Here is what you need to know on Friday, September 21, two days before the Washington Redskins host the Green Bay Packers
Here are a few things heard around Redskins Park this week along with my comments.
Alex Smith on if the offense would feel any additional pressure because they are facing Aaron Rodgers: "I think that you can get sucked into that. In the end, of course, we want to dominate regardless the offense we’re playing, of course, we want to go out there and execute, move the chains . . . It just comes through execution, though . . . The way to do that is just play good offense."
Comment: The Redskins probably will need to score at least 30 points to win this game. Since 2016, the Packers have lost one game that Rodgers started and finish where the opponent scored fewer than 30 points. But Jay Gruden can’t come up with a special “we have to score 35 points” game plan. What he can do, however, is remember what happened to the Bears in Week 1 and remain aggressive if they do build a lead.
D.J. Swearinger on defending the back-shoulder pass against Rodgers: "You’ve got to defend the receiver. The receiver will tell you if he’s going back shoulder or if he’s going [deep] based on body language."
Comment: This is a great detail here. Defensive back can get so scared to get beaten deep that they just keep running while the receiver slows down to catch an intentionally underthrown Rodgers pass. The key is watching the receiver’s eyes as that will give away where the ball is going. It’s easier said than done but the discipline to do so is critical when playing against a QB like Rodgers.
Trent Williams on the shuffling that the offensive line likely will have to do with LG Shawn Lauvao out: "It’s a challenge any time you have anybody who has to move positions or any guy who’s new to the lineup. It’s definitely a learning curve to get caught up to speed on how we like to do things. With Tony being a veteran and knowing the offense inside and out, Chase kicking over to guard, those are two of the smarter guys in the offensive line room."
Comment: He doesn’t appear to be too worried that Tony Bergstrom will move in at center and starting center Chase Roullier will slide over to left guard. I don’t think that there should be too much concern about Bergstrom knowing what he needs to do. But his performance in the preseason was spotty at best. We will see how the revamped interior line performs against the Packers’ quality group on the interior defensive line.
Injuries of note
Out: S Troy Apke (hamstring), G Shawn Lauvao (calf)
Limited: WR Paul Richardson (shoulder), LB Zach Brown (oblique), G Brandon Scherff (knee), OT Trent Williams (knee)
Changes from Wednesday: Richardson and Brown from out to limited
Today: Practice 12:15 p.m.; Jay Gruden news conference and open locker room after practice approx. 2 p.m.
Upcoming: Packers @ Redskins (Sept. 23) 2; Redskins @ Saints (October 8) 17; Cowboys @ Redskins 30
In case you missed it
Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler is locked into the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page, Facebook.com/TandlerNBCS and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS and on Instagram @RichTandler.