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Wilson in Transition (Updated)

Following practice on Monday afternoon, Washington Redskins linebacker-defensive end Chris Wilson walked in off the field chatting with first-round draft pick Brian Orakpo and linebackers coach Kirk Olivadotti, the two people in the organization with whom the third-year player is most closely linked this year.

While Orakpo's progress transitioning from defensive end to strong-side linebacker has been well chronicled through training camp, Wilson is trying to make the switch, as well, and the two have leaned on each other throughout the process.

Wilson said he was going over a play he had seen Orakpo come against in practice, just to discuss how he might have handled it.

"We make each other better," Wilson said. "We play the same position so I'm always watching him when he's in the game, I believe he's watching me when I'm in the game and even with [linebacker Alfred Fincher], so you want to know the call, you want to get that mental rep. When you're making a transition you want millions of reps, but you only get so many."

At 6 feet 4, 247 pounds, Wilson was considered undersized for a defensive end and had been used sparingly as a situation pass rusher in his first two seasons with the Redskins. This offseason, he was asked to make the switch to linebacker and spent much of his time working with Olivadotti in the film room.

After one preseason game, Wilson said he still has much to work on, but said has learned from some of the new things he faced at game speed last Saturday in Baltimore.

"I felt good, I still feel like I wasn't shooting my gun as fast I can," Wilson said. "There was some situations that I was in that I hadn't seen before in practice and that'll all come with time and come with practice and getting accustomed to playing a position. Even in practice I'm kind of breaking and shooting faster because I've seen it before, so we're just getting better. Every rep counts, even when I'm not in, you get that mental rep and this week you should see a lot more out of me."

Morning Practice Update

Rick Maese popped into the press room to report that linebacker Robert Thomas does not seem to be at practice today. Anthony Alridge is there but not in pads....

By Paul Tenorio  |  August 18, 2009; 8:00 AM ET
 
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Comments

First? Wow...

Posted by: brownwood26 | August 18, 2009 8:20 AM | Report abuse

I'm not so sure velosORAKPO is watching a 3rd year bubble player too much... at least I hope he's not....

Posted by: DikShuttle | August 18, 2009 8:20 AM | Report abuse

Today's listening assignment:

Newly released POLVO album!!!

You can stream the album there... but here's a cut: Beggars Bowl

good shti!

progenitors of a genre they dissavow! Math Rock!

Posted by: DikShuttle | August 18, 2009 8:30 AM | Report abuse

Talent, I have consumed many Hurricanes at Pat O'Brien's. A friend lives in New Orleans and, no matter how many times I've been there and how many times they've upset my tum, I still want one first thing when I arrive.

Posted by: Cindy Boren | August 18, 2009 8:32 AM | Report abuse

Nothing like putting practice in gametime and evaluating feedback to get better. It is huge. Third.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | August 18, 2009 8:34 AM | Report abuse

I love scotch. Scotchy, scotch, scotch. Here it goes down, down into my belly

I'm...friends with Merlin Olsen, too, he comes over...on occasion.

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | August 18, 2009 8:36 AM | Report abuse

Uh, uh, fifth.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | August 18, 2009 8:36 AM | Report abuse

Bears wide receiver Devon Hester was honest about his feelings regarding Jay Cutler's postgame statements. After Bills defensive back Leodis McKelvin picked off a deep ball Cutler probably shouldn't have launched while on his back foot -- a ball intended for Hester -- Cutler addressed the matter after the game by saying: "Devin is more of a go-get-it guy. He's not really a back-shoulder, jump-up-and-get-it [guy], and ... you learn from it. You make some mistakes. It's a preseason game." Hester, who admitted he could have made a better play on the ball, was asked Monday if he was offended by the statement. "I was when I read it, but then he said he didn't say it," Hester said, referring to a text message sent from Cutler.

Chicago Tribune

Posted by: jm220 | August 18, 2009 8:37 AM | Report abuse

jm, Cutler has a million dollar arm/shoulder, but a 10 cent brain, I wanted no part of that cat back in Feb/March, and I want no part of him now....there has been too many of these type of things for there NOT to be something amiss...first it was the Urlacher called him a 'bad word', then this....at some point in time, there has to be a small amount of truth to this stuff...

