Over the course of camp, I’ve written mostly positive reviews of John Beck, which has drawn the excitement of some, and the skepticism of others. I’m here to clear the air, lest I be accused of “fluffery” again.
Beck was brought in on a minor deal last year to be a third-string quarterback. The man has not thrown a pass in a regulation NFL game since 2007. I get all that, but he has some qualities that could make him successful for this team.
First, he’s a mobile quarterback, and is very accurate on the move. He’s not Michael Vick, and I don’t know that you would call him a dual threat. But going up against some of the blitzes he will face this year, he better be able to move. So far he’s been able to keep his eyes downfield, find that open man, and put the ball in his hands.
Second of all, he takes care of the football. I haven’t seen a fumble on the quarterback exchange since the first day of practice, and his comfort with center Will Montgomery should only improve. He also needs to learn the tendencies of his receivers, which will take time.
I find it hard just to remember all 11 names.
Like I said yesterday, when he’s throwing short and misses, he puts the ball into the ground. When he’s throwing long, he misses long. These are the safest places to miss, because they’re the places least likely to be picked off.
His receivers are still learning the routes and they’re still learning him. But he’s gaining the trust of his teammates (which won’t really be tested until games begin), and the coaching staff has put him out there as the man to beat.
To put it simply, he does a lot of things well, and doesn’t try to do too much. Does that mean he’s the answer at quarterback? Not necessarily, but it’s the fifth day of practice and he looks alright out there.
With that being said, here are today’s…
Notes on offense:
Beck looked much better today on the deep ball than he has all camp, completing several and only overthrowing one. He and Anthony Armstrong hooked up on a 45-yard pass against DeAngelo Hall. Hall has been covering Armstrong for most of camp, and Armstrong is starting to gain traction.
Beck also hit Malcolm Kelly for a deep pass on busted coverage near the sidelines. Beck had much nicer touch today, and good vision downfield.
Receiver Niles Paul continues to impress with his opportunities at receiver. He’s bailed Beck out a couple times on passes over his head, and generally catches anything he touches.
Undrafted free agent running back Shaun Draughn has gotten a lot of looks out on the field, and has performed well so far. More on him to follow.
Free agent quarterbacks Rex Grossman and Kellen Clemens were both present at practice today and were playing long toss on the back field while the rest of the team did 11-on-11.
Practice ended on a game situation, where the offense lined up against the defense, with a first down at the defense’s 30-yard line. The first play, the receivers were blanketed and Beck ran out of bounds for a two yard gain. On second-and-eight, the running back got bottled up for a one-yard gain. On third-and-seven, Beck dropped back and hit Fred Davis slanting over the middle, who ran the last five yards for a touchdown.
They made this drive look easy. I hope I get to type that a lot this season.
Tags: john beck, offense, washington redskins
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