RICHMOND, Va. — The Washington Redskins and the Houston Texans’ final joint practice Saturday morning at training camp in Richmond looked more the royal rumble than anything else.
In fact, the teams were involved in three separate fights on both practice fields in a five-minute span.
But once the tempers calmed down, it was back to business. And with the preseason opener just six days away, Redskins players saw their team become closer — in a weird sort of way.
DeAngelo Hall said while building camaraderie can so cliché, the team is a big family.
“When you see one of your brothers on a bottom of a pile and they feel the same way that’s why there’s no hard feelings,” Hall said. “We walked off the field shoulder to shoulder with them guys but in between the lines… It’s a battle and may the best man win.”
Duke Ihenacho admitted there is a bit more animosity with the Texans.
“You know some of those guys, but at the same time, it’s a little more competitive, little more intense,” he said. “You want to represent your organization, want to represent have your brother’s back… so it’s a little more intense.”
The joint practices were a homecoming for several members of the Texans.
General Manager Rick Smith grew up in Petersburg and attended Petersburg High until his junior year when he moved with his family to Dayton, Ohio.
After a successful college career at Purdue, Smith turned his attention to coaching…winning two Super Bowl rings with the Denver Broncos as defensive back coach.
Smith, who then moved to the front office as Houston’s GM since 2006, said he hopes he is a role model for those back at home.
“Hopefully the folks here can see it and hopefully the young folks that are growing up in Petersburg or from Richmond and the Tri-City area know that whatever they want to do that there capable of doing it and if they buckle up and do well in school and do the right thing,” Smith said