Ex-Redskins of the Week: Rock Cartwright, Special Teams, Oakland Raiders, Shaun Suisham, Kicker, Pittsburgh Steelers
In the first ever tie for Ex-Redskin of the Week, Redskins Hog Heaven gets to show some love to a fan favorite, Rock Cartwright. Rock was never flashy. He will never make the Hall of Fame, or even the Redskins Ring of Honor. But in his eight seasons in Washington, we were sold on his passion more than his running skills.
Cartwright's passion caught our eye in the Football News Now story Cartwright Takes Blame For Raiders Loss to Dolphins. Um, right. Cartwright's critical miss on a low-odds punt block was the single-biggest cause for the Raiders' 33-17 blowout loss to the 'Phins. It's not as if Cartwright had a gaffe that took points off the board.
Cartwright holds himself personally accountable and treats his every play as a game-changing event. That's what makes Cartwright as solid as his name implies. And it's why he is named our co-Ex-Redskin of the Week.
Shaun Suisham was not good enough for the Dannyhan era, but he had the good fortune to land on his feet on the Pittsburgh Steelers Roster. The change of scenery may be the change of fortune he needs. Cut twice by both Washington and Dallas, Suisham won the job to replace Pittsburgh's suddenly sucky kicker, Jeff Reed. Suisham rewarded the Steelers by going four for four in field goal attempts against the Bills, including the overtime-game winner.
It's hard to make talent decisions for sports teams. The Redskins, for all their struggles over two decades to field a balanced, deep, talented roster, have had and let go of some talented role-players. Suisham had trouble with deep kick-offs, but made 18 of 21 field goal attempts in 2009. Now he's closer to a Super Bowl with the Steelers than he would have been in Washington.
So here's to Shaun and everyone else who keeps the faith and stays ready for that next opportunity when teams, or life, deals a setback.
Ex-Redskin of the Weak: Devin Thomas, Wide Receiver, New York Giants.
OK. We know what this is really about. Devin Thomas did not appear for the Giants in the Jaguars game, but he has the inside knowledge of how to beat out Washington CB DeAngelo Hall. PU-lease
Redskins Hog Heaven was critical of the LaVar-bashing a few years back during Arrington's messy divorce from former friend, Dan Snyder. Thus, we are not going to sink to snide remarks about what Thomas knows about the Redskins' playbook. But the Giants, who have a genuine need for wide receiver help just now, reached deep when they claimed Thomas off waivers last week.
As a Spartan grad, I hoped Thomas could find some measure of success elsewhere, if not on the Redskins. Thomas couldn't stick with the woeful 1-9 Carolina Panthers, who made a quicker decision about DT than Mike Shanahan did. Thomas had one appearance for the Panthers with nothing to show for it. Alas, Thomas is closer to ex-Spartans Charles Rogers's career trajectory than to Derrick Mason's. That's just weak.
Point after: Shaun Suisham is a candidate for the NFL.com GMC Never Say Never Player of Week 12. Sure. Go ahead and vote for him. We'll be here when you get back.