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Fletcher's first Pro Bowl is a hit

For the Redskins, the final image of the season - at least the final image with a football field as the backdrop - was a pretty nice one: London Fletcher, only 5-foot-10, sporting a smile big enough to swallow an O-lineman.

A lot of players opted out of the Pro Bowl, moved up to the week before the Super Bowl and to south Florida, for one reason or another. And even among those who were on the sidelines Sunday, there might not have been anyone who appreciated his spot in the game more than Fletcher. And you could see it on the field. While many played with a noticeably lower energy level, Fletcher looked like he was trying to cram a decade of Pro Bowl snubs into four quarters.

In fact, he was hot right from the start of the game, which was won 41-34 by the AFC. On the its first possession, the AFC team scored in only five plays and Fletcher played a role in the tackle on three of those plays. Up in the press box, some cracked that Fletcher must've missed the memo about the game only being an exhibition.

After the game, Fletcher said the entire Pro Bowl experience lived up to all expectations. In fact, he joked that he's already looking forward to returning next year. Fletcher said as fun as the game -- Redskins rookie Brian Orakpo also played -- was, he'll remember the entire experience.

"My favorite part, I think it was the days leading up to the game, being around the guys, their families," he said. "You play against these guys, you watch them do things from afar, so to get to know them in a different setting has been great. But that game was great, too.
This atmosphere was just awesome."

By Rick Maese  |  February 1, 2010; 6:49 AM ET
 
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Next: Orakpo's first Pro Bowl is a quiet one

Comments

First pro bowl for fletch, first post first for me. GO REDSKINS. Yee-Haw good buddy.

Posted by: glawrence007 | February 1, 2010 7:09 AM | Report abuse

Good for Fletch, got a case of the warm and fuzzies watching him roam around making tackles last night. Hope it's not his last trip.

Posted by: brownwood26 | February 1, 2010 7:27 AM | Report abuse

Way to go Fletch! You rock dude.

Posted by: last1 | February 1, 2010 7:32 AM | Report abuse

hey wood:

Top of the morning to ya' Yee-Haw GOOD BUDDY.

Posted by: glawrence007 | February 1, 2010 7:38 AM | Report abuse

Julius Peppers?

The 'Skins may be switching to a 3-4.

Peppers has a desire to play in a 3-4.

What about it?

Posted by: RedDMV | February 1, 2010 7:46 AM | Report abuse

Julius Peppers?

The 'Skins may be switching to a 3-4.

Peppers has a desire to play in a 3-4.

What about it?

Posted by: RedDMV | February 1, 2010 7:46 AM
------------------------------------------
That's a scary thought: Haynesworth and Peppers on the same line... Still, I think the team should focus on getting younger and grooming the prospects (on defense) that they have in house. Peppers is on the downside of his career and the Redskins have been burned too many times with signing the past-his-prime superstar.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | February 1, 2010 7:55 AM | Report abuse

Morning, GL.

Red, I could see that happening but this team needs to focus more on dumping big contracts than picking more up.

But it's hard not to fantasize about the havoc created by Peppers and Orakpo coming off the edge...

Posted by: brownwood26 | February 1, 2010 7:55 AM | Report abuse

brown and RSH I agree, Orakpo and Peppers would be an issue for opposing o-lines.

But yeah, this team needs to get younger still and signing Peppers would be just more of the same past mistakes.

Posted by: RedDMV | February 1, 2010 8:08 AM | Report abuse

Right, Red...I was a little miffed last year that the team didn't make a run at Cameron Wake, dude was a beast in the CFL and could have been had on the cheap. Hopefully, Jarmon pans out and makes it a moot point.

Damn, I can't wait for the draft...

Posted by: brownwood26 | February 1, 2010 8:11 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, brown. Wake came into the CFL beasting out from what I remember.

The only question would have been was, how would you use him in the NFL? I think he's one of those tweener types.

Posted by: RedDMV | February 1, 2010 8:18 AM | Report abuse

Predictions, predictions, predictions.....

Well, we got the Super Bowl half right.

In November, it looked like the big game would be Manning v. McNabb, but the biggest game in Philly now is guessing if #5 will be traded.

The iggles decided not to show up to meet the colts, so we now have Supermanning v. Drew "The Mole Man" Brees.

We'll ride Supermanning's cape to victory, but the Mole Man might be the MVP from a losing team.

