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Redskins Insider: November 1, 2009 - November 7, 2009

Kelly struggles to fit in this offense

After seven games, second-year wide receiver Malcolm Kelly has seven catches for 73 yards with no touchdowns. He was demoted to second string after Washington's fifth game and has no receptions in the last two games. This wasn't the type of season Kelly envisioned after he worked hard in rehabilitation...

By Cindy Boren  |  November 7, 2009; 2:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (77)
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Alexander stresses special teams' need to improve

Despite Washington's poor production on punt returns and Coach Jim Zorn's comments earlier in the week about his intention to shake up the returner lineup, slot receiver Antwaan Randle El has retained his role as the primary returner for Sunday's game against the Atlanta Falcons, Zorn said. Randle El will...

By Jason Reid  |  November 7, 2009; 12:58 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
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2 dudes, 4 quarters and the Gameday preview

For the Falcons' offense, the tight end is key, according to Doug Farrar of Football Outsiders in Gameday....

By Cindy Boren  |  November 7, 2009; 11:45 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (8)
 
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Zorn has high praise for Ryan

Apparently, Coach Jim Zorn thinks highly of Atlanta Falcons second-year quarterback Matt Ryan. "I think he's playing with confidence for a young guy. He really has a great feel for anticipating throws. His efficiency is outstanding," Zorn said today at Redskins Park. "You can really see his competitiveness. He is very competitive and very...

By Jason Reid  |  November 6, 2009; 5:08 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (72)
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Paulescu to get his kicks

On Wednesday, Sam Paulescu was punting at a high school field in Denver. On Sunday, he will be the fourth punter used by the Redskins in eight games this season, joining starter Hunter Smith, mid-game replacement Shaun Suisham (the normal place kicker) and mid-week replacement Glenn Pakulak. "Let me put...

By Barry Svrluga  |  November 6, 2009; 3:02 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (57)
 
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Play-calling by committee

New play-caller Sherman Lewis will direct the offense for the second time Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome -- with some help. Offensive coordinator Sherman Smith still will handle most of the running game, and Zorn plans to stay in the mix as well. And then there's...

By Jason Reid  |  November 6, 2009; 1:58 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (60)
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Blades might play Sunday against Falcons

Less than two weeks after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery, reserve linebacker H.B. Blades might play Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome, Coach Jim Zorn said Friday. "The guy that has a chance to play but is questionable is H.B. Blades, which is amazing to me," Zorn said...

By Jason Reid  |  November 6, 2009; 1:35 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
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Daniels wins Ed Block Courage Award

Defensive end Phillip Daniels was named the winner of the team's 2009 Ed Block Courage Award, presented to a player from each team who displays courage amid adversity. The award is named after longtime Baltimore Colts trainer Ed Block and was first presented in 1978. Daniels, 36, suffered a season-ending...

By Jason Reid  |  November 6, 2009; 12:32 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (26)
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What Snyder can learn from Steinbrenner

As he rode the train yesterday from New York City, Tom Boswell got to thinking about the similarities between Daniel Snyder and Yankees owner George Steinbrenner. Steinbrenner didn't change so much as he grew. Pain and embarrassment were certainly catalysts. Perhaps age mellowed his mean streak, his pleasure in mortifying...

By Cindy Boren  |  November 6, 2009; 9:27 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (104)
 
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Campbell on Davis: 'We need him right now'

Tight end Fred Davis has prepared well in anticipation of his first career start Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome, quarterback Jason Campbell said. "Fred definitely has put in the work to get himself ready to go," Campbell said. "You can see he's focused and he knows...

By Jason Reid  |  November 6, 2009; 7:31 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (33)
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Roster moves loom; Horton 'tweaks' knee

Another day, another injury, another corresponding roster move on the horizon. And a new twist - a bit of uncertainty surrounding safety Chris Horton. First, the injury: punter Hunter Smith aggravated his lingering groin injury in practice Wednesday and will be inactive this week at Atlanta. Touted as one of...

By Rick Maese  |  November 5, 2009; 4:12 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (88)
 
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Smith re-injures groin; Paulescu to punt (updated)

Punter Hunter Smith has re-injured his groin and will not be available Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons. Sam Paulescu, a former Oregon State punter who was with Dallas as an undrafted free agent in 2007 and again last year, will replace him on the roster. The team held punter tryouts...

