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T. Williams, D. Jackson among 4 Skins starters missing at OTAs

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T. Williams, D. Jackson among 4 Skins starters missing at OTAs

There were a handful of notable absences as OTAs began at Redskins Park on Tuesday.

Only one of them, however, has the potential to be problematic.

Oft-injured tight end Jordan Reed missed the practice because of knee soreness, Coach Jay Gruden said.

“He just had a little bit of knee soreness, so we sent him down to get checked,” said Gruden, who later downplayed the significance of it.

The severity of the injury was unclear. But given the 24-year-old’s history it certainly bears watching.

Reed has missed 12 games in his two-year NFL career due to a variety of injuries, including a bruised knee, pulled left and right hamstrings, a hip pointer and a significant concussion, among other issues.

Reed, though, wasn’t the only notable absence.

Linebacker Ryan Kerrigan, who had arthroscopic knee surgery last week, was sidelined as he begins to rehab. Gruden said he doesn’t think he’ll be out long.

“Ryan is going to be fine,” Gruden said. “He just got a scope to clean it out. He’s going to be ready to roll soon.”

Star wide receiver DeSean Jackson was not present, either. Gruden did not give a reason for Jackson's absence, but said he’ll join the team next week.

Three-time Pro Bowl left tackle Trent Williams and reserve cornerback Tracy Porter, meantime, were not present because flight issues, according to Gruden.

“Lots of flight issues last night,” Gruden cracked.

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Does Odell Beckham Jr. truly believe the Giants will rattle off 8 straight wins to make playoffs?

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USA Today Sports

Does Odell Beckham Jr. truly believe the Giants will rattle off 8 straight wins to make playoffs?

Prior to the Giants' Monday Night Football victory in San Francisco, Odell Beckham Jr. made a statement. He and the Giants backed it up...for now. 

That statement revolved around winning out which would mean the now 2-7 New York football Giants would have to rattle off wins against the Buccaneers, Eagles, Bears, Redskins, Titans, Colts and Cowboys to reach an overall record of 9-7. The 26-year-old is assuming that 9-7 would win New York the division, which certainly is a stretch being that the Redskins currently sit 6-3 atop the division comfortably.

Right on cue, and to no one's surprise, Beckham Jr. went right back to reminding everyone about his statement following Big Blue's wire-to-wire victory over the 49ers. 

Circle your calendars. Odell and the Giants come to FedExField Sunday, Dec. 9 for a 1 p.m. NFC East showdown. 

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Redskins fans and players can both be right about FedEx Field frustrations

Redskins fans and players can both be right about FedEx Field frustrations

The Redskins moved to 6-3 on Sunday by beating the Buccaneers in Tampa, and now sit two games clear in first place in the NFC East. 

That should be the biggest football story inside the Beltway. But it isn't. 

The story has become that two of the most high-profile members of the Washington defense said that they prefer playing road games to being in their home stadium. Why? Because on the road they can hear better and focus more since they don't have fans booing them. 

Seriously. 

"Home games, that’s some of the worst things I’ve seen. I’ve played on four different teams, never seen it that bad, with other team’s jerseys in the stands, the boos, whatever it may be," Redskins safety D.J. Swearinger said during an appearance on 106.7 the Fan's Grant and Danny program on Monday. 

"I’ve never been a part of nothing like that."

This freight train started moving on Sunday, when after the win in Tampa, Josh Norman said he likes playing on the road. Why? Because there aren't any boos.

"We go into the homestands, and it’s like an open bubble,” Norman said. “Like the other team’s turf or something. You hear more of them than you do us. Then if something bad happens, they suck. They sit back in their seat, and they boo."

There's a lot to unpack here. 

Norman and Swearinger are right. There are always a lot of visiting fans at FedEx Field. Some of that might be that Washington is a transient city, but some of it is also because other fans have determined that it's easy to get tickets at FedEx Field. 

Why is it easy for visiting fans to get tickets? Well, there's not much sizzle at FedEx Field.

The area doesn't have shopping or restaurants around it like many newer NFL stadiums. The traffic, like much of life in the D.C. area, is awful. The stadium itself is underwhelming; old and lacking character. 

The Redskins are working hard to overhaul the game day experience, and some of the efforts are alrady working. But the problem is some fans have soured on the idea of spending the day at FedEx Field, and that will take time to fix. Probably years. 

One obvious fix? A new stadium, preferably back in downtown D.C. That is a long way off though. 

Plenty of fans are bothered by Swearinger and Norman's comments, and they have reason for that, too. 

To start with, there are tens of thousands of fans at every home game, cheering on their club. Lifelong, loyal fans that pay good money to watch the Burgundy and Gold. 

Do some boo? Certainly. But they only boo when the team is bad. Play good, no boos. It's fairly simple.

And the boos aren't only about a specific game, or even a specific season. Many Redskins fans are just frustrated with the franchise in general for a litany of reasons. Things have been stable under Jay Gruden, but for a long time, they weren't. 

What isn't fair for Norman and Swearinger is they played zero part in the multi-decade erosion of the Redskins fan base. And some would argue the fan base hasn't actually eroded, just that fewer fans want to make the trek to the stadium and commit to the full day that is attending an NFL game.

For 20 years, Washington has played plenty of bad football at home. During that time, some fans simply decided they'd rather watch on television, or go for a walk, or do yard work, or hang with their family. 

The toughest part is that both Norman and Swearinger can be right, but the fans that are upset with the comments can be right as well. 

Are there good fans? Absolutely. Are there lots of visiting fans? Yep. 

It won't be fixed overnight. Winning is the best cure, however, as old fans will return and new fans will be created. 

Play well and there won't be any booing. Keep winning games and there won't be anything but burgundy in the stands. 

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