Posted by: MistaMoe | February 1, 2010 8:22 AM | Report abuse

no peppers. the years of signing the most expensive free agent available are over. we have carter and orakpo (and chris wilson) as out OLBs

Posted by: mopp04 | February 1, 2010 8:25 AM | Report abuse

Red, he went to the Dolphins so that says to me he should be able to play OLB in a 3-4. Good coaches can overlook a guy not having all the measurables if he's a high motor guy and from what I hear, he's one of those guys.

Moe, I picked half the Super Bowl right in the preseason, just the other half. I had the Saints and Steelers in the Super Bowl with the Steelers winning again. I slept long and hard on the Colts; didn't even have them in the playoffs (silly me).

I'm done sleeping, though. I want the Saints to win, but I think the Colts win a close one.

Posted by: brownwood26 | February 1, 2010 8:28 AM | Report abuse

Here's a thought: suppose the Pro Bowl is limited to players who actually want to play?

Posted by: Samson151 | February 1, 2010 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Here's a thought: suppose the Pro Bowl is limited to players who actually want to play?

Posted by: Samson151 | February 1, 2010 8:34 AM


Then it would be London Fletcher and a bunch of rookies.

I say get rid of the game and just make it a post-season honor. But as long as the league is making money on it, that'll never happen. No matter how many 4th alternates play in the game.

What a crime to see Vince Young and David Garrard in the Pro-Bowl. Those two were completely mediocre this season.

Posted by: brownwood26 | February 1, 2010 8:43 AM | Report abuse

Go Colts
Go Colts
Go Colts

Posted by: RedDMV | February 1, 2010 8:44 AM | Report abuse

no thanks on peppers, and for 2 reasons, 1, he's gonna command HUGE money, and 2, he's not young, he's gonna be what, 30, next season?? Sorry, I'd rather younger guys.....just my .02..

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | February 1, 2010 8:48 AM | Report abuse

That seems to be the consensus here, Greg. As much as I like Peppers, he's been wildly inconsistent for a player of his caliber. He'll get big money, hopefully it won't be here.

Posted by: brownwood26 | February 1, 2010 8:54 AM | Report abuse

Here's my question of the day: Do you think Shannahan and Allen will have the stones to make the tough cuts/trades? I mean, if I am the guy on top, I'd trade or cut Portis, trade Moss for a taller receiver or draft pick, dump ARE, do a system reset on the offensive line, trade Carter for a legit 3-4 linebacker, cut Smoot, let Daniels and Wynn go, let Betts go, and let Cartwright go. I'd make it a mandate to get faster at running back, bigger at wide receiver, bigger at linebacker, and more athletic on the offensive line. So, will these guys have the cojones to pull this off?

Posted by: RedSkinHead | February 1, 2010 9:05 AM | Report abuse

BTW - I am going against conventional wisdom and saying the Saints will win the Superbowl. They just have this "team of destiny" feel about them this year.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | February 1, 2010 9:09 AM | Report abuse

ball bearings.

maps.

Great job, Fletch!

I only watched a while 'cause the wife wanted to watch 'Paranormal Activity' (sounds like a horror flick from Seinfeld, doesn't it?... I know... it is... lol).

I think she was still bitter about the Cow Patties finish.. heh.

Still, I actually like it. And I like that it's before the StuporBowel. Ballers havin' fun. What's wrong with that?

Posted by: DikShuttle | February 1, 2010 9:12 AM | Report abuse

RSH, it should be a lot easier for Shanny/Allen to do what you suggest (at least the spirit of it) because they have no emotional attachment to those guys. They didn't sign or draft any of the guys here so they should have no problem evaluating the film from this season and making the tough decisions. Just don't think that you're getting picks or quality players of any of the guys we're dumping, though.

Posted by: brownwood26 | February 1, 2010 9:12 AM | Report abuse

rsh, I don't get the logic on dumping moss just to get bigger...he's on the wrong end of 30, so if anything 4th round on back in a draft pick, so thats losing ground.

what you're asking for above in 1 offseason is nearly impossible....not to mention misguided...

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | February 1, 2010 9:13 AM | Report abuse

Peppers? Come on Red, thats a Snyderatto hire.

The guy has been nothing but a malcontent the past few years, and I don't want us signing anyone over 30.

