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Cofield: 'I just went out and played'

Cofield: 'I just went out and played'

Barry Cofield had hoped to play against the Eagles with a slimmed-down version of the club cast that protected his broken right hand in practice all week. But as it turned out the doctors apparently weren’t comfortable with him playing with anything less that the full club so that’s what he wore on Monday night.

It wasn’t a great situation, he said, but he muddled through the game.

“I just went out and played,” he said. “Certain blocks were tougher just because of angles and things like that. That was the plan all along, to go out and play, do everything normal, play hard, run around, I feel like I did that.”

It looked like the inability to use his hand cost him on one play when he had a shot at Philly running back LeSean McCoy but couldn’t grab on to make the stop.

“I had that one missed tackle,” he said. “I'm not sure if it was McCoy. He just ran through the club. I played 50-plus snaps. I had one missed tackle. It's not ideal but I felt I was pretty effective.”

The cast was similar to this one that he wore in practice.

However, the wrap was colored burgundy to match the jersey they were wearing that night. With its size, shape, and color it resembled a football at a quick glance or out of the corner of the eye.

“People said they thought the ball was on the ground,” Cofield said when asked if people had commented on it. “It was funny to hear some of the feedback. I think I'm going to stick with the burgundy. Maybe it will throw off the receivers, make them think the ball's been deflected. It's a fashion statement, I'm going to stick with it.”

He said that he didn’t know if he still will be wearing the club against the Packers on Sunday. “It will be week to week, depending on how things go,” he said. “They are X-raying it frequently, checking out the healing process so it's day to day if not week to week.”

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Jay Gruden squashes perception that Alabama defenders don't produce in NFL

Jay Gruden squashes perception that Alabama defenders don't produce in NFL

Alabama dominates college football in a way few teams ever have. In the last two seasons, the Crimson Tide has lost just two games, winning one national title and narrowly missing a second.

The strength of 'Bama, year after year, is their defense. Nick Saban coaches it, Nick Saban knows it, and Nick Saban demands the best from his players. 

Oddly, however, a few recent Alabama defenders drafted to the NFL have not produced. Or at least their production did not match their draft status. 

It's not too hard to pick names that fit that perception. Rolando McClain. Terrence Cody. Dre Kirkpatrick. And at running back, Trent Richardson didn't help.

Still, the Redskins invested heavily in the Tide during the 2017 draft. Their top two picks played for Saban's defense last year, and Washington coach Jay Gruden does not buy any part of the perception that 'Bama products regress in the NFL.

"I don’t see any negative whatsoever with them going to Alabama," Gruden said late Friday night.

The 'Skins selected Jonathan Allen in the first round and Ryan Anderson in the second. Both guys started on the Tide's front seven, and both players dominated.

"They come there and they are well coached. Anytime you watch college football, and you watch other defenses, no disrespect, and then you flip on an Alabama game, it’s different," Gruden said. "The speed is different. They are well-coached, they are in their gaps, they play hard, they play physical, and that’s from Week 1 until the end. That has to appeal to you as a coach. They are using their hands, they are physical, they are chasing the ball, they are running to the ball."

The perception, right or wrong, has two main positions. The first is that the Alabama defense looks so good because it is full of five-star recruits. When everyone is good, or great, on the college level, it's hard to truly judge any singular player's game tape. The second is that Saban is so exhausting, so demanding of his players, they arrive to the NFL with too many reps.

For those around the NFL, both theories are laughable. Pro scouts know game tape. How else can they judge a future first rounder when he matches up against a walk-on? And for every alleged 'Bama bust, think about Ha Ha Clinton-Dix or Landon Collins or C.J. Mosley or Dont'a Hightower. 

Might some Tide players get overdrafted because of their success and high profile? That's a different conversation. What's certain is the Redskins are quite confident in both of their Alabama draft picks.

"We know they are both highly intelligent guys. They understand football, understand X’s and O’s and they both play very hard with a high motor and they are well-coached."

<<<LOOKING AT REDSKINS DRAFT PROSPECTS>>>

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Redskins draft oft-injured Auburn CB Joshua Holsey with their final pick

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Redskins draft oft-injured Auburn CB Joshua Holsey with their final pick

The Redskins haven't shied away from using draft picks on players with an injury history, and that trend continued all the way to their final pick of the draft with Auburn CB Joshua Holsey.

Holsey missed parts of the 2013 and 2015 seasons at Auburn due to torn ACLs, but rebounded with a strong season in 2016. He had 30 tackles, three interceptions and 10 passes defended in his senior season.

RELATED: REDSKINS ROLL THE DICE ON 7TH ROUND SAFETY

He was overlooked through most of the draft process due to his injury history and was snubbed at the combine. 

The seventh round is a spot to take a flier on a guy who has some traits you like, and this certainly fits the bill with the pick of Joshua Holsey. 

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