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10 For 80: Jon Jansen

Posted by Andrew Walker on June 25, 2012 – 3:25 pm

Note: The Redskins Blog will be profiling several former players, coaches and team officials eligible to be voted by you, the fans, in this year’s Redskins 80th Anniversary celebration. To vote for Jon Jansen or your 10 other all-timers to join the already-chosen list of the 70 Greatest Redskins, go to http://www.redskins80th.com/

He was about as country as country gets, known for driving his pickup truck full of fishing gear or even a Winnebago to Redskins Park for practices.

But make no mistake — though Jon “Rock” Jansen loved the outdoors and his country spirit, he also loved punishing defensive linemen, linebackers and anybody else who came his way in a career where he became one of the greatest right tackles in Redskins history.

Jansen hails from Clawson, Mich., a smaller community with a population hovering around 12,000. He starred on offense and defense at Clawson High School before becoming known as “Rock” at the University of Michigan, where he set a school record by starting in 50 straight games.

Jansen was the Redskins’ second-round (37th overall) selection in the 1999 NFL Draft, and made an immediate impact on the team’s offensive line. It wasn’t until 2006 — his seventh year in the league — that Jansen didn’t start all 16 games he played in, and in that 2006 season, he started all 15 games in which he played.

Jansen was a constant on the offensive line in a decade dominated by Redskins’ running backs Stephen Davis and Clinton Portis. Davis rushed for 4,975 yards in his four years with Jansen as his right tackle; Portis rushed for 6,103 yards in his five seasons alongside Jansen.

When all was said and done, Jansen started 123 of the 126 games he played in during his nine-year career with the Redskins.

He also played tough through several injuries throughout his career. He played most of the 2005 season with two broken thumbs, but still managed to open gaping holes for Portis, who rushed for 1,516 yards and 11 touchdowns that season.

Through it all, Jansen prided himself on rarely missing a snap — or even a practice — during his time in Washington.

“Playing offensive line, you’re going to get banged up, but you lead by example playing through it,” Jansen told the Washington Times in 2007. “I like proving I’m tougher than the next guy.”

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