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | August 18, 2009 8:43 AM | Report abuse

Cutler can't shoots from the lip and can't take responsibility for his own words and actions. He's anything but a leader. You've got to wonder what kind of a front office would want to trade their future for this guy.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 18, 2009 8:47 AM | Report abuse

jm, Cutler has a million dollar arm/shoulder, but a 10 cent brain, I wanted no part of that cat back in Feb/March, and I want no part of him now....there has been too many of these type of things for there NOT to be something amiss...first it was the Urlacher called him a 'bad word', then this....at some point in time, there has to be a small amount of truth to this stuff...

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | August 18, 2009 8:43 AM


I'm with you, Greg. As underwhelming as JC has been here, I didn't believe that Cutler was enough of an upgrade (if an upgrade at all) to warrant trading for him. Dude has elite talent but a last place attitude.

Posted by: brownwood26 | August 18, 2009 8:47 AM | Report abuse

One too many can'ts in that first sentence.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 18, 2009 8:48 AM | Report abuse

Talent, I have consumed many Hurricanes at Pat O'Brien's. A friend lives in New Orleans and, no matter how many times I've been there and how many times they've upset my tum, I still want one first thing when I arrive.

Posted by: Cindy Boren | August 18, 2009 8:32 AM

Cindy goes to New Orleans and drinks hurricanes? I'm shocked by this.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 18, 2009 8:50 AM | Report abuse

One too many can'ts in that first sentence.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 18, 2009 8:48 AM

lol

Posted by: RedCherokee | August 18, 2009 8:51 AM | Report abuse

Larry, your blog-math-fu is weak.
To recap, here are 1-10:
FIRST.
10.
3.
#.
D.
@.
99.
пr^2.
No, пr round.
11.

Posted by: daggar | August 18, 2009 8:53 AM | Report abuse

Leigh Torrence drinks ACTUAL hurricanes - at 110mph.

Posted by: DikShuttle | August 18, 2009 8:53 AM | Report abuse

I am happy we didn't pick him up as well.

Posted by: jm220 | August 18, 2009 8:54 AM | Report abuse

You've got to wonder if Cutler acts like this with Lovey Smith as his coach, how would he behave with Zorn?

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 18, 2009 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Leigh Torrence drinks ACTUAL hurricanes - at 110mph.

Posted by: DikShuttle | August 18, 2009 8:53 AM |

With Cindy Boren?

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 18, 2009 9:02 AM | Report abuse

Cindy, I've been to New Orleans and saw that Superdome.. I thought it looked like a nuclear reactor.. then I saw the dome above it.. "Uh-oh, they've closed the roof.."

Posted by: RedCherokee | August 18, 2009 9:09 AM | Report abuse

Beantown... You live in the Boston area I assume. Me too. Mice to know there's another skins fan around.

Posted by: bostskin | August 18, 2009 9:12 AM | Report abuse

Well, that was nice...not mice. Although mice is pretty cool.

Posted by: bostskin | August 18, 2009 9:14 AM | Report abuse

I agree Cutler seems like a little what Urlacher called him and I while I want an upgrade on JC I wouldn't have been comfortable paying what the Bears did to get him. However, I am still bummed we didn't do what it takes to get Sanchez. Orakpo so far looks like a great pick and I'm glad we got him but QB is infinitely more important than a LB/DE (especially on an already stout defense). IMHO we had to make a move to get a quality QB before our one year maybe two year window closed. Now we are stuck with average JC and will waste a great defense once again with a crappy offense. JC is mediocre, he will be gone next year and we'll be looking for a QB along with looking for two tackles, a guard, a center, and CP has maybe two seasons left as a franchise back, our offense has a long long way to go......

Posted by: zjfr2 | August 18, 2009 9:27 AM | Report abuse

our offense has a long long way to go......

Posted by: zjfr2 | August 18, 2009 9:27 AM

Orakpo's a top 5 pick but slipped to 13. We got lucky. Forget the QB's.. even Brady wouldn't have much success with our offense. Would be nice if we had a young Largent and Monk.. (sigh)

Posted by: RedCherokee | August 18, 2009 9:36 AM | Report abuse

Hit refresh for the morning practice update -- delivered by Rick Maese from the press room at Redskins Park.

Posted by: Cindy Boren | August 18, 2009 9:39 AM | Report abuse

IMHO we had to make a move...

