On the Field for Practice – 12/19

A rainy, rainy Friday practice, although at least this time the weather forecast says that practicing in the rain might help prepare for Sunday’s conditions.


  • As usual with Friday practices, it was mostly special teams and red zone stuff today. The pass catchers started off a bit rocky with a bunch of drops, probably because of the rain-soaked footballs, but as the practice continued things seemed to settle down, and by the end people were hauling it in consistently. Antwaan Randle El made the most remarkable catch that I saw today, a jumping, spinning thing to grab a pass that was coming over the wrong shoulder, and then a tiptoe to stay in bounds.
  • The quarterbacks, on the other hand, started fairly well despite the wet ball and continued solidly throughout. Jason Campbell seemed to be putting a little more velocity on the ball than I’m used to seeing, which let him slide a few passes past linebackers, and Todd Collins and Colt Brennan both looked solid in their drills. Brennan, on one occasion, overthrew his receiver in the middle of the end zone and drilled the center of the goalpost. I don’t think it would’ve counted in their game, but it’s not something I’ve seen all that often, either.


  • Coach Zorn seemed upbeat during practice, although I didn’t make it out early enough to see if he participated in his usual Friday throwing drill even in the downpour. The speculation that his relationship with the team has been damaged appears, at least to my eye, to be off-base. If anything, he seems to be interacting with the guys on the practice field more than ever.


  • The injury story continues to be good, mostly. Kedric Golston was limited, and Jon Jansen did not practice and is doubtful for Sunday’s game. The most interesting absence, at least initially, was Clinton Portis, but Coach Zorn downplayed it afterward. “When he woke up today he had a kink, and he is just working out the kinks,” he said, chuckling. I saw Portis walking around the facility after practice, and he looks fine.


  • As I mentioned yesterday, Ryan Boschetti is a lively, lively practice player, and he and Casey Rabach seem to enjoy sparring on the practice field. “Ask who owned — and I mean owned 73 today,” Rabach told me afterward. “This guy.”

    “I was kind to him today, and only laid him out three times. Six, seven, at least I could’ve gotten.”

    “They should change the name on my jersey to Flatback,” Boschetti added.

    “Because that’s all I do is flatback him,” Rabach said. “All the time. That’s all I do.”

    “No, no,” Boschetti clarified, “he is Flatback. He is the one lying down, looking up at me.” He paused. “No, he’s a professional out there, a pleasure to watch.”

    “That’s because I thrive off of 73,” Rabach said. “73 is out there whooping and hollerin’, and when I knock him out, I just get happy.”

    “When I yell, he yells louder,” Boschetti said, trying to reach some sort of conclusion to the debate, “when I hit, he hits me harder. He makes me a better player.”

    Jon Jansen said something to Boschetti that I couldn’t hear, and Boschetti responded, “If there’s one player on the team that I look up to, it’s Jon Jansen.”

    “That’s because you’re so freakin’ short,” Jansen said.

    Yes, I think it’s worth continuing to watch the Boschetti/O-line battle during the remaining practices.



38 Responses

  1. Now the last 2 days of practice you pick on brennan why is this.

    Matt youre telling me that JC and TC don’t have bad plays

  2. Matt
    how are players responding to Zorn and do you feel that the team is not buying him being a coach for at least next year

  3. Thanks Matt. Keep up the good work. You’re always going to be receiving questions and scrutiny, so just get used to it and keep doing what you’re doing!

  4. Travis,

    I don’t think it was Matt’s intention to pick on Colt! That’s something you don’t see everyday, it’s worth mentioning it in a light-hearted way!!

    I would be willing to bet, Colt had a smile on his face after it happened!!!

  5. Again, this is what the Redskins should do this off season. Holmgren is leaving Seattle so Zorn should convince Gil Haskell the Asst. Head Coach / Offensive Coordinator of Seattle to come to D. C.. He been with Holmgren in Seattle since 2000. He should also bring Jim Lind Tight Ends Coach in Seatle too. Jim has been with Holgren since 1999. That is experience Zorn could use to help develope his offense, and get it out of the hole it is in. They need a Linebacker coach that can develope, and spot young LBs. We can try to pull Keith Butler from Dick LeBeau’s Steeler D. He been with them for 8 years; so he know great Linebacker play. Maybe just maybe he can teach us some of LeBeau LB blitzing techniques. Snab Jim Washburn from the Defensive Line Coach from the Titans, because the Titans always develope good D-Linemen out of college. O and try to bring Albert Haynesworth with him. Haynesworth will be a free agent after the season. Monte Kiffin is leaving Tampa Bay so grap one of the members of his staff Defensiveback Coach under Kiffin for 6 experience. Maybe he can teach Carlos how to catch a pick or two in a game. There you go the Redskins plan for this off season.

