That Other Team from Texas
By: Bernie Marshall
Category: Washington Redskins News
The coaching staffs are very familiar with one another, Texans coach Gary Kubiak was a quarterback for the Denver Broncos when Mike Shanahan served as the team’s offensive coordinator from 1985-87. After taking the Broncos’ head coaching position in 1995, Shanahan hired Kubiak as his offensive coordinator. Redskins offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan spent the last four seasons with the Texans, including the last two as their offensive coordinator. He was their play caller last year. Redskins quarterbacks coach, Matt LaFleur, was an offensive assistant with Houston from 2008-2009. Assistant special teams coach Richard Hightower, was a Texans' assistant from 2006-08. Houston offensive coordinator Rick Dennison, was on Shanahan’s staff in Denver for all 14 years of his tenure. Defensive coordinator Frank Bush was there with Shanahan from 1995-2003. Both teams run a variation of the offense Mike Shanahan ran in Denver.
The Ongoing Albert Haynesworth Saga:
The much maligned defensive lineman made his first comments in 16 days after the Washington Redskins posted a victory in their home opener Sunday night. After constant “no comments” whenever approached by the media, due to rampant rumors (all of which originated from “un-named team sources” and “sources with knowledge of the situation”), of his impending trade, benching, deactivation and his out right release, Albert Haynesworth spoke about his performance as the backup to starting nose tackle Ma'ake Kemoeatu,when he stated, "I played OK, I made a few tackles and did what I was supposed to do. It's all right. I will get used to (playing the nose). Every time we go out and practice, I feel more comfortable with the situation." Haynesworth also talked about the play of LB Brian Orakpo saying “They'd been holding Brian all game, he was killing them on the pass rush. If they didn't hold him, he was going to get a sack." Asked if too much was being made of the battle of wills between him and head coach Mike Shanahan over the defense and his role in it, Haynesworth said, "Probably, I'm here to play football and that's what I'm trying to do." when asked if he wanted to be traded back to the Tennessee Titans Haynesworth said, "It's not my decision. I'm just a player."
Prior to his most recent comments to the press Haynesworth had been quoted as not wanting anything to do with the Washington Redskins new 3-4 defense and he was refusing to learn the scheme; however he spoke about playing in the scheme after week one of the pre-season and said. “It's different, but I like it. It's something I've got to get used to, but other than that, it's going to be a good defense. They allow me to pass rush and everything like that, which is really important to me." This has to be the least used quote of the off-season.
Like Haynesworth, head coach Mike Shanahan has apparently had enough of the rumormongers in the DC press corps., and has advised those that cover the Washington Redskins that they are now prohibited from the publication of information (rumors) which "do not have a discernible source". Haynesworth was limited in practice Wednesday with an ankle injury, but Coach Mike Shanahan did not mention the injury in his post-practice remarks.
A Week of First:
Sunday's season opener was Mike Shanahan's first game as the Redskins head coach after being out of football and the NFL last season, but Sunday night's victory had other first, like linebacker Andre Carter making three tackles in his first game at linebacker since 2005 when he was with San Francisco, (Carter had started at right defensive end for the Redskins over the past four seasons. Nose tackle Ma'ake Kemoeatu had one tackle in his first NFL game since 2008, after he missed the 2009 season with a torn Achilles. Offensive tackle Jammal Brown started in his Redskins debut, it was his first NFL game since the 2008 season because he missed the 2009 season following sports hernia and hip surgeries, and defensive end Adam Carriker Redskins debut was his first NFL action since 2008 after he missed the 2009 season following shoulder surgery. Most importantly it was the first win by the Washington Redskins against a division opponent since the 2008 season due to the Redskins being swept by all three division rivals last season. New starting QB, Donovan McNabb, is the first player since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger to play three straight games against the same team. McNabb was the QB for the Philadelphia Eagles last season and faced last week's opponent in Philadelphia's season finale and the NFC wild card playoff game last season.
Quotes and Notes:
-- The Redskins passing game is still a work in progress, as wide receiver Santana Moss, and tight end Chris Cooley combined for twelve catches (six each) for 157 yards, but the rest of the Redskins pass catchers added just fourteen yards on three catches.
-- RB Clinton Portis final carry went for eighteen yards up the middle and capped a eighteen carry, 63 yard night, and he now stands just 812 yards shy of Hall of Famer John Riggins' franchise record. Portis now has 6,660 rushing yards during his Redskins career
-- “They kept making big plays, moving down the field and the end, we hunkered down, got to the quarterback, got the holding call and we ran off the field, man. Just moving on to the next, I don’t even care that it wasn’t a sack. It was what we needed to get off the field. I’ll take it any way we get it. This is a huge step for us, coming from a 4-12 year last year. New mindset, new coach, and we follow him. We’re 1-0, now get ready for the Texans.” --- LB Brian Orakpo on playing what is becoming known as ‘Shanahan Football.’