Posted by: zjfr2 | August 18, 2009 9:27 AM |

Jack, When has your O ever been H?

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 18, 2009 9:42 AM | Report abuse

bostkin, welcome, yeah, actually south of Boston, south shore area to be specific.....how about yourself...

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | August 18, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

LOL...Jack's kids are probably in college by now.

Where's Rob Thomas?

Posted by: McMetal | August 18, 2009 9:52 AM | Report abuse

One too many can'ts in that first sentence.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 18, 2009 8:48 AM | Report abuse
Is this a re-can't, a recant, or a recount?

Posted by: frediefritz | August 18, 2009 9:55 AM | Report abuse

How about if we call Brian, Orakporaptor?

Posted by: charley42 | August 18, 2009 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Those were his words, but he meant it in the good way. What man doesn't like PUSSY?

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 18, 2009 9:51 AM

I'm glad you asked:

- The guys from Queer Eye
- Clay Aiken
- Adam Lambert
- F it...every male American Idol finalist
- Richard Chamberlain
- Ricky Martin
- Tony Romo
- O.J. Simpson...at least in a couple years he won't

I could go on, but I think you get the idea.

Posted by: brownwood26 | August 18, 2009 9:58 AM | Report abuse

drfunknsoul,

"i havn't seen a beating like that since someone stuck a banana in my pants and turned a monkey loose"

Clark W Griswold

Posted by: Skins281

Sorry to get back so late on this...but it was actually said TO Clark Griswold by Cousin Eddy

Posted by: drfunknsoul | August 18, 2009 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Chris Wilson:
"...Even in practice I'm kind of breaking and shooting faster because I've seen it before, so we're just getting better. Every rep counts, even when I'm not in, you get that mental rep and this week you should see a lot more out of me."

I've heard this repeatedly from players" "I need the reps" and "I need the reps at game speed." Given comments like this, why would a coach ever keep players that are healthy out of a preseason game? A player risks injury every time they go to practice, so I don't buy that they are saving them from injury. Even the veterans need the reps and I think Zorn is wrong for letting players like Haynesworth and Portis sit out the first game.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | August 18, 2009 10:06 AM | Report abuse

Redskinhead, this is because Chris Wilson is learning a new position. He's saying that every rep counts because he's not 100% familiar with the LB position yet and wants to work as much as he can on learning it.

An 8 year vet, on the other hand, who's played the same position his entire career probably doesn't need every single possible rep that he can get.

Posted by: -swb | August 18, 2009 10:10 AM | Report abuse

I think Zorn is wrong for letting players like Haynesworth and Portis sit out the first game.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | August 18, 2009 10:06 AM

I'd agree with you if it were Portis or Haynesworth saying it. But it's not. It's Chris Wilson, trying to learn a new position.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 18, 2009 10:12 AM | Report abuse

Zorn is wrong for letting players like Haynesworth and Portis sit out the first game.


No, no he's not. Neither player needs pre-season reps. I'm not worried about either guy not being either in shape, or ready for the first game of the season. The risk / reward is WAY, WAY, too heavy on the risk side of things with pre-season games.

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | August 18, 2009 10:12 AM | Report abuse

Charlie, I been callin' him a variation on that: VelosORAKPO

I like O-SACK-PO and BORAK too...

Posted by: DikShuttle | August 18, 2009 10:12 AM | Report abuse

Just a thought. Who runs the scout team offense to prepare the defense for facing the wildcat? Randel El? Somebody has to be running it in practice at least. Particularly with Vick in Philly now. Maybe Zorn is being sly about his interest in using it in his regular offense.

Posted by: skinswest | August 18, 2009 10:14 AM | Report abuse

Zorn is wrong for letting players like Haynesworth and Portis sit out the first game.


No, no he's not. Neither player needs pre-season reps. I'm not worried about either guy not being either in shape, or ready for the first game of the season. The risk / reward is WAY, WAY, too heavy on the risk side of things with pre-season games.

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | August 18, 2009 10:12 AM


Agreed, Greg. Tomlinson never plays in the preseason and he's been the best RB in the league for several years. Preseason is for bubble players to make a case for staying on the roster and for rookies/new players to get a feel for live reps in the new situation. Star players/established vets have no business playing these games.