Posted by: Rypien11 | February 1, 2010 9:25 AM | Report abuse

As almost all of us here are, I am a lifelong Redskins Fan. That being said the Shanny/Allen or "Shannallen" could trade every starter and their sister without any objection from this guy. If we can move Moss for a younger player and a draft pick down the road, go for it. If someone wants to trade for Landry give him to them and if necessary go get the band wagon out of Kornheiser's Garage just to sweeten the deal.
The simple point is I will cheer, spend, and follow the Redskins in 2010 even if they loose as long as I know there is a plan. If they go and draft and undrafted free agent 30%, ok. Just let there be a plan in place by draft day.

Posted by: Hank4 | February 1, 2010 9:39 AM | Report abuse

If we can move Moss for a younger player and a draft pick down the road, go for it

Moss for a rhino, and a years worth of rhino food....book it...championship....

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | February 1, 2010 9:42 AM | Report abuse

rsh, I don't get the logic on dumping moss just to get bigger...he's on the wrong end of 30, so if anything 4th round on back in a draft pick, so thats losing ground.

what you're asking for above in 1 offseason is nearly impossible....not to mention misguided...

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | February 1, 2010 9:13 AM
------------------------------------------
Moss' performance declined last year and he doesn't fit in a WCO. I say get some value out of him before he becomes a liability. As for the whole reconstruction process I suggested, I know it is a major change. It has been done before. Parcells really transformed the Dolphins in one year. I think what Ryan did with the Jets was a little less radical, but he made some monumental changes that will stick with the team for a really long time. What the Falcons did a few years ago was pretty extreme. They started a rookie QB and brought in a running back from another team. I think they started a rookie at left tackle as well.

All I am saying is Shanahan and Allen will never have the opportunity they have right now. The fans, management, players - all of them are expecting change, so do the big bang now, and get it over with while there is little resistance to change. Next year, they will have the emotional investment in the players that will make it harder to see everything in black and white, and the fans will be less understanding because they perceive anyone who stays automatically as "Shanahan's player".

Posted by: RedSkinHead | February 1, 2010 9:42 AM | Report abuse

Arguments for Peppers

10.5 on a DL where he's the only true pass rusher, and a defensive scheme that relies little on blitzes.

No cap this year and when a new agreement is ratified, contracts signed this offseason should likely have a reduced impact on the new cap.

AH here for effectively 3-4 years, Peppers has about that much play left in him.

Posted by: TWISI | February 1, 2010 9:44 AM | Report abuse

rsh, everyone's performance declined last year..I don't think you use last years offense as your barometer of success....

Moss was and is the best WR on this team....I think you can't get .50 on the dollar in a trade, so why bother...its kind of like the trade cooley or davis school of thought....trading any of those guys only hurts the team, we'd get no where CLOSE to equal value, and they'd end up weakening the team anyway.

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | February 1, 2010 9:48 AM | Report abuse

rsh, everyone's performance declined last year..I don't think you use last years offense as your barometer of success....

Moss was and is the best WR on this team....I think you can't get .50 on the dollar in a trade, so why bother...its kind of like the trade cooley or davis school of thought....trading any of those guys only hurts the team, we'd get no where CLOSE to equal value, and they'd end up weakening the team anyway.

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | February 1, 2010 9:48 AM
------------------------------------------
Moss is standing in the way of bigger younger players moving into the starting role. Trading him for anything is addition by subtraction.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | February 1, 2010 9:51 AM | Report abuse

"...I'd trade or cut Portis, trade Moss for a taller receiver or draft pick, dump ARE, do a system reset on the offensive line, trade Carter for a legit 3-4 linebacker, cut Smoot, let Daniels and Wynn go, let Betts go, and let Cartwright go..."

Some of this will happen, some of it will not.

Moss and Portis have contractual issues that suggest they'll be year next year.

Replacing A Carter with a guy just because he--Carter and his past pro bowl season--doesn't fit a scheme is something you just don't do.

ARE is like the wind--gone.

The rest of your points about Cartwright, Betts, Wynn, Smoot, are dead on.

The real question is, which linemen stay, who goes?

Posted by: MistaMoe | February 1, 2010 9:53 AM | Report abuse

Moss is standing in the way of bigger younger players moving into the starting role. Trading him for anything is addition by subtraction.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | February 1, 2010 9:51 AM


When you use terms like "addition by subtraction", that means the team is WORSE with a guy on the team than they are without him. There is no possible way that is true of Moss.

