"Very impressive.""Explosive.""Elusive."Robert Griffin III continues to garner an immense amount of praise around the league, despite the Redskins eventually falling to the Bengals in their home opener, 38-31.However, one may not expect this kind of acclaim from the opposing team.And while the Bengals D is crushing on the Redskins QB in a respect sense, it didn't stop them from crushing the QB on the field, sacking the rookie 6 times.Defensive end, Carlos Dunlap, said when they saw an opportunity to do so the Bengals seized it, "When he's outside the pocket, it's our chance, you gotta be careful because he Griffin can dodge some hits too. So when you get him, you want to get him good."Dunlap, clearly blow away by Griffin's ability went as far as to say, he was proud of the burgundy's and gold's signal caller,"The sky is the limit for him, man. Mad props to him for taking all those hits and getting back up and bringing him team back. We just happened to finish and get the win today. He brings a different dynamic to the game, man, I'm proud of him."But it was the RG3's toughness that impressed Dunlap the most."Getting up after getting hit, you know, I mean everyone keeps trying to say he can't take a hit and today he took a few of them and got right back up and willed his team back into the game so he's just gotta just keep doing that."Teammate, Michael Johnson, in what is being dubbed as the ('best performance of his young career') thus far delivered three of the sacks, was also left awestruck by Griffin's tenacious play,"He's a tough competitor, because we hit him a bunch of times and he kept getting up...like...that was very impressive. He's going to be a very good player in this league. He's explosive, he's elusive. I can't say enough about him, the way he kept getting back up. I know we hit him a bunch of times, but he would not quit. I tip my hat to him for that."As for Griffin? For him, One hit is more than enough, but he realizes actions speak louder than words, "It's not a show. In college we say it all the time, 'tough guys have to be tough guys.' You can't just talk tough, but then play soft. By no means do I have to be the toughest guy on the field. That's what you have the offensive linemen for. They are supposed to be the guys that are the toughest on the field. But whenever those guys do get to you and those are two big guys that deliver good hits, all you can do is get up from it. The one thing they did late in the game was (Michael) Johnson hit me and got a quarterback hit and he picked me up and told me to get up. I think you earn players' respect. You don't say anything and just get up from those hits."And speaking of hits, both Johnson and Dunlap, repeatedly noted that RG3 would not quit, but at what point does Griffin fail to get up? One has to wonder about his durability over the course of an entire season in the NFL.
In the weeks since the 2018 season ended, the Redskins have had various levels of contact with Todd Bowles, Steve Wilks and Gregg Williams.
All three men have extensive experience as defensive coordinators and all three men got new jobs already this offseason in that position.
Now, after Bowles, Wilks and Williams picked up those new jobs, The Washington Post reported that the Redskins will keep Greg Manusky as defensive coorinator. He's already under contract.
The meetings with all the other guys? A source told the Post that the Redskins wanted to get "different perspectives" on improving the defense for 2019.
Different perspectives. From the three hottest coordinator names on the coaching market. Sure.
That said, Manusky is not the sole reason the Redskins fell apart in the second half of the 2018 season. In fact, he's probably not in the Top 5 reasons.
The Washington defense improved in Manusky's second season as defensive coordinator and looked like a fierce unit in the first half of the year. The team made tremendous strides in rush defense and proved to be quite good at forcing turnovers.
Late in the season, verbal spats with safety DJ Swearinger might have undermined Manusky's status with the defense. But the team decided to release Swearinger, cementing the coach's authority. It also helped that emerging leader Jonathan Allen came out and vocally supported Manusky and his defensive schemes.
At this point, the Redskins have no choice but to say the team was keeping Manusky all along.
If the organization was interested in other candidates at defensive coordinator, and it sure seemed like they were, those guys found other jobs. The marketplace isn't packed with other candidates with brighter resumes to replace Manusky, so the team is smart to bring back the incumbent.
The process was awkward, regardless of what gets said now. Manusky is a professional, and has been coaching in the NFL for more than a decade. He understands how business gets done.
Now, Manusky will be back, and there is good young talent on the Redskins defense, especially up front.
The guess here is Manusky will say he always expected to be back and never stopped working on getting better for 2019. Now he gets the chance to show it.
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Chris Thompson is an accomplished player in the NFL. Despite being a fifth round pick, Thompson has made it to a second contract, something more than half of the league never does.
In six seasons with the Redskins, Thompson has nearly 2,500 yards from scrimmage and 15 touchdowns. At times, he's been among the best third down backs in the NFL.
This is a long way of establishing that Chris Thompson is an accomplised football player. Redskins fans know that.
Adrian Peterson didn't.
Funny story. When AP was on his visit here I introduced myself to him and assumed he knew who I was based off how well I had played the previous season. As we were talking he said, “you play cornerback?” My heart dropped. 😂😂😂— Chris Thompson (@ChrisThompson_4) January 16, 2019
Not many people would share that story, so good for Thompson for doing it. Let's add that Peterson joined the Redskins after offseason workouts and training camp, the normal time for new players to get to know each other. Peterson signed up with the Redskins in the middle of August, well after the regular get-to-know-you period had closed.
Still, that's a tough break for Thompson.
Peterson is a legend in the NFL, one of the best running backs to ever play the game. When he joined the Redskins, a number of players watched him work in practice with the hint of awe in their eyes. He proved to be a great teammate and a strong presence in the locker room.
By the end of the year, Peterson was obviously a leader for the Redskins. Players looked up to him, even if he didn't know their name when the year started.
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