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In the end, the game comes down to one thing: man against man. May the best man win.

~ Sam Huff                    


 


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Griffin III on Shea: "A real mentor and QB coach that I could trust in."
by Chris Russell
Apr 17, 2014 -- 1:33pm


Last off-season was a mess for Robert Griffin III and the Redskins. Everything went wrong. It was a broken road.

That road came with a lot of pain. For Griffin III, it was physical pain. For Redskins fans, it was a different type of agony. Either way - the Redskins and Griffin have no choice but to move on.
 
2014 started off with a bang, with the change in a good deal of the coaching staff and the hiring of Jay Gruden.

The offensive line was improved, DeSean Jackson was obtained and the defense was upgraded. Now it's time to put some of the new toys on the field for football related workouts that begin this Monday.

No matter which way you slice it, the Redskins will likely only be as good as Robert Griffin III allows them to be. Nobody knows for sure, but if the work and early results are any indication - Griffin should be much closer to the 2012 version than what we saw last year.

As we detailed last week, Griffin has not been on vacation or putting his marketing agenda over football and anybody that believes that should take a step back and hit themselves over the head with a two-by-four.

Griffin has been doing everything he can, including working with ESPN 980's Chris Cooley and organizing a week long series of workouts with several teammates like Pierre Garcon, Santana Moss, Jordan Reed, Alfred Morris and more in Phoenix, Arizona.

It wasn't just a bunch of guys running around in shorts and doing something to kill time. It was six days of hard workouts with individual sessions and group sessions.

Griffin hopes that he will be making several trips to Phoenix this year. The Redskins play the Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium in the regular season, but there's this thing called the Super Bowl.

"It was paramount for our season...There's a lot of great things that are going to be happening in Arizona this year, and we want to be part of that," Griffin said earlier this week on ESPN Radio 1660 AM & 99.1 FM with David Smoak.


Griffin went so far as to "hire" a coach to help run and organize the week. It was somebody he had a strong familiarity with and a coach that assisted him in becoming the player that took the NFL by storm in 2012.

Terry Shea is a former offensive coordinator and quarterback coach for several teams in the NFL. Over the last few years, he wrote a book  "Eyes Up" and personally tutored and prepared quarterbacks for the NFL draft. This year, he is working with Georgia's Aaron Murray. In the past, it was Robert Griffin III, Matthew Stafford, Sam Bradford and many others.

Griffin knew he needed help, in more ways than one. He needed help running the week. Griffin told ESPN 980 via text on Tuesday night, "Coach Shea controlled all on field drills, because that is his expertise.  I was responsible for setting everything (else) up. Workouts, buses, scheduling and having everyone ready to work."

Just as important,  he needed help with his mechanics. His footwork, weight transfer, release point. The little things. You know - the things the critics said he was not as interested in as his logo design.

While Griffin was so allegedly consumed by his marketing empire, he somehow found the time to recruit DeSean Jackson and he reached out to perhaps the last quarterback coach he truly trusted and they made magic.

"We worked for six days together," Shea told ESPN 980's Kevin Sheehan and Thom Loverro. "He did not show any kind of a trace of favoring his knee or anything along those lines, he just went after it. He looked healthy."

Perhaps just as important for Griffin's success and, as a result, the success of the Redskins is his mechanics and his frame of mind. "He got back to the fundamentals of playing the position," Shea said "He's really in a good state I believe."

Griffin has not been able to talk football lingo officially with Jay Gruden, Sean McVay and other members of the Redskins coaching staff until just last week. So with no CBA restrictions on him - he rolled the dice and figured a sharp set of eyes that helped him in 2012 could help fix some of the issues.

One of the small things they worked on? Griffin's drops from under center. Shea explained some of the techniques he wanted him to work on. "Things like "Hey Robert, take three big steps and four quick on your seven step drop." That may seem like a small thing, but it isn't. Timing is everything in the NFL. Every step, every tenth of a second. Being on the same page and in line with each other is the lifeblood of success.

All of that sounds great, but clearly many things went wrong last year. It wasn't all on the knee brace or a fractured relationship with Mike Shanahan and by extension, Kyle. "The games I did see," Shea recalled, "he seemed to be missing by sailing the ball. The ball was coming off and going a little high on him. A true reflection of not being able to transfer your weight from the back foot to the front foot."