If you want a youth movement, I think we're all on board with that. But you can't have a COMPLETE youth movement where everybody on the roster is a rookie. You have to have some veteran leadership to go with the youth, and Moss qualifies for that role (at least I haven't heard otherwise). I'm all for dumping big salary, but you've gotta do it responsibly.

And there's nothing responsible about dumping Moss for a 6th round pick. And that's about all you can realistically expect for a 30 year-old WR with chronic hamstring issues.

Posted by: brownwood26 | February 1, 2010 10:02 AM | Report abuse

beep, beep

(first time beeper)

Posted by: brownwood26 | February 1, 2010 10:05 AM | Report abuse

ARE is like the wind--gone.
I would've gone for 'blows', but I don't see why they toss him overboard without compensation. He shows up, makes catches, and I don't recall him missing much time -- and with out preoccupation with 'injury prone', you'd think that should count for something.
this is the thing I don't get about the Carter haters -- plays almost every play, sixteen games a year, year in and year out, but because he doesn't singlehandedly dominate games, we toss him on the scrap heap?

Posted by: daggar | February 1, 2010 10:07 AM | Report abuse

ARE is like the wind--gone.
I would've gone for 'blows', but I don't see why they toss him overboard without compensation. He shows up, makes catches, and I don't recall him missing much time -- and with our preoccupation with 'injury prone', you'd think that should count for something.
this is the thing I don't get about the Carter haters -- plays almost every play, sixteen games a year, year in and year out, but because he doesn't singlehandedly dominate games, we toss him on the scrap heap?

Posted by: daggar | February 1, 2010 10:07 AM | Report abuse

ALLEN/SHANAHAN memo:

Draft two top OT's, or trade picks to get them.

I personally have been touting getting picks for established players to reverse the devastating effects that the "bag-man" had on this franchise.

But in an uncapped year, and with a pletheora of youngsters trying to avoid the potential of a rookie cap in 2011, we need picks now.

Let's give up players, and 2011 picks to the few AL DAVIS-types still left in this league, and pick young solid talent in this draft.

I agree with brownwood and Red, we don't need to be paying any more retirement contracts to over-the-hill superstars with declining talent ala JASON TAYLOR.

He cost us our sixth this year. BILL PARCELLS really took VINNIE and DANO to the cleaners on that one. Let's reverse the process.

And diesel, Yee-Haw good buddy.

Posted by: glawrence007 | February 1, 2010 10:08 AM | Report abuse

heckuva job, brownie.

Posted by: daggar | February 1, 2010 10:10 AM | Report abuse

The real question is, which linemen stay, who goes?

Posted by: MistaMoe | February 1, 2010 9:53 AM | Report abuse

I say JONES, HEYER to back-up rookies at both tackles, DOCKERY, E.WILLIAMS, RINEHART and M.WILLIAMS stay along with RABACH and MONTGOMERY while we try to draft replacements at RG and C. What isn't done this year should be done next, if there's no lock-out.

Yee-Haw good buddy.

Posted by: glawrence007 | February 1, 2010 10:13 AM | Report abuse

Then it would be London Fletcher and a bunch of rookies.

I say get rid of the game and just make it a post-season honor. But as long as the league is making money on it, that'll never happen. No matter how many 4th alternates play in the game.

What a crime to see Vince Young and David Garrard in the Pro-Bowl. Those two were completely mediocre this season.

Posted by: brownwood26 | February 1, 2010 8:43 AM | Report abuse

I say let the ALL-PRO ROOKIE (first and second votes) team play the rest of the All-PRO ESTABLISHMENT.

Yee-Haw good buddy.

Posted by: glawrence007 | February 1, 2010 10:19 AM | Report abuse

Real Quick. If you were to list the best players at each position for the last decade for the Redskins what would it look like? I am just going off memory so this is what I came up with.

