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Started From The Bottom

Posted by Gabe Hiatt on October 24, 2013 – 4:59 pm

Darrel Young

Author’s note: Listen to this in another tab if you’re incapable of reading without consuming at least three other forms of media in the background.

Redskins fullback Darrel Young and Broncos linebacker Wesley Woodyard impressed the same man to start their careers. On Sunday, they’ll collide at the line of scrimmage.

Both players started from the bottom. They were undrafted free agents who ran with opportunities extended by Mike Shanahan.

When Young watched film this week, he saw a kindred spirit in Woodyard, who is expected return to action after missing the past two weeks.

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Coach’s Turn: Mike Shanahan At The Mic

Posted by Stephen Czarda on October 24, 2013 – 3:39 pm

(AP Image)

(AP Image)

Washington Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan kept his press conference short and sweet this afternoon, deflecting the 1,367th question about his return and instead sharing the most up-to-date injury report before flying out to Denver over the weekend, having a sit down conversation with tight end Fred Davis and the secondary.

Redskins Twitter (@Redskins) had its winter gloves compatible with smartphones on and was there to capture the words of the two-time Super Bowl winning coach.

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Coach’s Turn: Kyle Shanahan At The Mic

Posted by Stephen Czarda on October 24, 2013 – 3:24 pm

(AP Image)

(AP Image)

Breaking through the thick veil of scrutiny, Washington Redskins offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan was pleased with his offense’s performance last Sunday.

You’ve been following all the happenings from the local media week and have seen the impact it’s had on the morale in the locker room. Players are a little more outgoing during their interviews and are quick to mention that that’s the way the offense should look.

The whoopin’ was certainly enjoyable to watch but it’s time to move on—to the Denver Broncos.

The Bronco defense has underperformed this season giving up at least 20 points six times and ranks 30th in yards given up, but like the Redskins offense has the talent to breakout at any moment.

After fulfilling his suspension, two-time Pro Bowl linebacker Von Miller is back and ready to send another message to Robert Griffin III like he did when the two were foes in college.

While he be in top tier condition to stop a read-option attacking gelling though?

Hear Shanahan in his own words courtesy of the Redskins’ Twitter account (@Redskins):

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Throwback Thursday: Just 18 Plays

Posted by Stephen Czarda on October 24, 2013 – 2:05 pm

(AP Image)

(AP Image)

Throwback Thursday is one of my personal favorites of the week partially because I get to listen to 80’s music and not look like a weirdo, but also because it’s the perfect time to pluck a moment in Redskins history and relieve it here on the blog.

From a historical standpoint, when the Redskins and Broncos meet it’s nothing more than a regular season matchup between unfamiliar foes. Games don’t have the same aura around them like Redskins-Cowboys or Redskins-Giants. But, when you murmur the words ‘Redskins’ and ‘Broncos’ in the same sentence, you can’t help but crack a giant smile.

Super Bowl XXII defined one of the greatest runs in NFL history. Down 10-0 at the end of the first quarter to a team led by NFL MVP John Elway, the majority that picked the heavily favored Broncos were rejoicing.

Then during an 18-play span, a blizzard of epic proportions even for January opened up. Touchdown after touchdown, the Redskins offense berated the Broncos defense. Just like that a Lombardi Trophy that was destined for Denver rerouted to our Nation’s Capital.

Here is a YouTube video commemorating the greatest quarter in Super Bowl history:

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Thursday Practice Snapshots

Posted by Gabe Hiatt on October 24, 2013 – 1:42 pm

Roy Helu Jr. catches on the run (Gabe Hiatt)

Roy Helu Jr. catches on the run (Gabe Hiatt)

The hoodies, sweats and tights were out at Redskins Park as the players drilled under partly cloudy skies on a frigid day. Here are your Thursday Practice Snapshots.

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The Game Has Changed, So Have We

Posted by Redskins.com on October 24, 2013 – 1:00 pm

660x350 V2-KU Military Family 10-1-13

The Washington Redskins and Kaplan University have been game-changers since they began more than 75 years ago.  Washington perfected an unstoppable aerial assault known as the forward pass.  Kaplan University continues to find new ways to make higher education possible for a wide variety of students to pave the way to better job opportunities.

Now these two innovators have teamed up to offer something new to support military families and honor our servicemembers.