Shea added "We really attacked that. His release point was up and I think that started to drop some."

Coaching, practice, repetition and execution are the essential ingredients to continuously improve. "He's so good at being able to listen to a coaching point and then translating it right on to the field without any additional repetition," Shea told the "Sports Fix.

So the fundamentals are expected to be better, and the communication between Griffin and Jay Gruden should absolutely be better. Then there's his relationships with Pierre Garcon and DeSean Jackson specifically.

At times last year, Garcon visibly showed his frustration with the lack of crispness in the passing game, despite setting a Redskins single-season record for receptions. Based on many sources, Garcon has absolutely no issue with Griffin. He's just wired so tight and wanted to win so bad that the frustrations came to the surface.

Jackson and Griffin bonded in Southern California before he signed with the Redskins, but playing football at an elite level against tough, physical defenses is completely different than dinner and laughs.

While Griffin did not have Jackson in Arizona with Shea, he did have Garcon and the others. Shea said one of the things that impressed him the most is that he "makes sure every one of his receivers do things right and don't leave the  field...He won't let those guys leave the field on a miss."

Griffin clearly wanted Jackson to add to the mix. He'd be crazy not to want him. They are a perfect match for each other's skill set. Griffin told Smoak on ESPN-Central Texas, AM1660/99.1FM;  "D-Jack definetly adds some talent and some spark to the receiving corps, to our offensive weapons."

As for any issues that might arise because of ball distribution? "All those guys will get their chance to make plays," Griffin said in a surprise phone call while Shea was on the air in Waco. "There's not enough balls to go around to all of those guys at the same time, but it will make it to where everybody when they get a chance to make a play, they'll make it."

That's for Jay Gruden and Sean McVay to figure out. Shea knows that Griffin will get the best out of every man.

The respect goes both ways. Griffin payed homage to Shea's impact on his career, and his maturity as a quarterback and a man in the interview. When contacted by ESPN 980, he made it clear once again the type of lasting effect Shea has had.

"I knew Terry was the right guy after the first day of working with him. Energetic, constructive criticism and a good spirited man," Griffin recalled via text on Tuesday night.

"After my pro day (2012), when it was time to part ways, Terry was very emotional because he thought he would never have another chance to work with or see me again. He told me 'Robert...it was fun, young man (with a cracky voice),' as Griffin recalled Shea's words to him. 'I never had the opportunity to work with a guy as gifted and special as you kid.'

Griffin continued, "So, as I walked away, I too, became emotional. Not because I was sad or afraid. But because I knew I had a real mentor and QB coach that I could trust in."

The appreciation and bond between the two is hard not to notice. As they were parting ways on the phone, Shea said "I love you, Robert." To which Griffin said, "love you too, coach."

Griffin reminded Shea this time wasn't the last time they would work together or enjoy each other's company.  He had no reason to fear as he did in 2012. Griffin said "We'll be working again this summer. Don't worry."

Chris Russell - SFTheRooster@Yahoo.com - www.twitter.com/russellmania980


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Criticism of Griffin III is Asinine
by Chris Russell
Apr 10, 2014 -- 8:00am

I've tried to stay out of this as much as possible, but I can't completely walk away. I just can't. Everywhere you turn - Robert Griffin III and his logo debut is in the news.

It is what it is. Some people like it and will support Griffin III and his marketing ventures, the way fans support any product endorsed by any athlete. You have the right to do what you want.

Griffin is always in the spotlight, so anything he does will be either ripped or defended.

Here's the bottom-line because I said so (a tribute to Stone Cold Steve Austin) - A logo, shield or marketing design for a highly visible athlete is nothing that you should be worried about. At all. Period. End of story.

You can say it's selfish. You can say it's for financial gain. You can say it makes him as I've heard some refer to him as "R-G Me" and all of that. Again, that's your right.

However - I would counter by saying that nobody has ever had a problem with Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, or by god the great American hero Peyton Manning endorsing anything or creating a business empire for themselves while playing. You didn't have a problem in 2012 when Griffin was on top of the football world and making your jaw drop. All of a sudden you don't like it? That's asinine.

How about every single NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver who spends time early in the week meeting and schmoozing with sponsors and then each and every race weekend spends time at corporate hospitality events or meeting with sponsors and marketing executives trying to develop their individual brand and certainly their team brand. Remember NASCAR's most popular driver and Redskins fan, Dale Earnhardt Jr? He went a long time, even with great equipment without winning a single race. Nobody questioned how hard he worked.

