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LaRon Landry Headed To Injured Reserve; Kicker Tryouts Tomorrow

Posted by Matt Terl on December 13, 2010 – 3:38 pm

The big news and notes out of Mike Shanahan’s Monday afternoon press conference is actually summed up in that headline and countless tweets, but here it is as a bullet-pointed list, for those who prefer their news with little circles in front of it:

  • LaRon Landry is heading to injured reserve, ending pretty much the main bright spot of the 2010 Redskins season. “We’ve talked about him throughout the year,” Shanahan said. “I thought during the first half of the season that he’d be MVP with the way he was playing. Hopefully he can get well and be ready to go for next season.”
  • Carlos Rogers is expected to return to action this week, however.
  • The team is bringing in some kickers for tryouts, although mainly because of Graham Gano‘s injury, not because they’ve lost faith in him. “We’ve still got a lot of confidence in him even though he had a rough day,” Shanahan said. “As I told him, I think it’s more mental than anything else. I’ve watched him do it consistently in practice, even though he didn’t obviously have a good game. I know he’s very disappointed. We’re disappointed, but I’ve still got a lot of belief in him. So, hopefully he can clear it up this week.”
  • For all the frustration this season, Shanhan made it clear that he’s not frustrated, nor is he surprised by the amount of work that it’s going to take to restore the Redskins to prominence. “Going from four wins to a chance to win the Super Bowl takes some time,” Shanahan said. “It doesn’t happen overnight. It’s a day-by-day process. There’s a lot to do in the offseason relative to the draft and free agency, as we all know. And we’ve still got three games of evaluation, again, three pretty good and talented football teams. We’ll get a good feel of who will be with us after we take a look at the last three games of however players play.”

The happiest guy in the press conference room, though, took the podium after Shanahan stepped down. That was Jim Spillane, of Bristow, Va., who won the first of the three available million dollar prizes on the Virginia Lottery’s Redskins Legacy scratcher. And he addressed the media as well.
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How Graham Gano Spent His Sunday Evening, And Other Links

Posted by Matt Terl on December 13, 2010 – 2:18 pm

Graham Gano was eerily calm and confident in last night’s postgame locker room, even as he acknowledged the possibility that the Redskins might bring in some tryout kickers on Tuesday. But his night didn’t end there, and Rich Campbell of the Free Lance-Star explains what Gano did next.

So after he drove home from FedEx Field with his wife, Brittany, and spent a bit of time with her, he headed to Redskins Park and spent the night watching film of each field goal he kicked from the start of the season through the fifth game.

“As soon as the game was over, I was looking to get better,” Gano said this morning. “Everybody is upset about it, but no one more than me. I was ready to put it behind me and figure out what I was doing wrong.”

Gano is a likeable guy and seems to have the necessary psychological makeup for the frankly insane job of being an NFL kicker, but as he himself notes in Campbell’s story, he needs to get the mechanical issues squared away pretty quickly if he’s going to stick around.

Other links of note:

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Logan Paulsen's Minimalist Response To His First Touchdown

Posted by Matt Terl on December 13, 2010 – 10:12 am

Logan Paulsen scored his first NFL touchdown yesterday, and didn’t even get to keep the ball, lost forever to an enthusiastic celebratory spike. But the undrafted rookie tight end wouldn’t have changed anything about the celebration. “I was in the moment and the experience was so unique,” Paulsen said. “It was just, like, so spontaneous, I don’t think I would. But it’d be nice to have a football, for sure.”

Given Paulsen’s long hair, full beard, and California roots (high school at Chaminade in Northridge; college at UCLA), the temptation is strong to paint him as a slightly hippie-ish NFL guy. And, frankly, pretty much everything that I’ve heard him say just enhances that impression. His focus on the unique experience of his celebration, for example.

Or this, about what was going through his head when the ball was in the air, coming his way in the end zone on a crucial fourth-and-goal play: Read more »

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