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Did the Redskins rush RG3 back?

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Did the Redskins rush RG3 back?

Did the Redskins bring back Robert Griffin III too soon?

Mike Shanahan has noted on a few occasions, most recently during the Redskins’ OTAs in June, that the usual recovery time for an injury such as the one his quarterback suffered is seven to nine months. When Griffin said that he thought that being ready for training camp was “without a doubt” a realistic goal, Shanahan was quick to apply the brakes.

“From the beginning they have talked about the recovery time being anywhere from seven months to nine months,” said Shanahan. “I think August 9 is seven months, and so we will just have to wait and see.”

The Redskins will start training camp this Thursday, July 25. That’s two weeks before August 9.

When asked in June about getting Griffin back on the field, Shanahan said, ““I am going to sit back and talk to the doctors and see what they say, how they feel and kind of go from there.”

According to media reports, Dr. James Andrews conducted a couple of examinations of Griffin’s knee last week after the quarterback returned from his honeymoon, Andrews gave the green light for the Redskins to clear him. After doing some quarterback-specific drills on Monday, the decision was made to let him practice, at least on a limited basis.

The Redskins were under fire as many believed that Griffin was brought back from his Week 14 knee injury took soon and, especially, that Shanahan should have taken Griffin out of the Seattle playoff game before his knee went from bad to much, much worse. The organization has every incentive to be cautious.

So is it fair to say that they are rushing him back this time? We simply don’t know yet. There are plenty of pros and cons.

It is possible that Griffin could benefit from some additional time off. Then again, you don’t want him to get rusty being unable to even play catch with teammates, which would have been the case if he had started on PUP. If he started training camp on PUP, which many advocated as the best course,

They have seven weeks from today to get ready for the opener against the Eagles and shaving a few weeks off of that wouldn’t necessarily lead to a woefully unprepared RG3 taking the field on national TV. And Adrian Peterson spent two weeks on PUP last year and they season worked out for him just fine.

Accurate on both points, but Griffin needs all the work he can get. Training camp time is much more valuable to a second-year quarterback than it is to a running back going into his sixth season as Peterson was last year.

In the end, it comes down to a risk-reward analysis. There will be risk in putting Griffin on the field for practice on Thursday. There also would be risk if they waited two or three weeks or two or three months before having him step on the field. Football is a dangerous game. It’s even more dangerous to after you have had the same knee reconstructed twice.

All they can do now that he has been medically cleared is put him out there and, as Shanahan said, “wait and see”.

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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. Terrance 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 Haha Clinton-Dox 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 focus on defense through three rounds in the NFL Draft

Redskins focus on defense through three rounds in the NFL Draft

Coming into the offseason, there was plenty of talk coming from the Redskins organization that the team needed to upgrade the defense. Those who have been following the team for a while have heard this for many years now. However, usually the talk is just that, with more draft capital and free agency money going to the offense year in and year out.

But this year things are different.

The lion’s share of free agent spending went to the defense. They added linemen Terrell McClain and Stacy McGee, linebacker Zach Brown, and safety D.J. Swearinger. Now they have started off their draft with a laser focus in the defensive side of the ball.

RELATED: Redskins add cornerback with first round talent, but injuries pushed him to the third round

In the first round, they were delighted to take Jonathan Allen, the top-rated defensive lineman on their board. In the second round they went with outside linebacker Ryan Anderson, a teammate of Allen’s at Alabama. Then in the third round the pick was cornerback Fabian Moreau out of UCLA.

It’s been 20 years since the Redskins have gone so heavy with defensive picks at the top of the draft. Not since 1997 have they taken defensive players in the first three rounds of the draft. That year they took DE Kenard Lang, LB Greg Jones, and LB Derek Smith in rounds one, two, and three, respectively.

We will see how much impact the three draft picks have on the defense and, as Redskins fans have learned over the years, an influx of free agents on defense doesn’t guarantee improvement on that side of the ball.

But at least the Redskins organization is putting its money, and its draft picks, where its mouth is and that has be considered a positive development.

MORE REDSKINS: Redskins make it two Alabama defenders in the 2017 draft class so far

Stay up to date on the Redskins! Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page Facebook.com/TandlerCSN and follow him on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.