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Orakpo's Exceeding Expectations

The buzz about rookie defensive end/strong-side linebacker Brian Orakpo continues to grow.

In his first NFL training camp, Orakpo has exceeded expectations that were already high when the Skins selected him with the No. 13 overall pick.

Orakpo often was unblockable during Saturday's intrasquad scrimmage when he rushed the passer as a hand-down end. Although Orakpo did not go against first-team tackles on every rep, he again displayed the speed and pass-rushing skills that have impressed veterans since the beginning of camp.

Orakpo still is adjusting to playing in space in coverage as a linebacker, and he was beaten during the scrimmage, but "I'm just working and getting better every day," he said. "You just have to keep learning every day."

Pro Bowl offensive lineman Chris Samuels has observed Orakpo closely -- and has struggled in pass protection against him.

"He's going to be excellent. He's awesome," Samuels said. "He doesn't seem like a rookie. He's strong, he's quick and he has the mentality of a five- or six-year vet in the game.

"He's coming hard. He's strong. He's really strong. He has the speed to beat you around the edge and beat you inside. But when it comes down to it, he can bull [rush] you and push you on top of the quarterback if you don't have proper hand position."

By Jason Reid  |  August 9, 2009; 4:44 PM ET
Categories:  Jason Reid  
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Comments

Awesome. Go Orakpo!

Posted by: MNSkinsFan | August 9, 2009 4:52 PM | Report abuse

OMG! I knew there had to be some good news coming out of the scrimmage yesterday. I haven't been this excited about a rookie since we drafted Arrington.

Might have to buy one a jersey. Do you think they will sell Orakpo jerseys this year? (JK for all my literal-minded critics).

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 9, 2009 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Great. LetS go Skins! From the other WA.

Posted by: dmlopez1 | August 9, 2009 5:08 PM | Report abuse

An excellent defensive rookie on an offensively challenged team.

"Whatta country....!"
--Yakoff Smirnoff, ex-Russian philosopher and failed American comic

Posted by: MistaMoe | August 9, 2009 5:09 PM | Report abuse

The fact that Dan Snyder & his front office made a big story out of a record 29,000 fans who showed up for the Redskins’ intra-squad scrimmage Saturday gives more evidence about The Dan & his true motives. All he is concerned with is putting fannies in seats, which puts money in his pocket. In this day when football is as much entertainment as athletic competition, The Dan believes that hiring entertainers is more important than molding a team to compete for championships. Because Redskins fans are so loyal that they will support their team even in lean years (as evidenced in the ‘60s), Snyder knows he can make money from merchandising big names even if Washington continues to suffer through losing seasons. Shame on The Dan for taking advantage of fans other owners would love to have.

Posted by: MrMerkin | August 9, 2009 5:09 PM | Report abuse

I couldn't have been happier drafting him where we did and glad he's looking good. Hook em and Hail.

Posted by: AdamCr | August 9, 2009 5:10 PM | Report abuse

Why did the beep cross the road? (To avoid the collision between scamp and myrtlebeachmike).

Posted by: talent_evaluator |

Sounds like MBM's got a crack full of sand fleas. Those little bastards would make anybody seem like a crotchety old crank.

Posted by: scampbell1975 | August 9, 2009 5:17 PM | Report abuse

The fact that Dan Snyder & his front office made a big story out of a record 29,000

Posted by: MrMerkin | August 9, 2009 5:09 PM

Calling planet Merkin, calling planet Merkin: You and Jason Reid are the only two I've seen "making a big story" out of this. I just looked at the Redskins webpage and there are five stories ahead of this one, including a story about Bruce Smith paying tribute to the Redskins, which is more than "loyal fans" like you are doing.

You can say a lot of bad things about Dan Snyder but it takes a loose screw to think he doesn't want to win a championship. He's spending more of his own money than most other owners in the league and it's not about hiring "entertainers." If you think Orakpo is an entertainer, go stand between him and a QB sometime and see how enteraining that is.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 9, 2009 5:22 PM | Report abuse

I love Orakpo and the reports but really think he needs to be an every down DE. This is where he provides us the most value and upside. It may take a year but this guy was made to rush the QB.

HAIL

Posted by: Notorious_LMG | August 9, 2009 5:26 PM | Report abuse

orakpo might end up seeing a lot more time at DE if we ever get another stud LB or new coaches if zorn goes by the wayside if we have an average season.

maybe off topic, but my 2 cents to Mr. Merkins post, there is no way anybody could mount a big boycott of danny boy. I still buy my season tickets, but I stopped buying all other merchandise, For as much as everyone gives the FO crap, the players still have to produce. I am a life long skins and Orioles fan so I am just going with the flow and never get my hopes up too early. I was pumped when we were 6-2 last year but we all know what happened after that.

Posted by: stivic | August 9, 2009 5:41 PM | Report abuse

Merkin = Burley's cramped clam.