By Jason Reid and Rick Maese  |  November 5, 2009; 2:30 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (57)
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Defense still looks to help out with turnovers

Although the Redskins again are among the league leaders statistically on defense, they didn't produce enough big plays - interceptions and fumble recoveries - while going 2-5 and losing their last three games before the bye week. The defense must do more to help the offense, secondary coach Jerry Gray...

By Jason Reid  |  November 5, 2009; 2:08 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
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Blache speaks 'from the heart' in Snyder's defense

Prompted by John Riggins' most recent criticism of Redskins ownership, defensive coordinator Greg Blache broke his month-long media silence today to defend Daniel M. Snyder. The organization is making no official comment about Riggins' harsh words Wednesday night on Showtime's "Inside the NFL," but Blache spoke for nearly four minutes...

By Rick Maese  |  November 5, 2009; 1:15 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (191)
 
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Vote now on Game 8

poll by twiigs.com...

By Cindy Boren  |  November 5, 2009; 9:47 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (124)
 
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Thomas is maturing -- in his own fashion

In the 27-17 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles, Devin Thomas had his first career touchdown reception. When the bye week ended Monday,Thomas returned to practice sporting a new hairstyle, with bottled bleach creating a makeshift mohawk across the second-year receiver's dome. Santana Moss was asked whether Devin Thomas is maturing....

By Rick Maese  |  November 5, 2009; 6:38 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (80)
 
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Riggins keeps the pressure on

Hall of Fame running back John Riggins didn't let up when the topic of Redskins ownership and management came up on Showtime's "Inside The NFL" on Wednesday night. Dan Steinberg and Rick Maese have the details at DC SportsBog. "I am saying that I don't think that this franchise can...

By Cindy Boren  |  November 4, 2009; 10:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (49)
 
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Zorn says Randle El is primary punt returner

Coach Jim Zorn today contradicted comments he made the previous two days about the team's punt return situation, saying after practice "nothing has changed" and Antwaan Randle El would remain the team's primary returner. "Antwaan, I guess he got asked a couple of questions, and he came into my office...

By Jason Reid  |  November 4, 2009; 4:37 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (97)
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Cooley's progress to be determined Monday

Redskins tight end Chris Cooley will have a follow-up appointment to evaluate the broken bone in his right ankle next Monday, an appointment that could help determine exactly how much time he'll miss. Cooley, who broke the bone in the Oct. 26 loss to Philadelphia, will miss the first game...

By Barry Svrluga  |  November 4, 2009; 4:29 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (13)
 
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Haynesworth's primary concern is wins, not stats

Pro Bowl defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth is frustrated about the Redskins' disappointing 2-5 record, but he is pleased that his presence has helped to improve the play of his teammates. "I remember you asked me that question when I first signed, and I said me being here will help other...

By Jason Reid  |  November 4, 2009; 3:40 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (40)
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Portis: No need for Snyder to apologize

As far as running back Clinton Portis is concerned, owner Daniel Snyder didn't need to apologize to fans Tuesday. But maybe the players do. "It didn't take him to speak. We know we're a disappointment. I hear people [say], 'You just gotta hear it out of somebody else's mouth.' We...

By Rick Maese  |  November 4, 2009; 3:15 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (73)
 
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Campbell finds road games easier right now

If the bye week was exactly what this Redskins team needed last week, a road game might be the best way for the offense to begin this next stretch of the schedule. Or so says quarterback Jason Campbell. Speaking with reporters today, Campbell said at this point in the season,...

By Rick Maese  |  November 4, 2009; 1:22 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (127)
 
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Redskins QBs past, present stage a lively summit

With so much turmoil surrounding the Redskins, the stage was set for an awkward night of banter at "A Night of Quarterbacks," an event dreamed up and hosted by ESPN 980 Tuesday night in Arlington. Toss in the fact that one of the night's participants (Jurgensen, Sonny) has been consistently...

By Rick Maese  |  November 4, 2009; 9:13 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (144)
 
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Meidt gets an assist in play-calling system

I have to admit I was surprised by how smoothly the Redskins' new play-calling procedure seemed to run in the team's 27-17 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles. I expected at least a few glitches because new play-caller Sherman Lewis still was unfamiliar with the personnel and terminology after fewer than...

By Jason Reid  |  November 4, 2009; 7:04 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (45)
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Snyder: 'We've let everyone down'

Amid the change and turmoil that has surrounded the Redskins' season, one voice has been missing. While fans and critics have hurled shots at the team and management, owner Daniel Snyder has remained silent -- until today. "We've let everyone down, including ourselves, and we know that and we're just...

