RICHMOND – For just about every NFL team, one of the most optimistic days of the year is the eve of training camp. Everyone is 0-0, and everyone loves their chances to improve. The Washington Redskins are no different.
Head coach Jay Gruden proclaimed all previously injured players are ready to go for Thursday’s opening day of camp at the Bon Secours Training Center. Linemen Trent Williams and Morgan Moses (Meadowbrook HS, UVA), defensive back DeAngelo Hall (Virginia Tech), tight end Jordan Reed, and linebacker Ryan Kerrigan all missed part or all of the offseason OTA practices, but will all be on the field on day one.
“We’ll monitor them as we go but we expect good things from all 5 of those guys” Gruden said.
In his second year as head coach, Gruden is is a different and hopefully better position of evaluation over the roster. New general manager Scot McCloghan has said he wants to build a tougher team from top to bottom. Gruden admitted his players may not have been ready for that in the past, but believes they should be now.
“Some of the guys we have in house weren’t asked to do some of the tough things we’re asking them to do” Gruden said. “We’ll see how it transpires in camp. Our offensive line, defensive line, tight ends, backs, we expect tough football players, linebackers. It’s going to start in training camp right now.”
The team also announced that Kerrigan has signed a contract extension which should, effectively, make him a Redskin for life. Although terms of the deal weren’t formally announced, the NFL Network reported it was a 5 year extension worth $11.5 million per year with a $16 million signing bonus, the going rate for a dynamic defensive player who had 13.5 sacks last year and tied for the league lead in forced fumbles with 5.
“Nothing would have changed had I not gotten it done and nothing’s going to change now that I do have it done” Kerrigan said. “I still have a lot to prove this year, to myself and to the rest of the football world. We’ve got a lot of of making up to do for the last couple years.”