Posted by: SkinsfaninKaneohe | August 9, 2009 5:45 PM | Report abuse

The obvious question is; if your offensive line is so brittle that you end up reaching a point where you play guys who really should not even be on the field .... as really happened last year against Baltimore! Will having a great defense make up for that? It didn't last year against Baltimore, so why does the FO (well, okay Danny Snyder who overrules the FO) believe that it will? Snyder might as well start carrying around a Plutonium rod in his back pocket ala Homer Simpson. Doh!

Posted by: periculum | August 9, 2009 5:51 PM | Report abuse

I love Orakpo and the reports but really think he needs to be an every down DE.

Posted by: Notorious_LMG | August 9, 2009 5:26 PM

He has more upside as a hybrid. We don't need an every down pass rusher, do we?

I say give him time. If he doesn't work out at SLB, then we can switch him back.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 9, 2009 5:53 PM | Report abuse

This is where he provides us the most value and upside. It may take a year but this guy was made to rush the QB.

Noting that **NO ONE** has mentioned anything about his effectiveness against THE RUN, which happens just as often if not more often than passing plays? Most of the accolades have come on passing downs.

If he stands up huge fullbacks diving into the line, pushes 2 offensive linemen deep into the backfield on a running play snap, tripping the ball carrier ... then you can start talking about putting him next to Haynesworth on every down.

Posted by: periculum | August 9, 2009 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Hello Fellow Skins Fans--It's been several months for me, glad to read you are still here TE and Scampbell!!

So glad to hear Orakpo is a looking like he will be a stud!!

Now, how about that OL?
HTTR!

Posted by: RedskinRay1 | August 9, 2009 5:57 PM | Report abuse

Clearly, Snyder desperately wants to win. But just as clearly, he also likes to make money and big splashes just as much. Sometimes it does appear as if the two priorities are "switched". Especially when it comes to selling t-shirts .. jk.

Snyder is a ***TERRIBLE*** NFL general manager. That is what he is ... because it sure as heck isn't Cerrato. Unfortunately, I see this season turning into the classic example as to why that
is true. I definitely do not want to see that ...
but ...

Posted by: periculum | August 9, 2009 6:00 PM | Report abuse

Hello Fellow Skins Fans--It's been several months for me, glad to read you are still here TE and Scampbell!!

So glad to hear Orakpo is a looking like he will be a stud!!

Now, how about that OL?
HTTR!

Posted by: RedskinRay1 | August 9, 2009 5:57 PM

Ray, scamp and I own the place. Everyone else just pays us rent. Yours is overdue.

We're not talking about the OL. That was yesterday. We're adding a late fee to your overdue rent for bringing it up.

Good to see you around. Don't be a stranger.... etc.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 9, 2009 6:02 PM | Report abuse

He got accolades against the run in todays scrimmage. Zorn said he tested him today. Still early though.

Posted by: AdamCr | August 9, 2009 6:02 PM | Report abuse

Good to have you back Ray. I think it's safe to say our OLine needs help.

Posted by: scampbell1975 | August 9, 2009 6:03 PM | Report abuse

TalentEvaluator:
Evaluate Snyder better. He's got you drinking the Kool-Aid. If, as you suggest, "he's spending more of his own money than most other owners," he's only spending it to make money.

Posted by: MrMerkin | August 9, 2009 6:11 PM | Report abuse

Hey TE and Scamp
Yes, I can see why my rent would be overdue.
I can't even recall if I've posted on here since the draft!
Yes, I read the blog articles, but haven't been posting w/ you guys in a few months.

Sure wish Mike Williams could return to be the player he was expected to be. Perhaps this experience will be a wakeup call for him, they will place him on IR, he'll stick around, diet, work out, bring him back next year, and he will be ready to roll.

Posted by: RedskinRay1 | August 9, 2009 6:32 PM | Report abuse

they will place him on IR, he'll stick around, diet, work out, bring him back next year, and he will be ready to roll.

Posted by: RedskinRay1 | August 9, 2009 6:32 PM

Not a chance that he goes on IR. If they put him on IR, they have to pay him for the year. That's a hit against the salary cap for a guy that they can hire off the street after the season's over. His football days may be over for good if he doesn't make the 53-man roster.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 9, 2009 6:47 PM | Report abuse

Snyder runs the amusement park that is the redskins better than he does six flags. If only there were funnel cakes at fedex

Posted by: murphyz | August 9, 2009 6:47 PM | Report abuse

mmmmmm funnel cakes...

Posted by: scampbell1975 | August 9, 2009 6:51 PM | Report abuse

Ray,

Maybe they can hire him as a quality control coach or something. Let him work out, stick around the team without actually participating in drills, pick up a paycheck (less than the vet minimum), but not count against the salary cap. Don't know whether that would pass muster with the league or not.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 9, 2009 6:53 PM | Report abuse

They ought to hire him as a dietician

Posted by: scampbell1975 | August 9, 2009 6:57 PM | Report abuse

Moss doesn't need the practice anyway...bring him along slowly. Needs fresh legs for live bullets.

Posted by: chrislarry | August 9, 2009 11:22 AM

So you agree that Portis shouldn't practice either and the media is being too hard on Portis (during the season)???......