Why should you have a problem then with Griffin III? Why? Because he's coming off of a (3-13) season? Because he and the former head coach didn't get along? Because you are worried about him becoming selfish and out of control ego wise?

Let's start with this. Griffin III's marketing contracts were signed several years ago. Yes, he has some input but he has to honor those contracts. He doesn't totally get to pick and choose what he is going to do or not do. He's an easy target. He probably brings some of the criticism on himself. I know this, because I do the same thing.

God forbid, in this town of ridiculously thin-skinned paranoid fans and teams (the Redskins included) you have a different view and go against the grain a bit. Robert didn't go against the fans, but many fans and some media took it as an insult that he would unveil a logo or announce it in the manner he did.

They said - Griffin III should worry more about football than his personal empire. To which I say this. Griffin took care and then some of every football obligation he was legally allowed to do (and then some) before unveiling the logo.

Let's go back in time a bit. Griffin III has been at Redskins Park on a very regular basis from mid - January until late March. During that time, he's not allowed to talk football and strategy with any of the coaching staff or throw the football on the facility grounds. He's basically allowed to work out and that's it.

As we detailed a few weeks ago, Griffin III called upon one member of the Redskins family, ESPN 980's Chris Cooley to start cranking up his football workout regimin. He could have been on vacation. He wasn't.

Griffin III then organized and planned a "Redskins West" passing camp between many of the team's skill players in Phoenix. Santana Moss, who was one of the players at that series of workouts saluted Griffin on ESPN 980 Wednesday for setting it up and organizing the whole event, saying in part "Robert really set it up good."

He could have been on vacation. He wasn't.

You've heard and perhaps seen the twitter hashtag "The Movement"  in Griffin's tweets and some other players, like DeAngelo Hall. It was at the end of the Arizona "movement" that Griffin III headed to Southern California, where as it turns out he met with DeSean Jackson and convinced him of the reasons he should come to the Washington Redskins.

Presumably, Jackson said the right things to Griffin and the quarterback gave his approval. Griffin is convinced that Jackson will be a huge addition and will not be a negative force. That still has to be proven but I believe Griffin and DeAngelo Hall's opinion to be trustworthy.

It was at that point after meeting with Jackson, from what I've heard, that Griffin met with his team at Adidas for various meetings which led to the culmination of the new logo. Griffin took his last few days before voluntary workouts to wrap up some personal business and proceded back home to Virginia to prepare for and attend the opening days of the team's first workouts under Jay Gruden.

Speaking of Jackson, he has been on a pre-arranged vacation that he has been posting various pictures about on twitter and instagram. Most fans do not seem to care one bit that he is not present because the team reportedly cleared him and again, the workouts are voluntary.

I do have to wonder - how many fans and media critics have absolutely no problem with Desean Jackson missing these crucial bond building moments, but rail against Griffin for his new shield.

I ask that question without any proof, but it wouldn't surprise me if many Redskins fans and critics are excusing Jackson while condemning Griffin. Again, it's a what have you done for me lately world and Jackson is their new toy. Jackson's abscence is not a significant one in the grand scheme of things, but if I was him and had the reputation that he has clearly earned throughout his career in Philadelphia, I would have done everything to cancel the vacation.

It would have been the right thing to do. DeAngelo Hall is also on a vacation with his family - however I would point this out - when you are a Dad as Hall is, you sometimes have to go when your kids can.  Hall is this team's defensive leader, and I would argue that he has replaced London Fletcher as being   a significant voice of reason. While it would be nice to have him there, he knows the entire defensive staff and they know him. He knows most of his teammates. Ultimately, both Jackson and Hall are not doing anything wrong. They are allowed and the Redskins could NEVER tell them no.

You know why they can't? They would be in direct violation of the CBA. There's simply nothing the Redskins can do. It just seems odd to me that so many Redskins fans would question Griffin's commitment, despite doing everything he reasonably could to be prepared and get on the right track - yet many fans are just fine with Jackson not being with his new team while doing something personally beneficial.

I'm not trying to turn this into a Jackson vs. Griffin III debate. There is none. I am trying to point out the assinine criticism of Griffin III's work ethic or commitment to the Washington Redskins. That has to stop. That is dead wrong.