By Rick Maese  |  November 3, 2009; 3:37 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (193)
 
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Zorn speaks to shakeup on punt returns

Slot receiver/punt returner Antwaan Randle El is a hard worker who happens to be a nice guy who is well-liked by his teammates and coaches. And the respect in the organization for Randle El is among the main reasons Coach Jim Zorn addressed the shakeup in the punt return game...

By Jason Reid  |  November 3, 2009; 2:34 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (43)
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Davis takes crash course to get up to speed

With Pro Bowl tight end Chris Cooley sidelined at least a few weeks after leg surgery, second-year tight end Fred Davis moves to the top of the depth chart for Sunday's game against the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome. Davis showed encouraging signs after becoming a bigger part of...

By Jason Reid  |  November 3, 2009; 11:26 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (88)
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Hall makes emotional return to Atlanta

DeAngelo Hall spent the first four seasons of his NFL career in Atlanta with the Falcons, who selected him eighth overall in the 2004 NFL draft. He still owns a home in Atlanta, still spends time there in the offseason, still counts old Falcons teammates as some of his best...

By Barry Svrluga  |  November 3, 2009; 9:53 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (45)
 
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A helping hand from Haynesworth

Defensive coordinator Greg Blache has dismissed reporters who have asked whether defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth seems to have helped to make his teammates better. Blache acknowledges that Haynesworth does his job well, but says that he has no affect on anyone else's success on defense. It's hard to buy that...

By Jason Reid  |  November 3, 2009; 6:50 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (124)
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Holmgren 'bothered' by treatment of Zorn

Perhaps Mike Holmgren might not want to coach the Redskins after all. He sure didn't sound like a guy trying to impress owner Daniel Snyder when he blasted Washington management today for its treatment of Coach Jim Zorn, one of Holmgren's former assistants, during an interview with a Chicago radio...

By Jason Reid  |  November 2, 2009; 4:18 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (272)
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Blades, Westbrook to miss Atlanta game

Linebacker H.B. Blades and cornerback Byron Westbrook are expected to miss Sunday's game against the Atlanta Falcons after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery, Coach Jim Zorn said after practice today at Redskins Park. "They're both working. They're both trying to get back," Zorn said. "I don't believe they'll be ready this...

By Jason Reid  |  November 2, 2009; 3:15 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
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Redskins promote Hall, demote Randle El

The Redskins plan to make a major change on special teams for their upcoming game against the Atlanta Falcons, demoting punt returner Antwaan Randle El and elevating DeAngelo Hall to the primary role, a league source said today. Danny Smith, special teams coordinator, will focus this week on helping Hall...

By Jason Reid  |  November 2, 2009; 2:55 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (103)
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All but three present for practice (updated)

All except for Chris Cooley, H.B. Blades and Byron Westbrook were present when the first practice after the bye week began at 1 p.m., according to tweets by Rick Maese. All three were casualties of the Monday night loss to the Philadelphia Eagles. Cooley broke a bone in his lower...

By Cindy Boren  |  November 2, 2009; 1:27 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (82)
 
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Redskins sign Eddie Williams to active roster

The Redskins have signed fullback Eddie Williams, their seventh-round (221st overall) draft choice in April, to the active roster, and added tackle Clint Oldenburg to the practice squad. Oldenburg, a free agent, was a fifth-round draft pick by the New England Patriots in 2007. He also has played for the...

By Jason Reid  |  November 2, 2009; 11:02 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (135)
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Thomas, Kelly lay it on the line

After the 27-17 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles, second-year wide receiver Devin Thomas spoke out, essentially saying the Redskins' offense could not succeed because of the line's poor pass protection. Second-year wide receiver Malcolm Kelly recently expressed concern for quarterback Jason Campbell, saying he shouldn't shoulder the blame for the...

By Jason Reid  |  November 2, 2009; 10:40 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (32)
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Monday morning, after the bye

It's time to say goodbye to the bye week and hello to the rest of the season, with just over half of the games on the Redskins' schedule still remaining to be played. Things are just beginning to get interesting in the NFC East, with the Giants plummeting like a...

By Jason Reid  |  November 2, 2009; 7:07 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (123)
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Rabach: the man in the middle

The list of players who have rotated in and out of the offensive line around Washington Redskins center Casey Rabach has continued to grow longer this season - a constantly updating reminder of the lack of consistency for a unit that has struggled mightily over the past two seasons. Randy...

By Paul Tenorio  |  November 1, 2009; 2:57 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (79)
 
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