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Time is running out for the long shots to make the Redskins roster

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Time is running out for the long shots to make the Redskins roster

RICHMOND—While most players on the Jets and Redskins dismissed the fight between the two teams as “boys will be boys” and “competitive football”, there was a real downside to the several dustups between the two teams. 

Running back Rob Kelley said that he needs the reps to get ready to play. When players fight it wastes time that could be used to line up and run plays. Add to that the fact that lightning cut the practice short by about 20 minutes and that’s a lot of reps down the drain. 

Kelley is in no danger of getting cut when the roster is reduced to 53 on September 1. But some other players are, and they need every opportunity that they can to make it as hard as possible for the Redskins to cut them. Time is running out for players like OL Kyle Kalis, RB Kapri Bibbs, WR Cam Sims, DL Phil Taylor, S Quin Blanding, S Kenny Ladler, and CB Danny Johnson to push for a roster spot. 

They have today’s padded practice with the Jets and a lighter one tomorrow. Then, after a day off there is the preseason game against the Jets on Thursday night. Since only a handful of starters played in the preseason opener, they are likely to play longer this week. That leaves relatively few snaps for the players on the bubble. 

The team returns to Redskins Park, where most of the focus will be on getting the first-team players ready to play in the third, “dress rehearsal” preseason game. The starters will play at least the first half against the Broncos. Then it’s a short week from that Friday night game to the preseason finale the following Thursday in Baltimore. 

Adding it all up and you have 10 practices left, five of which are likely to be relatively light practices or walkthroughs. Then there are maybe 140 snaps of preseason football that will be available to bubble players. 

It you’ve already started to show ability and consistency in practice and against the Patriots, that’s enough time to make your case to remain on the 53. But with time running out, mistakes will be magnified. A missed block, a blown coverage, or a dropped pass can do great damage to a player’s chances since there will be little time to make a good play to leave a positive impression. 

Time is really running out for the players who are further down on the depth chart. They get limited snaps in practice anyway. Some of them won’t get a chance to play in either the second or third preseason games. There just aren’t enough snaps to go around. 

The players scrapping for a roster spot aren’t completely in control of their own fates. Sometimes all they can do is hope. Over the next two days they will be hoping that the other players got the fighting out of their systems and that the rain holds off so that they can get in a full practice. 

Redskins 2018 training camp news:

-Teammates react: Thompson gets emotional talking about Guice
-Redskins-Jets brawlA dangerous situation

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 and on Instagram @RichTandler

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Bruce Allen answered every question at the Senior Bowl, but he didn't say all that much

Bruce Allen answered every question at the Senior Bowl, but he didn't say all that much

MOBILE — Bruce Allen stood in the pocket and watched as the pass rush came, but like a veteran quarterback, he avoided the pressure and sidestepped the blitz. 

Allen got asked about the low attendance figures at FedEx Field, and maneuvered his explanation into the injured Redskins squad that took the field Week 17.

Allen got asked about the #FireBruceAllen movement and deftly turned the conversation into a discussion on the passionate Redskins fan base. 

Allen did not provide much of an update on injured quarterback Alex Smith or any real contract talks with pending free agents Jamison Crowder, Preston Smith or Adrian Peterson. 

Allen did not provide much of an update on a new Redskins stadium, and there wasn't much information about additions or changes to the front office. 

Pressed why he was the right person to run the Redskins, Allen explained that his passion for the team puts him in the same line as the fans. 

He wants what they want. 

It's true, Allen loves the Redskins and has since he was a child and his father famously coached the team. That still doesn't explain why he deserves to run the team. There were questions about the front office structure and the coaching staff, but the answers were mostly endorsements of the status quo. 

It's also fair to point out that on many contractual matters, Allen might not be able to say much, or it might be wise for him to provide as little information as possible. 

Give Allen credit. 

He's quite good at talking without providing real insight into what he's thinking. That's not on accident, and it is a skill. 

In fact, many executives and coaches around the NFL deploy the same strategy. Coach-speak is famous for providing no information, and few GMs like to give their opposition the slightest clue about their next move. 

What amplifies the situation is the rarity upon which Allen speaks, particularly in group settings. 

Want some good news Redskins fans? Allen said he would talk again at the NFL Scouting Combine. 

That's about a month away — and maybe then, there will be more answers. 


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Bruce Allen does not know why Redskins would expect suspension for Reuben Foster

Bruce Allen does not know why Redskins would expect suspension for Reuben Foster

MOBILE, Ala. — Florida authorities dropped domestic violence charges against Reuben Foster earlier this month, and for Redskins team president Bruce Allen, that should mean no NFL suspension.

Allen said as much when speaking with reporters on Tuesday at the Senior Bowl. 

"The league is still finishing their investigation of it," Allen said. "I don't know why we would expect a suspension, but we'll let the league finish up."

There is precedent for an NFL suspension regardless of legal action. Recent examples include a three-game suspension for Jameis Winston and a six-game suspension for Ezekiel Elliott.

The Cowboys tried to fight Elliott's suspension in the courts, but eventually, the NFL won. Winston and the Bucs did not appeal his suspension. 

Neither Winston or Elliott were ever charged with a crime, but the accusations against both included salacious details and possible sexual assault, and the NFL did not relent in their rulings. 

For Foster, in the last calendar year he has been arrested twice for separate incidents of domestic violence. The first case fell apart when testimony was recanted, and in the second case, charges were dropped. The 49ers released him after the second incident, and Washington swooped in to claim the linebacker off waivers. 

Throughout this process, the Redskins have maintained that Foster would not play for the organization if he was deemed guilty of any wrongdoing.

"Let me be clear, Reuben will have to go through numerous steps including the full legal process, an investigation and potential discipline from the NFL, as well as meetings with counselors associated with the team before he will ever have the opportunity to wear the Burgundy and Gold as a player," Redskins VP of Personnel Doug Williams said in a November statement.

Allen said that the team conducted its own investigation then and expected Foster to be cleared. Now, Allen expects Foster to stay out of trouble. 

"We hold our players to a very high standard at the Redskins," the team president said. "We ask for a commitment that goes beyond the 60 minutes of a football game. Reuben understands what he has to do, and he's been doing it every day."

As a rookie in 2017, Foster played in 10 games and registered 72 tackles.

In 2018, Foster started the season on a suspension for a drug violation before playing six games. He logged 29 tackles but his year was cut short for injuries before landing on the commissioner's exempt list once the arrest in Florida happened. 

A first-round pick out of Alabama in 2017, Foster will be lined up with a number of his former college teammates on the Redskins. 

Assuming he gets through the offseason without any trouble, when Foster hits the field for Washington, he could be a major asset