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Redskins Playbook: Jay Gruden's 'most consistent' wide receiver might surprise fans

Redskins Playbook: Jay Gruden's 'most consistent' wide receiver might surprise fans

The stats don't show it. Fans might not love it. Jay Gruden and the Redskins coaching staff, however, know the value wide receiver Ryan Grant brings to the team. 

"Hopefully he’ll get more opportunities. He’s our most consistent guy, without a doubt, as a far as being able to lineup everywhere, run the routes exactly how we want them at the right depth coming out of them," Gruden said during minicamp.

Redskins fans can read this a few different ways. Straightforward, Grant works hard and does what the coaches want. Watch enough practices and it's obvious; Grant runs each drill exactly as it's taught, rarely turning a corner early or starting a cut before the proper step. 

Beyond Grant's work ethic and understanding of the route concepts though, Grant can be an example for new wideout Terrelle Pryor and second-year man Josh Doctson. Those two players, along with Jamison Crowder, will likely get the starter's portion of snaps this fall.

Pryor posted 1,000 yards last year in Cleveland, but is still learning the receiver position. Doctson barely played in 2016. Both guys can learn from Grant, who is also an excellent downfield blocker.

And Gruden defnitely thinks Grant could produce in the Redskins offense. 

"That’s the big thing is opportunities. He needs opportunities. You can’t produce very well at wideout if you don’t get opportunities," Gruden said. "Wide receivers moan about that all the time, ‘Throw me the ball.’ And poor Ryan doesn’t moan about it, probably internally he does."

Grant's best season came in 2015 when he had nearly 270 yards receiving on 23 catches. Last year, those numbers slipped big time; he had just nine catches for 76 yards. 

To produce this fall, Grant will need opportunities. None of that will change his consistency on the practice field, and that's why the coaches like him so much.

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NFL players react to news that Andrew Luck is retiring

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USA TODAY Sports Images

NFL players react to news that Andrew Luck is retiring

NFL players took to Twitter on Saturday to send well-wishes to Andrew Luck after news broke that he is retiring from the NFL. 

ESPN's Adam Schefter reported that Luck was 'mentally worn out' after years of battling injuries. Luck confirmed the news in an emotional press conference on Saturday night.

"Andrew luck I understand you 100% brotha," wrote Dez Bryant. "... take your time ... I wish you the best."

Redskins rookie quarterback Dwayne Haskins reacted to the news with emojis.

Former player turned ESPN analyst Emmanuel Acho posted video of Colts fans booing Luck as he walked into the locker room. "Coach always said, 'the pats on the back eventually turn into stabs,'" he wrote.  

"That's bad to boo that man," added former Redskins player Chris Baker.

Former Ravens and current Carolina player Torrey Smith tweeted that anyone in the sport understands.

Jaguars long snapper Matt Overton wrote he was "shook."

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Falcons safety Keanu Neal says no 'ill intent' for big hit on Jordan Reed

Falcons safety Keanu Neal says no 'ill intent' for big hit on Jordan Reed

Jordan Reed took a major blow to the head in the Redskins third preseason game in Atlanta, and the blow eventually landed Washington's stud tight end in the NFL's concussion protocol. 

Falcons safety Keanu Neal delivered the hit, and while it was clearly illegal and resulted in a penalty on the field, he took to Twitter to defend his play. 

It's hard to judge intent under the incredible speed that plays happen during pro football. When a player goes in for a tackle, ball carriers can also move, and plays that look dirty in slow motion can look reasonable in full speed. Still, it's undeniable that Reed took a major shot in the helmet from Neal, and it definitely seemed unnecessary. And it's not a secret that Reed has dealt with serious head injuries throughout his NFL career. 

There has been no update on Reed's condition beyond that he's in the NFL concussion protocol. Reed also stayed in the game after the big hit from Neal before his concussion symptoms showed up at halftime. 

Neal is a fifth-year safety out of the University of Florida. He missed most of the 2018 season with an ACL injury. Reed also attended the University of Florida.

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