Chris Russell - SFTheRooster@Yahoo.com - www.twitter.com/russellmania980


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Is DeSean Worth the Drama?
by Chris Russell
Apr 07, 2014 -- 11:38am


DeSean Jackson is now officially a member of the Washington Redskins. Congratulations to him and of course I hope it works out well.

Color me still concerned that this has a less than 25% chance of the acquisition working out perfectly or even ideally. It's not exactly as if the Redskins have a good history with this type of thing


Sure that is easy to say, and my definition or expectations are different than most Redskins fans.  I have no choice but to think with a reasonably calm and level head. Occassionally (OK, frequently) that doesn't happen because my personality is pretty wacky, but my point is - I can't sit here and tell you that I feel this move will work like 99% of you feel it will.


Let's get this out of the way. It's not about the reported gang affiliations.  I don't know or really care if Jackson knows some really bad people who do awful things.

As Santana Moss told ESPN 980 last week "We're all affiliated with those kind of people, because we grew up around that and that's what some of the inner-city kids that's in the  league grew up around."  

All I care about is that Jackson doesn't do any of those activities and this isn't going to turn into a complete unmitigated disaster.

I am hoping that taking pictures and associating yourself with those types of vicious bullies is just a poor decision or two. However, as the New England Patriots and the world found out with Aaron Hernandez - whatever you think you know - that's not good enough.

Perhaps you can say that about anyone, but a bad decision is much easier to be made when you are around or influenced by bad people.

OK so we move past that, and wonder this. Will he finally shed his well-earned reputation and be a productive, content 27-year old player who has the world by the foot-balls?

He better. The Redskins are making a significant financial commitment, with two years and essentially a fully guaranteed 16 million dollar commitment. A signing that protects Jackson for skill and injury, and more importantly for a "coaches decision" if he is not practicing hard or doesn't fully commit himself. The jury is out on all of those issues, but Jackson  clearly is misunderstood and an angel in some eyes.

In others, he is a DIVA or a P.I.T.A. You can figure that one out on your own. Stories like these will come out on a regular basis,  or even former teammates will take their shots to some degree.

What can possibly go wrong? If the Redskins lose, anything and everything can go wrong from disgruntled, frustrated players that feel like they should be getting more opportunities all the way to criticism of the quarterback, the first time head coach or the fortified but far from dominant defense.

That's understandable. Everybody wants to win. My question is how will Jackson handle himself if the Redskins win? Say he's only averaging four catches and 55 yards per game in Week 11, yet the Redskins are (7-3) with their bye included.

That would be great, right? Everybody would be giddy, correct? You would hope so, but we've seen plenty of athletes who know their number$  turn into the only number$ many care about. Money. Jackson has been disgruntled with his contract status for his entire career. That's not a media creation.

In 2011, Jackson was suspended by Andy Reid for missing a meeting. It was the right thing to do, and something that Jackson now has protection against with the Redskins. A spokesman of his at the time said "DeSean missed a meeting and he should be punished for that," but "this is all part of an ongoing contract dispute with the Eagles."

At the end of last season, off a division championship and a career year by far - Jackson was not happy with his contractual status and made that known, despite reportedly skipping an exit meeting.

That, along with perhaps some other confidential and previously untapped information was the end for Kelly and the entire Eagles organization. Make  no mistake. The move to move on from Jackson was not just a Chip Kelly choice, it's an organizational choice. No matter what you think.

Just like the addition of Jackson to the Redskins is not just a Jay Gruden choice. Or even a Dan Snyder call. Sure, there can be mixed opinion on a player and a calculated risk, but ultimately this was a multi-person agreement.

Back to the original question. What happens if the Redskins have a terrific year and make it to the NFC Championship game, before losing in Seattle. Everybody in Redskins nation would be going insane. In a good way. Jackson, presumably would be a big part of that success and for argument sake - let's say he had 75 catches 1,200 yards and ten touchdowns. Fair? I think so.

When the dust settles, with one year of guaranteed money only left on the table - would Jackson start to look at his contract and wonder if he will get more? Will he complain about wanting more? History tells us only one thing.

You might be saying "I don't care, it's not my money." However, I would caution you that YES it is your money, and more importantly a disgruntled and unhappy Jackson leads to drama down the line. He'll be on a honeymoon presumably in 2014. It's after this season that would be of most concern to me.