Posted by: 4thFloor | August 9, 2009 7:00 PM | Report abuse

I'm hoping to hear at one of these practices, that Samuels shut down Orakpo. At least one day.

Posted by: clark202 | August 9, 2009 7:01 PM | Report abuse

So, Orakpo is exceeding expectations, ehhh?

He excelled in pass rushing against 3rd string Tackles in an intrasaud scrimmage and got beat in pass coverage by the 2nd team offense....

Someone explain to me how this is 'exceeding expectations'?????

Posted by: 4thFloor | August 9, 2009 7:03 PM | Report abuse

beep...hehehehe...

Posted by: 4thFloor | August 9, 2009 7:10 PM | Report abuse

I love Orakpo and the reports but really think he needs to be an every down DE.

Posted by: Notorious_LMG | August 9, 2009 5:26 PM

It may not happen this year or next, but I think we'll be seeing Orapko and Jamon as our RE and LE, respectively, for a decade or so.

Posted by: kenboy1 | August 9, 2009 7:14 PM | Report abuse

We're going to the Super Bowl!

Posted by: ItsOver1 | August 9, 2009 8:38 PM | Report abuse

We're going to the Super Bowl!

Posted by: ItsOver1 | August 9, 2009 8:38 PM | Report abuse

Orakpo exceeds someones expectations. The ethereal expectation god who judges draft picks every season. And just what were the expectations of a man the redskins spent millions on?

Posted by: firemetalrat | August 10, 2009 3:13 AM | Report abuse

Good news! We'll lose a lot of 13-10 games!!!

Posted by: kone | August 10, 2009 7:44 AM | Report abuse

You can say a lot of bad things about Dan Snyder but it takes a loose screw to think he doesn't want to win a championship. He's spending more of his own money than most other owners in the league and it's not about hiring "entertainers." If you think Orakpo is an entertainer, go stand between him and a QB sometime and see how enteraining that is.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 9, 2009 5:22 PM | Report abuse

AMEN

Posted by: scottmando | August 10, 2009 8:45 AM | Report abuse

Snyder may want to win a championship, but a bigger priority is making money. Only a “loose screw” would say Orakpo is all show and no business. But what’s your take on bringing in over-priced and over-the-hill show horses such as Deion Sanders, Bruce Smith, or Jason Taylor? Also, why continue to refuse to hire a competent general manager if you really want to win? Why put up with Cerrato’s dismal track record yet be willing to toss out Zorn in just his second year if he doesn’t go to the playoffs this year? The second question is easier to answer: Snyder wants a “sexy” coach, such as Cowher or Shanahan, to put fannies in seats. Support Snyder if you want. That’s your privilege. But I see a an owner intent on making money more than I see an owner intent on doing what it takes to mold a true team and win titles.

Posted by: MrMerkin | August 10, 2009 9:03 AM | Report abuse

it's a conspiracy MrMerkin, a huge conspiracy. Thanks for bringing it to light.

Posted by: trolly_time | August 10, 2009 10:10 AM | Report abuse

"But I see a an owner intent on making money more than I see an owner intent on doing what it takes to mold a true team and win titles."

Then go watch some other team and stop posting this drivel so the rest of us REAL fans can go back to talking about football.

Why do people so desperately seek out things that only annoy them? Just get over it and stop supporting the Skins already. I am about sick to death of all the negativity in here...I argue more with Skins fans nowadays than Cowboy fans.

Posted by: McMetal | August 10, 2009 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Mock me as a conspiracy theorist, if you want, but riddle me this, Batman: Why would so many sports films from "Slapshot" to "Any Given Sunday" to "The Natural" be so popular if the idea of a disengenuous owner didn't resonate with fans and sports insiders and have a ring of verisimilitude?

Posted by: MrMerkin | August 10, 2009 10:46 AM | Report abuse

Merkin, you're right about Snyder doing all he can to squeeze every last dime out of the Redskins...but you're wrong if you're characterizing him as being the only owner who does it or that he does so to maliciously attack his fanbase. EVERY SINGLE OWNER in the NFL is concerned about their bottom line, putting fans in the stands, maximizing revenue, selling concessions, jerseys, programs, you name it. It's a business and they are in it to make money. The only things that are different about Snyder are that A) he's really good at sniffing out revenue and B) he's got a product that allows him to maximize his opportunities. You don't think the ownership of the Colts or Bills would love to have the same opportunities? You're dreaming.

Plus, say what you want about his GM skills or his track record, but it would be ludicrous to even suggest that he's not sinking more resources in the Skins than almost any other owner in the league. Yes, he rakes in lots of cash but he also pours more of it back into the franchise than just about anyone else. All that money he makes from the team is what allows him to always be pressed up against the cap with the largest amounts of "dead money" and still dole out huge signing bonuses to star players. You need to be a high revenue franchise to employ a strategy like this and nobody does it better. I won't argue that so far his ownership techniques have generated more disappointments than success stories but I personally will take a flawed but dedicated owner who will spend money like Snyder over a tight-fisted ownership group like the Bengals any day.

Posted by: jhcarson | August 10, 2009 11:33 AM | Report abuse

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