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Redskins HC Jay Gruden's 'greatest fear as a coach' may surprise you

Redskins HC Jay Gruden's 'greatest fear as a coach' may surprise you

Being an NFL head coach brings a lot of pressure. Fans, ownership, media, players; the heat comes from everywhere. Redskins head coach Jay Gruden maintains a pretty cool temperment most of the time, which is remarkable considering the accelerated pressure that accompanies the D.C. environment.

Like any professional, Gruden has job-related fears. After the 2017 Draft, the Washington head coach spoke on ESPN980 about his greatest fear as a coach, and it may surprise some people. 

"I need centers. That's my biggest fear as a coach," Gruden said.

Not quarterback. Not cornerback. Not left tackle. Not edge rusher. 

Center.

Well, it makes sense. The most basic function of football is snapping the ball to the quarterback. Without a snap, the offense simply won't work. Not work poorly, will not work.

In the last few seasons, Gruden has gotten close to seeing his offensive line without a center. Current starter Spencer Long is converted from guard, as was his predecessor Kory Lichtensteiger. Depth was a problem last season too. Lichtensteiger got hurt and the 'Skins were forced to sign John Sullivan off the street.

Washington's sixth round selection of Wyoming center Chase Roullier then makes a lot of sense. 

"I really don't anticipate Spencer losing the starting center job right now to a rookie," Gruden said. "It's very important for us to add depth at that position."

Roullier gives exactly that, not to mention the versatility to fill in elsewhere on the line.

"Chase has played center. And if you're going to dress on game day as a sixth lineman, backup center, you got to play both guards. And he's played guards in college also."

Looking at all of Washington's picks from the third day of the draft, positional value seems to make Roullier the biggest lock to make the roster. On the Redskins, Long is the only lineman with center experience. The guards on the roster - Shawn Lauvao, Brandon Scherff and Arie Kouandjio - have zero experience in the middle of the line. 

"Something happens to Spencer, where do you go? Teach a guard to do it again?" Gruden asked. "You got to have a guy that can play center in my opinion."

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Here's why there's a prop bet that Kyle Shanahan's 49ers will blow a significant lead

Here's why there's a prop bet that Kyle Shanahan's 49ers will blow a significant lead

The Super Bowl always brings obscure prop bets that raise eyebrows. Outside of the annual wagers on the color of Gatorade poured on the coach or the duration of the national anthem, each Super Bowl brings unique bets fans can make.

This year, one prop bet revolves around San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan and what happened the last time he was on the sidelines for a Super Bowl. That was, of course, the infamous 2017 Super Bowl, when Shanahan was the offensive coordinator of the Atlanta Falcons.

His team had a commanding 28-3 lead with 8:31 to play in the third quarter. But as the Patriots went on their run to cut the deficit, the Falcons couldn’t muster a score of their own to put the game away. Further, Shanahan’s play-calling faced scrutiny for his fourth-quarter decisions not to run the ball to expend the clock.

As Shanahan gets set for a chance at Super Bowl redemption, the sportsbook PointsBet is offering 100-1 odds that his team will blow another 28-3 lead in this year’s Super Bowl.

Some may be hesitant to take those odds, chalking up the 2017 Super Bowl as a one-off. But a deeper dive into his time with the Redskins from 2010-2013 shows that Shanahan’s offenses were susceptible to reeling off dynamic starts before lowly second halves.

In just his second game manning the Redskins offense, Washington took a 27-10 lead over the Houston Texans with under four minutes to go in the third quarter. The Texans then scored 20 unanswered points to win 30-27 in overtime.

Two years later, also in Week 2, Shanahan and company raced out to a 21-6 lead midway through the second quarter and looked prime to improve to 2-0 with then-rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III. But the offensive productivity fizzled out, and the Rams came back to win 31-28.

Shanahan’s most significant blown lead in Washington came in the Wild Card playoff game against the Seattle Seahawks. In the Redskins’ first playoff home game since 1999, the team staked a 14-0 lead in the first quarter but failed to score again thereafter en route to a 24-14 loss.

During the 2013 season, his last in Washington, Shanahan saw his offense falter after building two-score leads in three games.

Against the eventual Super Bowl runner-up Broncos, the Redskins held a 21-7 lead in the third quarter before Denver rallied to win decisively, 45-21. Two weeks later, the offense led the team to a 24-14 first half against the Vikings, but managed just one field goal in the second half in a 34-27 loss. And in a Week 13 home game against the Giants, Washington led 14-0 early in the second quarter, but eventually lost 24-17.

None of Shanahan’s blown leads in Washington were as high as 25 points, nor were they on one of the biggest stages in sports. But when you’re considering the 28-3 prop bet this year, just know that there are other results beyond the 2017 Super Bowl to base your decision on.

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Jerry Jones and his $250 million yacht are ready for Super Bowl LIV in Miami

Jerry Jones and his $250 million yacht are ready for Super Bowl LIV in Miami

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones was seen on his $250 million yacht in Miami ahead of Super Bowl LIV. 

Jones' boat, the Bravo Eugenia, is 357-feet-long, three short of a regulation football field.

He will be reportedly hosting the "biggest and baddest of all of the Super Bowl Week parties."

The Cowboys had Super Bowl aspirations ahead of the 2019 season but could not live up to the hype.

The Cowboys finished the season at 8-8 and have a lot of questions ahead of them during the upcoming off-season.

Regardless of whether his squad would be competing in Miami for the Lombardi Trophy, Jones would be at Super Bowl LIV, and after bringing in Mike McCarthy as the team's new head coach, Jones has taken his talents to South Beach for the big game.

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