-- In his first start, at strong safety since his rookie year, 2007, (when he lined up opposite the late free safety Sean Taylor), LaRon Landry had a game-leading and career-high eighteen tackles, thirteen unassisted.... "I wish I could have got 30, this defense enables me to fly around, read my keys. I can just play ball instead of sitting back in the middle of the field trying to get action." said Landry who needed an IV at halftime and was prone on the field a couple of times from exhaustion.
-- It's totally different around here, We have coaches that understand things, have your back, and want the best for you. We're playing more defenses and getting an opportunity to make plays. I could be mad about the contract, but I'm not worried about that because I'm happy about all the other stuff that's going on. After last season, I thought I'd be out of here." --- Sixth year Cornerback Carlos Rogers on the difference between playing for former defensive coordinator Greg Blache and current defensive coordinator Jim Haslett.
-- Thursday was the day that RB Clinton Portis was to explain his inflammatory comments about women reporters made earlier in the week. Asked about his remarks at his weekly media availability, Portis stood at his locker holding a spiral notebook. He was asked “Do you wish you'd never said it?” ...he held up the notebook with a messages that read "NO COMMENT", then defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth appeared and put a piece of black athletic tape on Portis' mouth... “What about the game coming up on Sunday?”... Portis flipped the notebook to another page, it read "THANKS FOR COMING." Haynesworth put a second piece of tape on Portis' mouth. The final question was Did you make those signs? Portis responded by turning to two more pages: "GOD BLESS YOU" and then "HAVE A GOOD DAY." Two more pieces of tape from Haynesworth.
-- “Well, No. 1, hopefully Shanahan football will be scoring a few more points to start with, I think if you take a look at the half, and take a look at the game, if you take a look at Orakpo rushing the passer in that all-out effort on the last play that drew the holding call, That type of effort, and if you look at D-Hall and his play, trying to strip the ball, things we practice. It just showed me guys are willing to play hard for 60 minutes, it gives you a chance to win. And when you go hard 60 minutes, and you take a look at the last play of the half and last play of the game, that’s what separates teams.” --- Coach Shanahan explaining “Shanahan Football
Complete Tale of the Tapes:
Total Offense: Washington is ranked 24th with 250.0 yards per game and Houston ranks 9th with 355.0 ypg.
Rushing Offense: Washington is ranked 17th with 89.0 yards per game and Houston ranks 1st with 257.0 ypg.
Passing Offense: Washington is ranked 22nd with 161.0 yards per game and Houston ranks 28th with 98.0 ypg.
Total Defense: Washington is ranked 25th giving up 380.0 yards per game and Houston ranks 27th with 463.0 ypg.
Rushing Defense: Washington is ranked 15th giving up 103.0 yards per game and Houston ranks 2nd with 44.0 ypg.
Passing Defense: Washington is ranked 25th giving up 277.0 yards per game and Houston ranks 28th with 419.0 ypg.
Under NFL rules, all 32 teams must release injury reports on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday prior to Sunday's games. Only on Friday are the designations of Out, Doubtful, Questionable and Probable assigned to players. Therefore these designations are subjected to change.
RB Clinton Portis (Wrist) is listed as Probable
Portis was listed on the injury report but fully participated in practice on Thursday and is expected to play Sunday. Portis was listed on the Injury Report last week for his ankle
DB Kareem Moore (knee) is Questionable
Moore was inactive for Sunday's season opener as he continues to recover from arthroscopic surgery on his sprained right MCL, Thursday's was the first practice that he wore pads. and remains questionable for Week 2 against the Texans.
DL Albert Haynesworth (Ankle ) is Probable
Haynesworth was limited in practice on Wednesday and Thursday, he didn’t appear hampered by an injury during Sunday’s win and is expected to play on Sunday
LB Perry Riley (Foot) is Questionable
Riley missed Sunday's season opener and was limited in practice this week. He remains questionable for Week 2 against the Texans.
The following players are done for the 2010 season:
WR Malcolm Kelly (Hamstring)
Kelly was been placed on the injured reserve list and will miss the entire 2010 season after pulling his left hamstring. He did not take part in the 2010 preseason activities.
WR Mike Furrey (Concussion)
Furrey was placed on the injured reserve, putting an end to his season. Furrey has a history of concussion problems and that could force the veteran to consider retirement.
OL Mike Williams (Non-Football Injury)
Williams was placed on the reserve/non-football injury list after doctors found blood clots near his heart. Williams was expected to compete for the starting right guard spot, instead he will miss the entire season
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