Redskins’ offensive tackle Jammal Brown just didn’t feel the same last season as he tried to play through a nagging, 2-year-old left hip injury.
As a result, he told CBS DC’s David Elfin, Brown said he didn’t feel as explosive as usual as he tried to make it through the 2011 season.
But one drastic change to his offseason conditioning program has Brown feeling much, much better.
Brown recently told Elfin he has been aided by a yoga routine that makes him feel as if he could return to his Pro Bowl form.
“Last year, my hip was a little sore and I pulled my groin (which) I think was from (the) hip,” Brown explained to Elfin. “When I pulled my groin, there was times it was real, real sore, but this is football and if you can play, you play. I couldn’t (play with) as much power as I wanted or move exactly the way I wanted. I feel like I’m moving better and I can play with a stronger base. The most important things for an offensive lineman (are) being able to stay low and have a wide base. I know what I can do. I just want to get healthy so I can show it.”
Brown injured the hip in the summer of 2009 while he was playing for the New Orleans Saints, the team that selected him 13th overall in the 2005 NFL draft.
Up until that point, Brown was a two-time Pro Bowl selection, but the Saints eventually put the offensive lineman on the season-ending injured reserved list before trading him to the Redskins the next summer.
Since that time, Brown has started 26 of the Redskins’ 32 games, but still felt the effects of the hip injury. So he took the advice of a couple friends and began doing yoga — something that Brown said took some time to get used to.
“(Yoga) definitely felt funny (at first),” Brown told Elfin. “It doesn’t look hard, but when you’re in (the studio) and it’s 105 degrees and you try to hold a pose, try to hold your thumbs and palms together, it’s tough. On top of that, I had to come (to Redskins Park) and do a workout (afterwards) so it got real tough for a while.”
After sticking with the yoga routine, Brown said he’s noticed a change for the better in his overall abilities.
His head coach, Mike Shanahan, has, too.
“That hip that he’s had that tear on looks better than it’s ever looked,” Shanahan said. “His flexibility is 100 percent different than it was the last two years.
“Right now I feel better about Jammal Brown than I have since I’ve been here.”
Brown is one of several Redskins offensive linemen with experience that Shanahan will lean on to protect rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III.
“We believe we helped ourselves just with [Brown] getting better,” Shanahan said. “Hopefully these other guys keep on getting better and give us some depth as well.”
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