You and your glorious man scuff made Redskins Nation have Chris Bliss Mr. Neild.
In honor of the bearded West Virginia alum’s 26th birthday, here’s an article posted in 2011 shortly after nose tackle Chris Neild made some serious noise with 1.5 sacks on only eight snaps against the New York Giants.
Here’s to also hoping Eli Manning has some serious déjà vu tonight and some whiskers hang low in his face as Neild stands over him.
By Christopher Mudd:
Rookie nose tackle Chris Neild doesn’t want to dwell on his opening day success.
It was one game, after all.
“Overall, this has been a growing process day by day, and I’m just taking it all in stride,” he said.
In the Redskins’ 28-14 win over the New York Giants last Sunday, Neild played in his first NFL regular season and put together an impressive stat line: four tackles, 1.5 sacks and a forced fumble.
More impressive is that Neild’s 1.5 sacks marked the first time a Redskins rookie had opened with multiple sacks since sacks became an official statistic in 1982.
Both of his sacks came against Eli Manning in the second half of Sunday’s 28-14 win over the New York Giants.
“Any time a guy gets 1.5 sacks, I don’t think you are expecting that the first game of his rookie season, especially for a nose tackle,” head coach Mike Shanahan said. “So it’s a little bit of a surprise for a guy to have two sacks. But Chris has that type of mindset.
“He’s a worker. He does an excellent job at the nose tackle position, especially coming in as a young guy. I like the way he handles himself. He’s a worker, very accountable and he played accordingly.”
Neild was the second-to-last pick — 253rd overall — in last April’s NFL Draft. He may have surprised some people with his sacks, and he surprised himself a little bit, too.
“In college last year [at West Virginia]. I had three sacks the whole season, the year before that I had none,” Neild said. “So I didn’t expect that at all, I just went out there and tried to do my job.”
Linebacker Brian Orakpo praised Neild for his performance on defense.
“He had a phenomenal game,” Orakpo said. “Who would have ever thought — he had two sacks? Rookies coming in and making plays, that’s what we need — guys with hungry attitudes.”
Looking back on the game, Neild said everything was a blur, including the sacks.
“I can’t really explain the feeling,” he said. “It’s loud out there and you’re kind of thinking, ‘Wow, I just got a sack.’”
Neild is part of a rookie class that missed out on OTAs and got a late start to training camp due to a lockout-shortened offseason. He believes his play will continue to improve, but at a gradual pace.
Also in honor of your big day Chris, here’s some Stevie Wonder Happy Birthday magic to pump through those over-sized headphones of yours:
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