Posted by: brownwood26 | August 18, 2009 10:16 AM | Report abuse

Skinshead: Why do I think you'd be one of the loudest screamers calling the coaches idiots if a Portis/Big Al type got hurt in a preseason game?

Finding the sweet spot between too much/too little is a nuance of coaching and particular to the individual player/team/coach.

Posted by: chrislarry | August 18, 2009 10:18 AM | Report abuse

Beaner, SkinHed, et. al.,

I see both sides of this issue. So I really think it depends on the demands of the position/squad.

Obviously ALL the OLinemen need more reps than they can possibly get at this point. (then again, could THAT even help... lol). And the starting receivers all need more time w/ the QB to develop any confidence. That was a big hinderence in Soup's first starting season and probably remains.

But CPo is always on. And Haney can have as much rest as he wants, IMO.

Didn't realize zjkfnshensndehhksks was Jack. WBJ&JK

Posted by: DikShuttle | August 18, 2009 10:18 AM | Report abuse

DS,

No matter what the nickname Orapko+ is a tongue twister.

Posted by: charley42 | August 18, 2009 10:26 AM | Report abuse

And if he does a Shaq & works for the police, he can be Orakpo-po-po.

...maps...


[:-|

Posted by: DikShuttle | August 18, 2009 10:33 AM | Report abuse

I've heard this repeatedly from players" "I need the reps" and "I need the reps at game speed." Given comments like this, why would a coach ever keep players that are healthy out of a preseason game? A player risks injury every time they go to practice, so I don't buy that they are saving them from injury. Even the veterans need the reps and I think Zorn is wrong for letting players like Haynesworth and Portis sit out the first game.


Posted by: RedSkinHead | August 18, 2009 10:06 AM | Report abuse

I disagree, RSH. CP is not learning a new position like CWilson is. And Haynesworth is new to our system, but has 7 yrs of NFL experience. I am more concerned that AH's and CP's bodies will wear down by the endo of the season, than I am in getting them reps in Aug.

Posted by: frediefritz | August 18, 2009 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Skinshead: Why do I think you'd be one of the loudest screamers calling the coaches idiots if a Portis/Big Al type got hurt in a preseason game?

Posted by: chrislarry | August 18, 2009 10:18 AM

Portis actually did get hurt in preseason a few years ago -- making a tackle on an INT, I think. Messed up his shoulder and his season.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 18, 2009 10:37 AM | Report abuse

beeps

Posted by: BeantownGreg1 | August 18, 2009 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Hurt his shoulder making a tackle against the Bungals on a Brunel INT, wasn't right the whole year. CP doesn't need to play in a single preseason game, he has already taken more than his share of punishment in the league, he is already over the 2,000 barrier and closing in on the 30 year wall, we should be sitting whenever and wherever we can the rest of his career.

Posted by: zjfr2 | August 18, 2009 10:46 AM | Report abuse

Skinshead: Why do I think you'd be one of the loudest screamers calling the coaches idiots if a Portis/Big Al type got hurt in a preseason game?

Posted by: chrislarry | August 18, 2009 10:18 AM

Portis actually did get hurt in preseason a few years ago -- making a tackle on an INT, I think. Messed up his shoulder and his season.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | August 18, 2009 10:37 AM | Report abuse
You are correct, TE. CP must have raced 50 yards downfield on that play, in a PRESEASON game, no less! I cannot believe that some bloggers question his heart or abilities. Yes, he has lost some speed from his Denver years. But he has added bulk to become one of the best RB blockers in the game.

Yes, he does mouth off alot, but that is just CP. If you can get past his occasional blast, he is a well-rounded RB, and is still a stud. Hope we can get a few more years out of his body.

Posted by: frediefritz | August 18, 2009 10:47 AM | Report abuse

Again Redskin fans how is Campbell an underachiever? Is he the underachiever or has this idiotic managment team undermined him?
Not drafting offensive lineman is assinine especially as the so called management team evaluates what it has on the roster and watches it grow , rot, and get injured.

Changing coaches and schemes every year is not going to help any quarterback and especially without an adequate offensive line..You same people whining about Campbells ineffectiveness then whine about Portis's brash comments concernin ghaving a weak or soft offensive line...Get your football iq's check out , please

Posted by: TheBeatDontStop | August 19, 2009 10:53 AM | Report abuse

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