If you do what you've always done you will be what you've always been
Beginning today Curly R will bring you daily roundups of camp activity, if there is something I missed, drop it in comments or shoot me a note.
Sunday 26 July 2009 | forty-nine days until kickoff
T-minus three days, Jason Reid introduces himself formally as the new head writer of Redskins Insider, the logo had been blank reflecting the Washington Post's strategy ever since Jason La Canfora left for greener pastures with the NFL (Network). Jason LaCa has been the most linked traditional media writer over the first three years of Curly R, Jason Reid will no become that guy.
Monday 27 July 2009 | forty-eight days until kickoff
There was some prep for camp, t-minus two days, Matt Terl over at the ORB (Official Redskins Blog) picked up a story from IGN.com, they simulated the entire 2009 NFL season with Madden NFL 10, in this simulation the Redskins went 13-3, clinching home field through the playoffs. I guess this goes to show Madden 10 favors defense over offense. Welcome also to Rick Maease, the new junior Redskins beat writer at the WaPo.
Jason Reid sat down, or rather had a telecon with, shadow general manager Vinny Cerrato. The tone of this interview is set thusly:
Occasionally, Cerrato has expressed anger about things I've reported.
I am not sure if this is accurate or understatement, I think it is safe to say that Vinny hated Jason La Canfora's guts. More gloss-over of Jason Campbell's offseason treatment, and Vinny has higher expectation of the offense because of it for to have been now in two years consecutively. Jason also wonders aloud inasmuch as the written word is loud what this season means for Vinny himself, he has been untouchable the past ten years except for when Marty Schottenheimer fired Vinny immediately upon taking the head coach and general manager job in 2001, the verdict may not yet be in on Vinny's 2008 draft class but so far it looks pretty bad, after this season owner Dan Snyder will have two full seasons of Vinny's performance as shadow general manager to evaluate, if all the footbalrati can whisper about Jim Zorn getting the can for underperforming in two seasons, why could not Vinny be held to the same standard? Answer: because Vinny is a survivor.
Jim Zorn is ready to go.
Tuesday 28 July 2009 | forty-seven days until kickoff
T-minus one day, second year head coach Jim Zorn sat down with Matt and Gary Fitzgerald of Redskins.com, yes the Redskins have two separate media operations in coopetition for an interview. Key takeaways: I think we will see pressure put on second year receivers Devin Thomas and Malcolm Kelly and second year tight end Fred Davis, I keep reading their names and how ready they are, coach Zorn drops all three names in the second sentence of the interview. Coach Zorn also articulated an interesting philosophy of player development:
Starting in preseason, our formula is to elevate the team from the backup positions on, and then moving forward get our starters--our mainstays--to elevate their game as well.
I agree, true depth and true player development are two things missing in many NFL franchises, it is a smart strategy, problem is you need developable players. Coach Zorn was also effusive about Jason Campbell and feels plenty comfortable calling plays as part of his head coaching duties. It is a good interview.
Jason Campbell will not be shy in asserting himself this season, or at least that is the meme, even though Jason had his best year in 2008 you still cannot spell asserting without ass and Ting (Tings).
Every one of the Redskins projected starting offensive linemen, oddly except center Casey Rabach, lost weight this offseason. In 2009 offensive line coach Joe Bugel is going for lean and strong with his new age Hogs. Except for right tackle Mile Williams that is, he may have lost 68 pounds to get down to 342, there is no definition of lean that includes Mike.
Supplemental rookie defensive end Jeremy Jarmon signed his contract, only Brian Orakpo is left unsigned among Redskins rookies.
Davis Elfin at the Washington Times reports that Sean Taylor's murder and the sadness of the aftermath made it easy to leave the team after the season. Not exactly a newsflash to anyone paying attention at the time in 2007, still interesting to hear it straight from coach Gibbs. Coach Gibbs also thinks the Redskins did nothing wrong in the way they handled Jason Campbell in the offseason, that if no vote of confidence and two attempts to replace Jason were at all concerning to Jason that he is in the wrong job. Whereas I appreciate the cowboy up and deal sentiment, coach Gibbs was not exactly a strongman in his second tour with the team and if Jason is not allowed to wonder after this offseason that sure seems to make Jay Cutler
Wednesday 29 July 2009 | forty-six days until kickoff
On zero day it was time for players to arrive, check in, for the worker bees to get the facility and the equipment ready and to get in mental shape for the 40 days to come before the 2009 regular season.
The Redskins have a big camp roster, without linebacker Brian Orakpo though it is not full. Matt Terl ran a great piece on the Redskins conditioning test, after reading it makes more sense why so many players fail it.
Coach Zorn, right tackle Mike Williams, rookie defensive end Jeremy Jarmon, second year safety Chris Horton and linebacker Rocky McIntosh all had press conferences. Highlights:
Coach Zorn: unsigned linebacker Brian Orakpo needs to get into camp; not a single major injury coming into camp (ed. note: so nice to have Shawn Springs gone. - Ben); second year receivers Malcolm Kelly and Devin Thomas and tight end Fred Davis, again; no pre-camp favorite for number two quarterback between Colt Brennan and Todd Collins.
Rocky McIntosh: admitted more than one of Jim Zorn's pregame speeches were not motiviational (rowr!).
The Washington Post also had a good profile piece on new defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth, he hopes he has found a place to fit in and stay a while. Excuse me while I throw up a little in my mouth reading about a giant of a man, wealthy for life, coddled as an adult that now feels sheepish about driving recklessly and hurting people, can barely control his rage and considers himself an outsider despite being the most coveted player in the game this year. Mike Wise at the WaPo also had a good piece on Jon Jansen, he is still coming to grips with his release from the Redskins in May. Here's to Jon Jansen, the love he wanted from the team is so rarely actually afforded to players on their own terms, think the humiliation of Art Monk and Brian Mitchell versus the celebration of Darrell Green, the fans Jon, we will always remember. Thank you again for ten solid years with the Washington Redskins.
Tomorrow is day one of camp, the jerseys come on and the players hit the field.
Jim Zorn speaking to reporters: uncredited image from here.