  6. I saw the USC coach on ABC saturday night a month ago talking about how USC practices full speed hitting and everything and that’s why they are always so good and above the level of competition. How do other NFL teams practice? Do you know Matt? And also Colt shouldn’t have a smile after missing a touchdown pass… are you kidding?? What would all the Colt lovers do if he does get into one of the last games and he fumbles or throws an INT?? Even if we lose to the Eagles I highly doubt they would put him in against the 49ers unless they want to protect Campbell from injury.

  7. And last week colt missed some throws your telling me JC and Tc are perfect throwers

  8. I don’t know if I can take watching another game this week if the offense is as bad as its been. I might have my wife make me a list of crummy jobs to save me the frustration of seeing a one TD performance again. Maybe JZ should suit up and throw the D@MN ball to someone down field.

  9. Dennis…ditto to that my brother!

  10. What a shame, season in the drain.
    Won’t play Colt, not even in the last games
    Where nothing counts anyway, but Zorn can’t chance it
    Because if Colt throws for touchdowns, Skins Nation will riot

  11. zizo: Like I said, things looked fine to me at practice today and yesterday. The real test will be on Sunday, so we’ll see. At the very least, everyone is saying the right things this week and looking friendly in public.

    Travis Evans: Everyone misses throws every day; what I write depends on what I see that’s particularly interesting.

    (And, just for the record, as recently as Wednesday’s practice update, I wrote about how Jason Campbell would’ve gotten Moss killed across the middle with his throw, while Colt threw a gorgeous completion to someone or another. I don’t think I mentioned him at all yesterday, unless I’m missing something.)

  12. Savant, you got a pretty good sounding plan.

  13. Matt, youre doing a great job.

  14. whats up with kelly is his knee alright yet. Yea he has played but i havent seen him do anything that would let me beleive that he is ready. with that said who should get the last roster spot sunday kelly or davis and i think davis

  15. Both Kelly AND Davis should be starting these last two weeks. If anything, I would bench James Thrash OR Yoder for these last two games.

    We REALLY, REALLY need to start developing our rookies man. Thomas, Kelly and Davis needs to start performing like YESTERDAY! We spent THREE second round picks on getting these weapons, but they have 142 COMBINED receiving yards, and Devin Thomas has 53 rushing yards for this season.

    I am tired of pointing the finger at Campbell, Zorn or any ONE PLAYER. EVERYONE on this team needs to step it up and it has to start NOW!

  16. I was watching various highlights from games when had some success and it just seems that something is missing. The capability to be a competitive team is there. However, the Redskins team seems deflated lately and it just seems that they have no drive. The team has no intensity, no drive, no urgency. I am not sure how Zorn preps these guys mentally during practice, but it seems that what ever they are doing is not working.

    I think Zorn and his coaching staff need to find a way to get back the urgency, emotion, and intensity this team needs.

  17. I like your plan savant.
    You might want to add drafting a couple of new young offensive linemen.

  18. Keep up the good work Matt, love the blog. The only
    exception is when you report on how Jason Campbell
    threw the ball that day, using words like, “more velocity
    on this throws” you make him sound like he will
    be having a good game on Sunday. Practice don’t
    mean much, if the work does not translate to
    the field.

  19. If Zorn does let Colt play in the last two games & does anywhere decent, Zorn will look like the fool, that’s why he can’t take a chance to play Colt. Continue to let JC finish the season & let him fry himself.

  20. To Savant,

    Your suggestions on who to proceed during the offseason are excellent in theory however, plucking all of those Offensive/Defensive Coordinators from their respective teams will require the Skinz to put up a King’s ransom and I don’t believe their teams will let them go that easily. One plan the Redskins Front Office should consider is asking Holmgren to join the Redskins and serve as a President or under another capacity within the Front Office.

    Rookie Class:
    There is too much emphasis on what the west coast offense should or shouldn’t look like……at this point since the Redskins are out of the playoffs, play the rookies regardless of whether they have a grasp of the offense or not. Draw the freakin plays on the grass or call them out from the huddle if you must. This is the only way you can judge talent and athleticism.

    And finally, I’ve been a big supporter of Jason Campbell (JC) since he was drafted. Regardless of how good/bad our offensive line is, JC should be able to make at least two or three plays scrambling or improvising. It’s as if though JC was infected with the Brunnel dink and dunk syndrome. For crying out loud even Brunnel had his moments with Santana under Gibbs’ pedestrian offense.