The other thing that I know, that you might not care about, is that the Washington Redskins organization has NEVER (at least in the last five years) been good at handling controversy and pummelling fires. In New England, from a distance, you heard the Patriots talk about  the Aaron Hernandez murder charges one-time  and then they focused on winning and winning only.

At Redskins Park, the talking never ends. Somebody, somewhere is always saying or doing something controversial. It's just the way it is. Blame whoever you want (you will blame the media for all of it) but that's the truth. I want to be careful here because I want athletes and coaches to give you something interesting, but I only really care about football interesting and not lifestyle interesting.

I've  always been of the thought that the Redskins need to be a carbon copy of Bill Belichick, Tom Brady and the Patriots in more ways than one. Just shut up and be boring for once. Boring is good for me. I will gladly sign up for it.

You should as well. Boring wins football games and allows you to focus on nothing but trying to get better. Some teams and players talk the talk way too much, instead of doing what they should be doing, which is walk the walk.

Chris Russell - SFTheRooster@Yahoo.com - www.twitter.com/russellmania980


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Why D-Jax is a 'slam dunk' for the Redskins
by Chris Russell
Apr 02, 2014 -- 4:00pm


There are many reasons to like the signing of DeSean Jackson for the Washington Redskins. I get it, even though I still think it is an enormous risk. I understand what he does and he does it well.

Jackson has elite speed that can take the top off of a defense and change coverages. Good guy,  Mark Bullock (@UKRedskin1) diagrammed some of this in his latest post on WashingtonPost.com

Jackson, coming off of a career year  has to be considered the most dangerous offensive weapon the Redskins have had since as far back as December 2012 before Robert Griffin III was injured.

Jackson will force teams to play more two deep safety looks, which will help out the Redskins running attack. Teams have been able to to take their chances (especially last year) on loading up against the run and trying to overwhelm the offensive line and running game at the point of attack.

Jackson will make Pierre Garcon, Jordan Reed and Alfred Morris much more dangerous. If Reed is healthy, he could have a field day working the middle of the field on two deep coverage. Garcon loves to run dig routes and work multi-level crossers.

Jackson's prescence gives Leonard Hankerson and the Redskins an opportunity to start training camp on the pre-season PUP so that he can fully get healthy. Who knows what Aldrick Robinson's role will be but it would be really interesting to see Jackson and Robinson on the field at the same time on opposite sides of the formation.

The Redskins were clearly targeting a veteran wide receiver in free agency. As it turns out, they were targeting three proven pass catchers despite an inordinate amount of depth at the position next month's draft.

They brought back Santana Moss on a one year contract with a very low cap hit. They inked Arizona's Andre Roberts to a multi-year deal and they pursued Kenny Britt, who signed a one-year deal with the St. Louis Rams.

All along they knew that it was possible that Jackson would be released because no team was going to take on his contract and pay the Eagles some sort of compensation for him. The Eagles buckled and the Redskins got him away from Philadelphia and on their side for a relatively modest cost.  It was a "slam-dunk" as one person put it.

An NFL coach familiar with the Eagles, Jackson's talent and the Redskins  texted me on Saturday night after the news first broke that Jackson was going to visit Redskins Park and said "BTW, DeSean Jackson would be an absolute perfect match for Robert...would be a homerun for the Redskins if they got him!"

Another NFL coach via text to ESPN 980 said this about Jackson late on Tuesday night, "You have to have the right locker room, but my thinking is his speed/cutting ability skill-set doesn't exist in this draft, last year's draft or any other draft since he came out. A risk? Yes, but in my opinion, a worthy risk."

Jackson played the 'Z' wide receiver position in Philadelphia (off the line, and more of a  motion guy)  but will mostly likely and almost primarily play the "X" receiver spot here in Washington. That's because as coaching sources have explained, the 'Z' receiver in the majority of West Coast offenses is generally "the more phyical, slower receiver who is responsible for blocking safeties a little more than the X."

The 'X' usually has to be on the line of scrimmage for a legal formation. Pierre Garcon did essentially play some elements of the "Z" position last year, because the Redskins motion their tight ends so often and will very likely be essentially what happens this year. Clearly, the Redskins have several hybrid targets that can play different positions and can certainly blend and manipulate their scheme to whatever they want to do.