KaplanThe Kaplan University–Washington Redskins Military Family Scholarship will award one full scholarship and up to 30 partial scholarships covering more than half of tuition costs to spouses and dependent children of our men and women actively serving in the U.S. military (on active duty, or in the National Guard and Reserves).

You only have two days left to earn money for your higher education. Application enrollment ends this Saturday, Oct. 26, at 11:59 p.m. CT.

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Coach’s Turn: Jim Haslett At The Mic

Posted by Stephen Czarda on October 24, 2013 – 12:23 pm

(AP Image)

(AP Image)

Under the microscope, the defense has seen incremental improvement over the last few weeks. That’s not to say they’re where they want to be—not even close—but there has been progression.

While the box score will forever show 41 points given up on Sunday, 14 of those came between a punt returned for touchdown and a drive that started with 1st-and-goal after a Robert Griffin III interception.

Most media questions this week have surrounded Brandon Meriweather, but looking beyond the safety, the defense faces a dubious task in stopping MVP frontrunner Peyton Manning.

With 25 touchdowns to only three interceptions, Manning’s 2013 season is on pace to shatter several longstanding NFL records. With a bevy of weapons to include Wes Welker and the rising Julius Thomas, defenses are not only outmanned, but often dumbfounded by Manning’s at the line audibles. If he sees overcommitment from the defense, he switches to a running play where former first round pick Knowshon Moreno has eight rushing touchdowns.

Anyway, taking a quick breather from nonstop preparation, defensive coordinator Jim Haslett talked with the media about plans for Sunday.

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Redskins Scoring History Vs. Broncos

Posted by Stephen Czarda on October 24, 2013 – 11:00 am

(AP Image)

(AP Image)

An offense rounding into form vs. a defense that is struggling.  The league’s No. 1 offense vs. a defense giving up over 30 points a game.

Above is pretty much the tale of Sunday’s showdown–well and special teams, but hopefully that’s  a non-story after a good performance.

With Robert Griffin III showing off again, the read-option stronger than ever with the addition of Roy Helu Jr. who was barely a part of it last season after his shut down and Jordan Reed’s quick transcendence forcing defenses to be honest with him and top target Pierre Garcon, the incomplete performances from the first two weeks seem to be out of the system like a bad piece of meat.

But is this weekend the classic ‘any given Sunday’ in the sense that maybe, just maybe, the Broncos offense won’t output at a record pace?

Well—as Santana Moss always says during media sessions—who knows. He’s right. No one knows what’s going to happen from one play to the next, but if the offense’s hand is forced to play shootout with the Broncos then they will.

Anyway, this week’s featured Redskins.com poll is asking you how many points YOU think the Redskins will score in the thin air of Denver this weekend.

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Week 8 Redskins Fantasy Roundup

Posted by Stephen Czarda on October 24, 2013 – 9:49 am

(AP Image)

(AP Image)

If you were one to start one of the Washington Redskins last week then you’re probably still smiling from ear to ear and feeling pretty optimistic right now.

Waiting for a collective explosion, you got it in the form of five offensive touchdowns. Now before I get too ahead of myself, I’m not sure how many of you had Roy Helu Jr. on your team, let alone had him in your starting lineup, but before you fear that Shanahanigans is back or we have a classic touchdown vulture, Morris is still projected as a top-10 running back this week.

Factor in Denver’s porous defensive performance this season (30th in yards given up) with a highly confident offense that appears to be back in its groove and we have a concoction for points galore on Sunday.

Check out this week’s fantasy football projected point total/rankings and of course tip your hat to me for doing all of this below.

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The Mile High Effect

Posted by Gabe Hiatt on October 24, 2013 – 7:00 am

(AP)

(AP)

For a minute Wednesday, Mike Shanahan let on that Denver’s vaunted home field advantage might have been a psychology experiment, a malignant placebo visitors swallowed upon their arrival.

Then he laughed.

“Oh, we just made that up a long time ago, there’s nothing to it,” Shanahan said, smiling and drawing laughs when the media asked the former coach of the Broncos about the altitude advantage.

“No, there is something to it, there’s no question. If … you haven’t been working in that environment, it does take you a while to get used to it. That’s why a lot of Olympians have trained in that area just for a conditioning standpoint. It is a little bit different. You try to go in as late as you can, and over the years they feel that is the best way to do it.”

Yes, the altitude in the Mile High city takes some getting used to. The coach saw it first hand.

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