The Washington Redskins signed LB Keyaron Fox to the roster over the weekend. They accompanied the move with the release of LB Robert Henson and LB Chris Wilson. Call it a like-for-like move since Fox, Henson and Wilson are reserves. Fox appeared in 85 games over seven seasons with the Kansas City Chiefs and the Pittsburgh Steelers, but started only seven times. He is credited with 95 tackles over that span, only five tackles last season with Pittsburgh. Henson last appeared for Washington in 2009 when he played in six games.
Wilson was a role player you loved to follow. He hustled to his ability. He appeared in 32 games over the past two seasons, none as starter. Wilson is credited with 65 total tackles and six sacks over that span. He signed with the Philadelphia Eagles Monday.
The poignant side note for Henson is that he was informed of his release almost immediately after tweeting how much he was looking forward to Saturday's Fan Appreciation Day practice.
The addition of Fox had an unsettling influence on LB H.B. Blades; The Redskins list him as Horatio now. Blades tweeted his frustration with the linebackers ahead of him, implying that his time with the team was short.
I'll give a man in his youth some slack for frustration. Perhaps DC Jim Haslett will do the same. Horatio's Dad, Bennie, would not have responded that way. Bennie was a tough, hard-hitting defensive back. He would have put his head down and competed for his roster spot as if someone was taking food from his baby's mouth.
So son, put your head down and compete. By the way, lose the "Horatio" moniker. I think the team saw "Horatio Blades" and thought it was someone else. It may help to know that Haslett is as much under the gun as you are.
Mike Shanahan finally said what we've been saying all along about John Beck. The coach never said that Beck was the starting Redskins quarterback.
“First of all, I’ve never mentioned a starter,” Shanahan told Albert Breer of the NFL Network, per the WaPOST's Dan Steinberg. “I’ve never even insinuated a starter. I said I had a lot of belief in John Beck, I had a lot of belief in Rex Grossman. We’re gonna play the best player at the end of camp, but I do believe in both those guys. I’ve watched them practice. You make decisions based on practice. I’ve watched both these guys for a year, I like what they bring to the table. Now I get a chance to watch them compete on a day-to-day basis.”
The coach just said he liked Beck and everyone ran away with that because Donovan McNabb was publically fired off the roster and the then No. 1 quarterback, Grossman, was not re-signed before the lockout. Beck moved up by default. I think coach gets a kick out of keeping everyone lost and confused while implementing his hidden agenda: Kellen Clemens.
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I will be looking for game evidence of how we are better off now than with Jason Campbell. Only four more days until the exhibition game against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Beck missed practice Monday while working through a mild groin injury. He says he will be ready for the Steelers game. Grossman took most of the snaps with the starting offense.
It's hardly news that Malcolm Kelly was again held from practice because of a foot injury. So we are not going to report it. From now on, it will be newsworthy when he practices.
First round draft pick Ryan Kerrigan joined full contact practice after sitting out a week with a knee injury. Kerrigan is attempting a switch from defensive end, his position at Purdue, to outside linebacker opposite Brian Orakpo. Me thinks Kerrigan will not see much action against Pittsburg Friday evening and I'm OK with that. It's a long season. Rushing back from a knee injury didn't to Tiger Woods any good.
CB Kevin Barnes is a local favorite because of his Maryland Terrapins tie. Fans have high hopes for him as he is gets his first shot to lock-up a starter role as nickel-back. Barnes switched his jersey number to 22, the number once worn by Carlos Rogers.
P Saverio Rocca joined the team Saturday after his flight from Australia. The lockout delayed issuance of Rocca's work visa. Rocca says that process was shortened to about five days. It usually takes weeks to process a visa. It was a new circumstance to Redskins fans puzzled about the whole deal. Rocca's punts consistently average about 43 yards. He nets just under 39 yards. Net punts are more a measure of coverage. Forty-yard punts make Rocca a weapon worth waiting for. Field position, people!
Shanahan will churn lots of people on and off the 90-man roster this preseason. You won't be able to tell who is rising or falling from those up-to-the minute tweets by the Redskins coverage media at training camp. Tweets feed a fanbase hungry for any Redskins news, but they just don't mean anything until you see the players in live action.
Monday's Washington Post carried a profile of Eric Schaffer, Redskins vice president of football administration, who worked the numbers on free agent contracts. Absolutely no reason why anyone would be interested in such things unless you want to know how players are properly valued, salary caps are properly managed, dead-cap is properly avoided and.... Well you get the idea.
I like what the Redskins are doing this offseason, so I like what Schaffer is doing this offseason. I cannot tell how much to credit Schaffer yet. He is a Snyderrato carryover, afterall. Lets recognize that no one says "no" to Dan Snyder and allow that Schaffer is better directed at least. The story is a good read. If you are interested, look here.