Growing up just two blocks from RFK Stadium in a tough Southeast, Washington, DC neighborhood, wide receiver Joshua Morgan was able to endure a lot of uncertainty and escape a childhood riddled with temptation and tragedy.
One thing that motivated him athletically from Day 1 was a passion and love for the Washington Redskins.
Since infancy, Morgan had little choice but to root for his hometown Redskins. He was born into a family of avid Redskins fans and raised on Redskins football.
So when he received a phone call from an Ashburn, Va. area code in the early moments of free agency 2012, there was no doubt in his mind that he wanted to play football for the team he spent his childhood dreaming about.
“It hasn’t even hit me yet, it was surreal,” said Morgan in his first interview after signing his contract. “This was a dream come true. Not even in my wildest dreams did I picture I’d be coming home.”
No matter what, the Redskins are in his blood.
Since becoming a member of the Redskins, Morgan has made a commitment to channel tragedy into giving back off the field.
This past season while most of the Redskins players spent time relaxing on their designated days off, Morgan became a familiar face in the community with the Washington Redskins Charitable Foundation.
Morgan cited fallen and incarcerated friends who may still be around if they had had role models to point them in the right direction.
The receiver made a commitment to giving back to children that needed an alternative to the tragedy he witnessed as a child and teen.
His volunteer efforts included:
And the list goes on.
On the football field, Morgan battled through preseason injury to lead the team in receptions (48), filling a leadership and production void left by receiver Pierre Garçon, due to injury.
Morgan appeared in all 16 games this season, and was one of four Redskins receivers to go over 500 yards receiving (510) with three touchdowns. By season’s end, he became one of quarterback Robert Griffin III’s most reliable and trusted targets.
He may not be the flashiest receiver out there but he gets the job done. He may not be the loudest guy in the locker room but his soft-spoken demeanor carries a quiet confidence that his teammates notice.
Earlier this year during a reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything) with CB Josh Wilson, Wilson was asked, “Who is the most physical wide receiver you’ve ever played against?”
Wilson responded, “Josh Morgan. When I was in Seattle I had to play him twice a year and twice a year in college. I’m so glad he’s on my team now.” His answer did not include the likes of an Andre Johnson, or a Calvin Johnson, or any other bigger bodied receiver; his answer was Southeast D.C.’s own, Joshua Morgan.
Maybe one can credit Morgan’s intensity and physicality to his upbringing in a tough area of Southeast D.C. But whatever the reason, his counterparts around the league recognize his fearlessness and determination.
This 5th-year wide receiver says he’s living a dream. Morgan’s career has brought him full-circle back to his hometown playing for the team and the city that he loved so much as a youngster.
Playing for the Redskins started as a dream. Now, that dream has become a reality.
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Tags: football, Josh Morgan, NFL, washington redskins, wide receiver
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