Jackson also has been an ace punt returner early in his career. As Devin Hester proved against the Redskins special teams unit last year, you can have long distance success at any point and return one all the way, even after you have been on a respite from the end zone.

Jackson's numbers as a punt returner have been minimal over the last few years with just 14 returns for 71 yards anda 5.1 average in 2013. He only had one return for minus yardage in 2012 and 17 returns for 114 yards and a 6.7 average in 2011. He hasn't scored a touchdown as a returner  since 2010.

In fairness he did have four touchdowns in the first three years of his career and in 2009, averaged 15.2 yards per return.

While that may seem like a negative, it isn't exactly if you spin it a certain way. Santana Moss, at a much more advanced age last year averaged more yards per punt return than did Jackson. The point is, Jackson will be used in limited spot duty. He will be used as a spark. That's why Moss had more statistical success. He wasn't out there every time, and had to be put in that position by the former coaching staff.

If the Redskins need a big return to change momentum, you might see him out there. Assuming Richard Crawford makes it all the way back, he'll be the primary returner. Perhaps Chris Thompson is in that role, but again, health is the determinant there. The newly acquired Roberts can also help out when called upon, as can Moss assuming he makes the roster.

The bottomline on Jackson is this. He got paid very well (again) and should be happier with a coaching staff that really wanted him and was willing to overlook all of the risks for the talent he provides. He'll be facing the Eagles twice a year, in the prime of his career.

He provides the Redskins something they have not had, although one would argue that the Redskins still do not have ideally what you would like in a top-flight wide receiver. Robert Griffin's skill set, when healthy, is a perfect match for Jackson's vertical ability and his addition should make everyone else a little bit better.

As long as Jackson stays on the straight and narrow, the Redskins will have hit a home-run on the gridiron.

Chris Russell - SFTheRooster@Yahoo.com - www.twitter.com/russellmania980


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DeSean in DC
by Chris Russell
Apr 02, 2014 -- 1:20am

The Redskins and DeSean Jackson have struck a deal on a three year contract, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter.

According to my buddy Mike Garafolo of FOX SPORTS, "it's apparently a whopper," of a three-year deal.

I'll have more thoughts on this in the morning, but the only way this is an acceptable deal in my eyes is if the contract is front-loaded to make Jackson happy and to minimize as much as possible the damage that is normally associated with mega deals after the lower cap value of a first year.


The other way is Jackson has to not gripe about his contract, not get in any trouble, not get benched or deactivated, not be a bad teammate and oh yeah, the Redskins need to win or at least make a Super Bowl to justify this kind of risk.


I know that is a lot, but I have top-shelf expectations if a player is going to come with this kind of risk. The Redskins are an organization that have chewed up a lot of free agents with a huge question mark hovering over them as they arrive.


Let me be clear about this. I am still opposed to this move, and nobody is going to convince me that this will work like a charm. It could work brilliantly for a year, but this is not a one-year trial or getting to know you period.


I hope it works for the Redskins. I just have little faith that it will. The writing is on the wall. DC does stand for "Drama City" as one ex-Redskins player used to say.

Sorry to be so negative, while you are drinking the kool-aid. I have heard from thousands of Redskins fans who already didn't like me. Having an opinion that is contrary to their vision has done nothing to make them like me. However, the best thing about this - only time will tell.

This is not on me. This is on DeSean to prove that Chip Kelly was wrong. To prove that the Eagles were wrong. To prove that NJ.com  was wrong. To shut everyone up that has wrote column after column.

More importantly, this is on DeSean Jackson to prove that the Redskins were right. To prove that DeAngelo Hall and Robert Griffin III's faith in him as a talent and more importantly as a person was justified.

This is on DeSean Jackson to show you and prove to you EVERY DAY that Dan Snyder was justified for getting involved, and to Bruce Allen and Jay Gruden who made other decisions together before this - but THIS is how their new regime will be defined.


Good luck DeSean. You need it. It's all on you now.

 

Chris Russell - SFTheRooster@Yahoo.com - www. twitter.com/russellmania980


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D-Hall on DeSean: "I'm going to take him under my wing"
by Chris Russell
Mar 30, 2014 -- 11:53am

The Philadelphia Eagles cut him after having a monster, career year in his prime. The Kansas City Chiefs, a team run by the man who drafted him and gave him a huge contract that he was largely unhappy with a year into - looked into him and said no thanks.

