coordinator Kevin O'Connell to maintain his position when the team hired Rivera as their new head coach earlier this month. That didn't happen. 

As Rivera moved quickly to assemble his coaching staff, the biggest question seemed to be running the offense and working with second-year quarterback Dwayne Haskins. Rivera interviewed O'Connell and Turner for the job, and asked to interview former Giants head coach Pat Shurmur. 

Shurmur declined the interview, and at that point, a source explained that Rivera then made his decision to go with Turner over O'Connell. 

So why Turner? 

Both candidates got their first experience calling plays last year after an in-season firing to the head coach. The results weren't great for either coach, but Turner's game plans involved more play action passing than O'Connell. 

Turner's resume working with Cam Newton and Teddy Bridgewater mattered, as did the plan Turner presented for working with Haskins. 

It's important to note that Rivera had years of experience working with Turner, as well as his father Norv Turner. That mattered too, and one source explained Rivera "believed" in Turner. 

While O'Connell landed in a strong spot as offensive coordinator for the Rams, he won't be calling plays. Coaches don't like giving up control, particularly offensive coaches giving up play calling. For O'Connell, maybe that will change in LA, but it will take time. 

Some Redskins fans have a bad habit of assuming the worst. That maybe Turner got the job because O'Connell passed on it. That's not the case, per multiple sources.

Ron Rivera wanted his guy, and that's why Turner got the job. 

Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports. Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream Capitals and Wizards games easily from your device.

MORE REDSKINS NEWS: