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Orakpo Signing Is Step Forward for Defense

With the late-night signing Thursday of top pick Brian Orakpo, the Redskins have a chance to set their defense soon.

Although linebacker Alfred Fincher and defensive end/linebacker Chris Wilson are expected to continue to compete with Orakpo throughout camp and the preseason at strong-side linebacker, the Skins figure Orakpo is their best option at the position because of his size and athleticism.

He showed them enough in his limited offseason work to persuade defensive coordinator Greg Blache to continue the experiment of converting him from a guy who mostly put his hand down and rushed the passer in college to someone who often plays in space in coverage as a pro.

Wil Orakpo make a smooth transition? Only time will tell, but at least the team can resume finding out more about Orakpo now.

By Jason Reid  |  July 31, 2009; 6:09 AM ET
Categories:  Jason Reid  
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Next: Offensive Line a Work in Progress

Comments

First to welcome Orakpo and say that he should never do anything but rush the passer. No chance that he would be good at anything else, as far as I'm concerned.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | July 31, 2009 6:27 AM | Report abuse

An early morning first.

Posted by: last1 | July 31, 2009 6:28 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, but not early enough to be first here, last.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | July 31, 2009 6:30 AM | Report abuse

Didn't the Skins learn anything from last years Jason Taylor experiment. If you're gonna get a great player, let him do what he's great at. Don't move him into a position that he's not familiar with. Let him play DE and get after the QB or at least have him play DE when we play against more mobile QB's like McNabb.

Posted by: vegasskinsfan | July 31, 2009 6:21 AM


I've been saying this for months and T_E refuses to buy into the ideology that maybe, just maybe, a rookie is gonna have a hard time adjusting the speed of the NFL game. You don't teach a kid to ride a bike by throwing him on a 10-speed Schwinn, you put him on a bike with training wheels and let him work his way up. The Redskins don't have the luxury (or the depth) to bring him along slowly, he needs to be out there wreaking havoc on the QB TODAY.

This team has an unsettling history of not putting guys in the best possible position to succeed, and that has a lot to do with my objections to playing Orakpo at LB.

Posted by: brownwood26 | July 31, 2009 6:36 AM | Report abuse

Here's hoping he'll prove me wrong............

Posted by: 4thFloor | July 31, 2009 6:55 AM | Report abuse

Didn't the Skins learn anything from last years Jason Taylor experiment. If you're gonna get a great player, let him do what he's great at.

Posted by: vegasskinsfan | July 31, 2009 6:21 AM

I've been saying this for months.

Posted by: brownwood26 | July 31, 2009 6:36 AM

Jason Taylor = Brian Orakpo
That makes a lot of sense to me.

Brownwood and Vegas are guys from the "You Can't Teach a Young Dog New Tricks" school of football. They think you shouldn't let a guy try anything that he has never done before. They believe that the coaches at the University of Texas know what a guy's skills are and, by golly, these NFL coaches like Blache don't have a clue. After all, if Blache knew what he was doing he would be coaching at Texas, not the Redskins. And if Orakpo were good at SLB, then the University of Texas Longhorns would have played him at SLB.

Dudes. If he can't play the position, then you put him back at DE. If he can, then you play him at SLB. Nothing ventured nothing gained and all that good stuff.

10 Speed Schwinns? They haven't made those since like 1985. And plenty of us learned to ride on one of them. Sorry if you fell off trying.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | July 31, 2009 6:59 AM | Report abuse

beep beep

Posted by: talent_evaluator | July 31, 2009 7:01 AM | Report abuse

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