Yet, DeSean Jackson is not only drawing interest from the Redskins. He's coming to visit them first. Yup. The Redskins clearly know something that Chip Kelly, Howie Roseman, Andy Reid and John Dorsey don't know.

We wrote about this possibility  on Friday
, and then Saturday afternoon NFL Network reported that the Redskins and Bills were "wild-card" contenders.


By Saturday evening, Jackson was scheduled to visit Redskins Park on Monday according to NBC Washington's Dianna Russini.

In between all of this, several team sources reached out and while not directly revealing their plans, it is clear that the Redskins are smitten with Jackson's dynamic ability. Ok that part is easy, although I have my doubts about him.

The money part would still have to work out. Many questions remain on exactly what kind of person Jackson really is.

I suppose that at this point, Jackson might be looking at Washington as a situation of having the best quarterback and the most direct route to shove it right back in Chip Kelly's face.

I understand that thinking on his end. The Redskins still have enough money  to make a pretty good contract offer and things could move quickly, especially if Dan Snyder is as involved as it sounds like he might be and if the Redskins start acting irresponsibly when it comes to diva's with plenty of baggage and a bad reputation.

Saturday night, Ryan Kerrigan and Torrey Smith hosted a charity basketball game  at Comcast Center in College Park, Maryland to benefit their respective foundations, and the main football focus was about one thing and one thing only. Desean Jackson's impact. On both the Eagles and potentially the Redskins.

"Huge, huge, man," Redskins cornerback DeAngelo Hall told ESPN 980 and CSN Washington after the game."If we could add a piece like that, the kind of threat he is whenever the ball is in hands. It automatically makes the special teams better. He’s a deep threat. You can’t put eight in the box. Man, if we could pull that off."

Hall, never one to mince words, was re-signed by the Redskins before free agency began but was expecting more when the gates opened for real, "I was a little disappointed early on in free agency, but if we could pull that off (signing Jackson), hell, that would make my day, make my year."

An NFL coach very familiar with Jackson and the Redskins, reached out to me unsolicited via text on Saturday night and thought that Jackson would be a "absolute perfect match for Robert...he would be a homerun for the Redskins if they got him."

At this point, no player is worried about the impact the circus coming back to town. That's understandable and predictable. Niles Paul, a former wide reciever and current Redskins tight end, called the NFL "one big fraternity" and wasn't concerned about any of the downside that Jackson could potentially bring.

"I think DeSean Jackson would be a nice edition to our team," Paul told ESPN 980 and CSN Washington. "A definite improvement to our offense and another weapon for RG3 to have. He’s a speed guy. He’s a blazer. That would be a nice addition to the wide receiver corps we have right now."

Again, from a football perspective - you can make anything work. However, is he guaranteed to be exactly what image you have in your head? No. Free agents fail all the time. They fall off in performance quickly if they are not driven and on a mission. No doubt, Jackson will be on a mission to prove the Eagles made a mistake, but that still doesn't guarantee anything.

Then there is the controversial nature of the Jackson situation. No matter what you believe, and I believe some of it - but not all - Jackson has the potential to be a nightmare. He also is likely to live right on the edge of never totally crossing the line, but always keeping it blurry. One thing we know is that many people that have been around him view him as a diva.

I could have missed something, but I don't see any Eagles players coming out loudly in support of Jackson. The jury seems to be completely split on him, depending on who you talk with or what story  you believe.

Are the reported gang ties, missed meetings, and selfishness enough to make the Redskins not take chance? Clearly, they think it's worth the risk to some degree. There's no concerns in DeAngelo Hall's view.

"Not at all. I feel like our locker room has a good group of young guys, a good group of old guys, man. Some of the things he’s been going through lately, that’s life," Hall said on Saturday night. "That’s life. We’ve all been through something, so …if he’s able to come here, man, I’m going to take him under my wing and just try to put him on the right path."

 Bottom line, the players are all ears and giddy about the  possibility. Paul told ESPN 980 "We always welcome guys with open arms, no hard feelings."

Easy to say that in late March/early April. Let's see what their reaction is if and when something goes wrong, and the Redskins locker room is left to clean up the carnage. That's been a storyline all too often over the last five years, and something that has destroyed any chance of normalcy at Redskins Park.

Chris Russell - SFTheRooster@Yahoo.com - www.twitter.com/russellmania980


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