QB: Brad Johnson- in what has been a dark 10 years at the QB spot he was the only one to break 4000 yards in a year and 1 of 2 to be a starter for 16 games in a row.
RB: Stephen Davis- I let him beat Portis because I don't remember Davis being a pain in the coach's back
FB: Mike Sellers- Can't really remember who our other fullbacks were anymore.
TE: Chris Cooley- I challenge anyone to debate this one, anyone who thinks we should trade Cooley is a nut.
WR: Laveranues Coles, Santan Moss- No contest here both were prolific for a while and despite the injuries and age still around the nfl today.
OT: Chris Samuels, John Janson- We only had 2 OT's for the decade and they were both solid for at least 1/2 of it, sadly it was the half where we did not have a QB or a RB for a lot of the time.
OG: Randy Thomas- I felt I had to leave one hole in our line every coach we seemed to have did.
OC: Rabach- the list of Centers on the skins for the 00's reads like a who's who of guys who are more or less unmemorable.
DE: Andre Carter, Philip Daneils- If I was looking at the guys and counting their time not on the skins roster I would easily go with Bruce Smith and Jason Taylor but they both had less than amazing careers with Washington.
DT: Dana Stubbelfield Albert Haynsworth- again a spot where the skins were unimpressive for most of the decade.
OLB: LaVar Arrington, Brian Orakpo- Some people hate LaVar but to me he was what what Skins fubball was all about, crazy violent hits that career Cowboys, is KpO the next LaVar?
MLB: London Fletcher- I mean we had a nice list of MLBs over the years no one stands out too much, but LFB has been a leader on what has been a struggling team at times.
CB: Champ Bailey, Daryl Green- Champ is maybe the best shutdown corner of the past few years. Green was the best corner in NFL history, go F yourself Deion.
SS: Sean Taylor (RIP)
FS:Ryan Clark- Come back to us Ryan pull a Smoot and get the right uniform on.

Posted by: alex35332 | February 1, 2010 10:32 AM | Report abuse

Here who I think goes from each position on offense:
QB-Collins-Career backup who was only effective in one system. Bringing in Grossman or someone already familiar with Shanahan's scheme as a backup makes more sense. JC can hold things down for a year or two while we groom his replacement, especially if we improve on the O-line.
HB-Portis, Betts, Cartwright-All getting old, beat up and as good as Rock is on Teams, getting younger at this position is a priority. Most undrafted rookies could get more production than these guys.
WR-ARE, maybe Moss. ARE is a given, too old and not effective. If we can get anything of value for Moss, you do it and get younger at the position. Need to find a return specialist in the latter rounds of the draft.
TE-None. Unless you can get a 2nd rounder or better for either Cooley or Davis, you should keep both and start using more 2 TE sets to maximize the talent you have. Yoder's a solid backup who is the best blocker of the three.
T-Resign Jones for a year or two and keep him and Heyer as primary backups to hopefully two drafted tackles to anchor our line for the next 10 years.
G/C-Keep Rabach, E. Willams and big Mike. Maybe keep Rhino if he has a good camp. Rabach can hold the line for another year while we groom his replacement and the others can be solid depth, although big Mike probably won't be a good fit in a zone-blocking scheme. Need to draft a solid swingman or grab some quality veterans in free agency who can at least hold things down for a year or two while their replacements are groomed.

Whew!

Posted by: DCinSD | February 1, 2010 11:47 AM | Report abuse

I am truly happy for London Fletcher. They don't make many players like this man anymore, a leader, classy, hard worker who does it right, on and off the field. How he came to be snubbed for the Pro Bowl for so long baffles me. I guess, life truly isn't fair.

In any case, the Pro Bowl was entertaining what of it I saw, (switched back and forth between the Grammys) I think it would be succesful if moved back to Hawawii, played like yesterday, the Sunday before the Super Bowl and require that all NFL players barring injury must play in the Pro Bowl if picked. Is that possible? Don't know what the union/or contract legalities of that would be.

But yeah, put it in all NFL player contracts, if your picked for the Pro Bowl you have to play as long as your not hurt.

Posted by: 72Redskins | February 1, 2010 1:01 PM | Report abuse

I came back from the Pro Bwol today and let me say I had a blast. "Skins Nation" truly represented in Miami, Florida. It was great to see London Fletcher running around like a little kid in his 1st all-star game. I hope the Pro Bowl stays in Miami or Tampa forever!

Posted by: ENJOYA | February 1, 2010 2:11 PM | Report abuse

I think that Mr. Fletcher was the only one in the pro bowl who really wanted it ! The game is so bad its like a popularity contest! The players in that game played like it! Can`t touch the QB or play any kind of defense! I think it sucks! But I must say go Fletcher and go Orakpo! BTW F-Dallas! Way to many Cowpatties in that game who did not deserve to be there!

Posted by: vexed50verizonnet | February 1, 2010 5:55 PM | Report abuse

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