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Davis' injury opens door for Cooley


Davis' injury opens door for Cooley

Update 10:30 am: Chick Hernandez of Comcast SportsNet has reported that Cooley has passed his physical and is officially a member of the Redskins. 

Earlier this month, free agent Chris Cooley said he was content with his post-football life but quickly added that he would entertained an offer from the Redskins if his former team gave him a call.

That call came yesterday.

With Fred Davis sidelined for the season after suffering a torn Achilles’ tendon in Sunday’s loss to the Giants, the Redskins intend to re-sign the tight end, according to an NFL source. The deal is pending Cooley passing a physical, which is expected to be conducted Monday.

Cooley, a former fan favorite in Washington, has remained in Northern Virginia after being released in training camp and has done some broadcast work.

Although he's been out of the game for two months, Cooley could be a viable alternative to Davis, who entered Sunday’s game as the Redskins’ leading receiver.

Cooley was tapped for two Pro Bowls during his eight-season career with the Redskins. He has 428 career receptions for 4,703 yards, but was slowed last season by a litany of injuries, suiting up for only five games and finishing the 2011 campaign with eight receptions for 65 yards.   

When Cooley was released in August, Coach Mike Shanahan left the door open to bringing back the 30-year-old veteran, whom Shanahan said was interested in catching on with another team as a starter. The Redskins, meantime, had committed to Davis as the starter and Logan Paulsen and Niles Paul as the other tight ends.

Cooley resisted signing with another team – and now it appears he’ll get the opportunity he really wanted all along.

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How the Redskins plan to stop A.J. Green if Josh Norman can't play

How the Redskins plan to stop A.J. Green if Josh Norman can't play

The Redskins may be forced to cover one of the best receivers in the NFL without one of the best corners in the NFL.

Coach Jay Gruden is very familiar with the receiver, the Bengals’ A.J. Green. Cincinnati drafted Green in the first round in 2011, Gruden’s first year as the offensive coordinator there. In three seasons with Gruden, Green averaged 87 receptions, 1,278 yards, and 10 touchdowns.

Green has done quite well in the wake of Gruden’s departure in 2014 to become the Redskins’ head coach. He is on pace for a career season, with 50 receptions for 775 yards through seven games. Stopping the Bengals offense means stopping, or at least slowing down, No. 18.

“A.J. is a different animal,” said Gruden. “You know, he is 6-foot-3-and-a-half, 6-foot-4. He’s very strong, and he’s got the ball tracking ability unlike anybody we’ve ever seen.”

The Redskins have just the guy to slow Green down under contract but Josh Norman’s status for the game is up in the air as he is in the NFL concussion protocol. The All-Pro cornerback will visit an independent neurologist later today. He may get clearance to make the trip to London with the team. But even if he does a setback of some sort could keep him out of the game.


If Norman can’t play, the Redskins will play a mix of coverages.

“A.J. has been pretty effective against just about any corner he’s ever gone against,” said Gruden.” And you have to do different things against him. You know, if you think we’re going to play Cover 0 with man-to-man the whole time, you’re going be really mistaken.

“We’re going to have to change up the coverages, figure out ways to beat him up a little bit at the line of scrimmage, and play a safety over the top from time to time, play a third, play somebody underneath him, and then play some man-to-man. We’re going to have to play some man-to-man eventually, whether it’s [Quinton] Dunbar, whether it’s [Bashaud] Breeland, [Greg] Toler, whoever it is if Norman doesn’t go.”

It sound like the Redskins are going to take a “kitchen sink” approach to covering Green or perhaps they haven’t yet figured out how to handle him.

Green is the best receiver the Redskins have faced since taking on Antonio Brown of the Steelers in the season opener. They had all offseason to try to figure out how to handle him and they had Norman but Brown still caught eight passes for 126 yards and two touchdowns. So maybe they have to try to figure out how to win even if Green goes off.

And this season’s results show that’s possible. The Bengals are 3-4 despite Green’s gaudy stats. So teams are figuring out some way to mitigate the damage that the star receiver inflicts on a regular basis.  

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Virginia and Idaho really love Ryan Kerrigan, apparently

Virginia and Idaho really love Ryan Kerrigan, apparently

Besides the fact that both have an "i" and an "a" in their names, there's not much in common on the surface between Idaho and Virginia. Thanks to a report from DicksSportingGoods.com, though, the two states now share another similarity: A passion for Ryan Kerrigan.

Since the 2016 NFL Draft, Kerrigan's jersey tops the list of most popular in both states. Looking at Virginia, at least — where Washington's headquarters and training camp facility are located — that makes sense.

But Idaho? The defender wasn't born there, and he didn't play college football there. Perhaps (and this is a giant perhaps) it's because there are a lot of potatoes in Idaho, and potatoes go in sacks, and Kerrigan enjoys sacks, too. Until further explanation, that's the reasoning. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.

Other facts revealed in the report: People in Florida are dumb enough to buy a Ryan Tannehill jersey, those who live in Alaska are devout Julio Jones supporters (which is way more perplexing than the Idaho-Kerrigan love affair) and Hawaii should be punished, because the most popular uniform there is Seattle's obnoxious 12th fan jersey.

Here's the full graphic:

(H/T to Redskins.com)