    Offseason Priorities:
    Get Albert Haynesworth
    Clean out house and get rid of Jon Jensen.
    Sign DeAngelo Hall to a long-term contract cuz he can actually catch freebie INTs.
    Keep Marcus Washington (As a backup role) – He’s proven to be too unreliable the past 2-3 seasons.
    Draft an OL in the 1st round or sign a top flight free agent – Unless Morocco Brown can spot a yound Free Agent talent (i.e Casey Rabach).
    Draft LBs and sign a veteran LB as well.

    Matt, great blog…..I’d like to find out what you think of my insight since you’re around the team on a daily basis.

  21. The Fiery Ryan Boschetti is good for the team.

    Matt I think you have been very fair when writing about the QB’s.

  22. Well whatever the reason Brennan won’t start.

    Zorn will be here next year.

    Blache will be here next year.

    And we will see the same sucess.

    The season is over why not evalute the future please someone explain.

    As for Brennan riot if he did good I don’t think so. The fans would be happy that JC is out and that Brennan is the future.

    When or if brennan starts the fans will be diaspointed.

    If Moss stays in and Randel el you will see Brennan get frustrated.

    In the preseason sucess he threw to tall big wrs in college he had medium threats but he had 5 or 6 of them so they couldn’t key in.

    They will key in on Moss this = No sucess.

    Put Moss and and Randel in the slots run 4 wide with Kelly and Devinon the outside and Cooley in somtimes and sneak a seam route in.

    This will make us look like a real offense.

  23. Travis Evans,

    You HAVE TO HAVE an O-line to run a 4 wide out set!!

    I hope Vinny finds an old silk hat soon!!! He needs to pull off a magic trick this off season!!!

  24. I have to agree with Ronnie we do need to do alot of work this offseason.

    See in my opinion I think these are our opinions:

    Get Holmgram in the front office do what the Dolphins did.

    I would say get Kiffman to but rumor here in FL is that he is going to go coach his sons school.

    Get Rid of the following players:
    Starting on Offense…….
    *Ladell Betts (scared and injury prone now)
    *Todd Yoder (isnt that affective on important drives)
    *Jon Jansen (old, slow, soft, need I say more)
    *Chris Samuels (injury prone big time, getting old, get knocked down by young player and beat also)
    *James Thrash (two words “NO PRODUCTIVITY”)

    On the limb players in Offense:
    *Jason Campbell (isn’t the QB we thought he would be alittle scared to step it up)
    *Santana Moss (has gotten slower alot slower and drops key passes in games)
    *Antwann Randle El (if he isn’t changed from PR he needs to go and on offense I have not seen much coming from him)
    *O-line (we play the lowest rank Ds in the league and get beat all the time)

    Now for Deffense…..
    Guys who should go:
    *Jason Taylor (offseason Fluke)
    *Andre Carter (he’s getting old and has lost his speed)
    *Rocky McInosh (doesn’t have the mentality of being a strong side guy, he’s alittle bit slower than most TEs)
    *Marcus Washington (injury prone big time even when he is fully 100% good he still plays bad)
    *H.B. Blades (isn’t who we thought he was lets way too many things get away)
    *Shawn Springs (injury prone and stupid mistakes remember the Giants game D. Hall had the pick and the idiot runs and tries to grab it)

    On the Limb on Deffense:
    *Carlos Rogers (lets plays get by him especially on important drives and the biggest problem to many droped ints)
    *Fred Smoot (has lost his caliber and gets beat alot also)

    Now for the people we should get on the offseason are:
    Albert Haynesworth
    Plaxico Burress
    Rookie Outside LB
    Rookie Offenive T, G and center
    2 Rookie DEs

    As for coaches:
    Cowher to be in front office
    Holgram as O cordinator

    Point Blank: It will be a busy offseason if Daniel and Vinny take there head out the clouds because if they dont get it together this team will see no success in upcoming years! Lets hope something happens this offseason

  25. Lol Danny you just can’t do that. 1 Carlos Rogers is a pro bowl talent. just because he doesn’t have the sexy plays, doesn’t mean he sucks and we should drop him. Picks don’t determine if a corner is playing well or not. (I played DB in college its the position I know the best) Same goes for Smoot. I will agree Smoot has been burned, but on most of the plays he was burned on, were just great throws. The guys numbers will suffer from bad luck. H.B is a solid back up. Rocky I would only trade if we got good value for him 1st or 2nd round pick. Carter will improve with help on the line. Moss would be a nightmare to cover if he had any help at WR. ARE should be playing in the slot. Samuels has been playing on one leg all year, but yeah outside of that I agree with you. Except about playing the lowest rank D’s in the league. If you think that i really don’t know what games your watching. The season was longer than last week. Philly, Dallas, Giants, Pitt, Balt, and this feels weird saying this but Arizona’s defense doesn’t suck. Forget Kiffin and his cover 2. Blache is the real deal. I’ve said this earlier this team runs every scheme well. Most teams just run a base D and mix in some others. Like Oakland plays man Indy runs a cover 2 that’s what they do. This team runs schemes depending on the opponent.

