Redskins

Te'o: Getting past award season was 'easy'

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Te'o: Getting past award season was 'easy'

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) Notre Dame star linebacker Manti Te'o found it ``easy'' to get past college football's award season and get focused on the BCS championship against Alabama.

No. 1 Notre Dame will play the second-ranked Crimson Tide on Monday night for the national title. On Thursday morning, Alabama's stars on offense and Notre Dame's defensive leaders spoke to reporters.

Te'o was the Heisman Trophy runner-up and won a bevy of other awards in mid-December, requiring him to travel around the country to various dinners and ceremonies. But Te'o said once he got back to his teammates, he was in his comfort zone.

In other words, football became about football again.

``When you're in the middle of football, nothing else matters,'' Te'o said.

Notre Dame defensive coordinator Bob Diaco says that Te'o has worked harder in the last week of practice than he has all season.

``He, himself, has raised his game,'' Diaco said.

The Irish were headed to the practice field in South Florida for the first time Thursday afternoon, and coach Brian Kelly said he expected it to be a somewhat physical workout - which would indicate that it would be the last real tough session before the title game. Teams typically begin to taper their practices in the days before a game, particularly one of this magnitude.

Many players said being in South Florida made the championship game finally seem real.

``It has been a very anxious feeling, I would say,'' Notre Dame linebacker Danny Spond said. ``Ever since the USC game and to finally be announced that we would be in this game, it has been an exciting time.''

One of the concerns for the Irish in the final few days will be hydration. Temperatures were reaching the low 80s in South Florida on Thursday, about 55 degrees or so warmer than on Notre Dame's campus in South Bend, Ind.

The Irish have been practicing inside at home, which Kelly said would help the acclimation process to the heat and humidity of the Miami area.

``It's definitely important to adjust,'' Notre Dame defensive end Kapron Lewis-Moore said.

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Redskins sign linebacker Jon Bostic to try and help make up for the loss of Reuben Foster

Redskins sign linebacker Jon Bostic to try and help make up for the loss of Reuben Foster

Two days after losing Reuben Foster for the year, the Redskins made a move to at least provide reinforcements to a weakened linebacker group.

On Wednesday, Washington announced that they have signed Jon Bostic, a six-year veteran. The 'Skins also officially placed Foster on injured reserve.

Bostic was a 2013 second-round pick of the Bears out of Florida. He's since bounced around to New England, Detroit, Indianapolis, and Pittsburgh, where he started 14 times for the Steelers in 2018 and posted 73 tackles. He's been traded twice in his career and missed all of 2016 with a foot injury. 

So, what does the move accomplish for the Redskins?

Well, Bostic — or any other free agent signing at this point — isn't going to have close to the level of talent and potential that Foster had. However, getting another option at linebacker was necessary for the Burgundy and Gold, and the 28-year-old has played in 30 contests over the past two years, so he's relatively established. 

Yes, he's far from a gamechanger, considering he has just one interception and 5.5 sacks as a pro. But he's regarded as a solid run defender and tackler and should at least push Mason Foster and Shaun Dion Hamilton. His presence also could alleviate some of the pressure that would've been on rookie Cole Holcomb. 

Signing a defender who's been with five franchises in six years isn't exactly inspiring, but Bostic has experience as a starter and could give the Redskins useful snaps on first and second down at a minimum. Now it's on him to take advantage of the opportunity he's been given.

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Landon Collins is thrilled to be with the Redskins and can't wait to get revenge on the Giants

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Landon Collins is thrilled to be with the Redskins and can't wait to get revenge on the Giants

You may not know the exact dates of the Redskins' two matchups with the Giants this season, which will take place Sep. 29 and Dec. 22 in 2019. But Landon Collins sure does.

"I'm gonna circle it for the next six years," the 'Skins new safety told ESPN in a recent interview. 

No, Collins isn't circling those dates from now until 2024 because he wants to be very organized and ensure he doesn't have any scheduling conflicts. He's doing it because he's dying to get revenge on his former team, who let him leave as a free agent in part because of their "culture change," according to him.

"All we wanted to do was win, and we spoke up because we had to get them to listen to us," Collins told ESPN, referring to himself and other now ex-Giants like Odell Beckham and Damon Harrison. "I think we were too vocal, and that platform was bigger than the Giants... If it's not good media, they don't want that kind of media."

In addition to the organization wanting to go in a different direction culture-wise, New York didn't want to pay the amount of money the Redskins ended up paying for Collins because he wasn't an ideal fit in their defense. The 25-year-old pushes back against the idea that he's strictly a "box safety," though, as do current and former players.

Interestingly enough, Collins isn't the only member of the Redskins' secondary who's in D.C. thanks to a decision by Dave Gettleman. Gettleman was also the same guy who decided the Panthers needed to move on from Josh Norman in April 2016.

Collins, for one, doesn't sound like he'll miss Gettleman at all. The defender didn't love how the GM consistently failed to make an effort to connect personally with his players. 

"I don't know him, he don't know me, that's kind of how it just kind of was," he explained.

All that, however, doesn't matter anymore. Collins is going to be the foundation of the Redskins' defense for quite some time, and that's a challenge he's ready to accept.

"I'm on a team that loves me and wanted me here," he said.

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