A few quick hits to get your Wednesday morning going:--The Drew Brees contract situation is somewhat confusing. One local writer said that it would be a huge upset if the Saints and their franchise quarterback did not have a long-term deal done by Mondays deadline. But now we get Chris Mortensen reporting that Brees is threating to stay away from training camp if a deal doesnt get done. That doesnt make it sound like negotiations are going smoothly. Obviously, this situation bears watching as it could affect the Saints readiness to take on the Redskins in the season opener on Sept. 9.--Its hard to overstate how big a year this is for Fred Davis. At age 26 he has a window of about two years to take that step from being a nice player into being a very good one. If he takes a step towards that this year the Redskins will give him a long-term contract and not worry about the position for the next four or five years. If hes just OK in 2012 the Redskins could begin looking for a replacement.--Quarterbacks coach Matt LaFleur is another person under pressure in Ashburn. Along with Kyle Shanahan he is responsible for the development of the franchise, Robert Griffin III. If RG3 comes out and lights things up this year LaFleur could be in demand and up for a promotion, either in Washington or elsewhere. Should the teams most valuable asset struggle, LaFleur could be looking for a job next year.--The 53 continues today with the defensive backs. I might be one short at one of the spots but well see how things turn out. Check back later today and let me know what you think.Days until: Rookies report 5; training camp 15; preseason opener @ Bills 29; final cuts 52; Redskins @ Saints 60; home opener vs. Bengals 74
GLENDALE, AZ—The Redskins went into today’s game against the Cardinals somewhat banged up and they exit with a couple of additional injury concerns in the form of concussions.
Center Spencer Long left the game in the second quarter. Initially it was announced that he had been evaluated for a concussion but that he had been cleared. But after halftime the word came down that he had been retested and it was determined that he does have a concussion. Long has entered the concussion protocol.
Veteran John Sullivan, picked up earlier this season when Kory Lichtensteiger went on injured reserve, filled in a center the rest of the way. He is a capable fill-in but if Long is out he would be the only available center. The Redskins might have to sign a center if it looks like Long will be out of action against the Eagles.
In the fourth quarter safety Will Blackmon left the game. According to Redskins coach Jay Gruden he was being evaluated for a concussion and a stinger. His exact status is unknown. Gruden will give more information during a conference call with reporters on Monday.
GLENDALE, AZ—The Redskins had a couple of chances to stop what would eventually turn into the Cardinals’ game-clinching drive in the fourth quarter. The first one came when they went for it on fourth and one at their own 34. It was a gutsy call by Arizona coach Bruce Arians and David Johnson make him look smart by popping off a 14-yard run.
The Cards earned that one. But it looked as though they got something of a gift a few plays later when Josh Norman was flagged holding receiver Larry Fitzgerald. It was a borderline call, granting Arizona a gift third and five conversion. Two plays later Carson Palmer went in for the kill, throwing a 42-yard touchdown pass to J.J. Nelson.
On the field, Norman seemed to be none too pleased with the penalty flag. He said after the game that he thinks that Fitzgerald may have stolen a flag.
“He [Fitzgerald] was within five yards. Larry is a wily vet,” said Norman. “I'd been doing it all game, kind of . . . He breaks out and I go for the ball and the flag got thrown. We'd like to see that not happen in that situation because there was some good position, some good leverage. And a flag came out.
“It is what it is. You can't blame a call on that, blame a call on this. It's whatever, man.”
Norman is right. The Redskins blew plenty of chances to take control of the game and the blame can be spread around on both sides of the ball. But the flag will loom large as the Redskins try to shake off this loss and get ready for the Eagles next week.