  26. Espn needs to say Carlos Rogers is good so everyone will start thinking it.

  27. A CB having no interceptions in a game gives no clues in whether he played a good or bad game. Interceptions also have a lot to do with luck and situation. It really doesn’t show the skill of a secondary back. Additionally, interceptions are rare and normalizing the statistic to per game would not solve the problem. Interceptions are a worse stat than sacks for a defensive back (DB) because interceptions can only occur if a pass is directed at his coverage area, whereas a DB or a defensive tackle rushes the quarterback a majority of the game.

    If you want to read more I’ll put the site on the bottom. I don’t know where Carlos stands in two of the metrics but in Passes Defended Efficiency he’s top 4.


  28. Saying moss is getting a lot slower is stupid the man is fast and even with jason campbell moss is going to have another 1,000 yard season if you look at the stats closely Santana and Steve Smith are the same player the Skins just need to let Thomas play over Antawn ,who was a waste of 31 million, so he can develop and give us a respectable receiving core the only solid receiver we have is Santana

  29. Redskins offseason wishlist

    1. A GM or experienced President. We missed the boat on Parcells, but it would be great to bring in a Holmgren or Cowher in this capacity. It would be great to get Cowher in here. Holmgren would be nice, but I’d rather see the Z man develop his own office, then just run Holmgren’s.

    2. Clean house. Renegotiate aging players contracts or get rid of them. I love Springs and Washington, but we can’t pay them that kind of money for what we’ve gotten out of them recently.

    3. D-Line. Sign Haynesworth. He’s 27 and a beast. This would give us a great rotation at defensive tackle. Draft a defensive end and throw him into the fire. Let him start or at least split time with one of our vets.

    4. O-Line. Get younger here. We have to look at everything. Maybe see what we could get for Samuels.

    5. Linebacker. We’re getting old here too. I wouldnt mind seeing a first round pick here with all the talent in this draft.

  30. Ronnie, I would love to have Holmgren at that role, BUT he promised his wife that he would take the year off. Do my plan for the next season, and then 2010 bring in Holmgren like Parcells. All of Holmgren people will be in place will help convince him to join the team. As for this comment from you, “Your suggestions on who to proceed during the offseason are excellent in theory however, plucking all of those Offensive/Defensive Coordinators from their respective teams will require the Skinz to put up a King’s ransom and I don’t believe their teams will let them go that easily.”. Pitts., and Tampa are not paying their assistant coaches that much because they can not afford too. Holmgren’s crew will be looking for a job next season; new HC in Seattle next season. Mr. Dan will shell out the money. There is no salary cap on the coaching staff.
    An this comment, “Keep Marcus Washington (As a backup role) – He’s proven to be too unreliable the past 2-3 seasons.”. Then why keep him?
    I like your plan too Brian.

  31. WE NEED Rey Mauluga from USC to replace marcus washington
    REY IS TOO GOOD TO PASS UP (he plays like a Hawiian Brian Urlacher or Ray Lewis)
    Dan and Vinny you cant pass this dude up

    snyder try to get Albert Hayneswoth

    when samuels is heathy he is an elite blocker
    we need a right tackle through free agency
    kendall rabach thomas should be good together one more year then we can draft for the o line in 2010

    Oh and one more thing get Jason Campbell the f@#ck out of DC
    face it JASON CAMPBELL was a bust
    Colt Brennan Time!

  32. True that! COLT BRENNAN TIME!

  33. Cowboys just lost. Skins stil have a pulse.

  34. Colt is the future of the Redskins. A playmaker, leader, accurate passer, quick footwork, quick reads & understands the West Coast offense. He’s the type of player that will get everyone excited to play, fans & players & how can you go wrong with that ingredients. If you want to be a winner, you can’t be afraid to lose & that’s Brennan in a nutshell. Go Redskins.

  35. Upset against Phili !!!!!!!!!! I had a dream that clinton rushed for 136 yards and ran in two touchdown. JC threw for 250 yards and two touchdowns and the skins broke the 29 point mark.

    I am usually right when I dream about this things, then again it might just be a dream.

    GO SKINS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  36. IN the nfl you cant take out starter and put in the 3rd QB.jc HAS NO EMOTION OR INTENSITY OR SPARK TO WIN.BUT HE WOULD BE A OK BACK UP.

  37. Yea guys it’s over we have to overcome the falcons and bears and philli plus a saints team so yea it’s over.

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