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LIVE Redskins practice report—Day 5

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LIVE Redskins practice report—Day 5

I'll start rolling with the training camp observations just as soon as things get going. Check back and refresh often to get updates as they happen.

--It's overcast right now but the sun had been popping in and out. It looked for a while that this practice might be in danger of being washed out with thunderstorms but so far, so good.

The first move is important on the DL. #Redskins

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--Su'a Cravens is not participating today due to a hamstring injury. They are being cautious but this is going to set back his learning curve.

--Chris Thompson just ran a nice little pop up the middle. Shawn Lauvao's is in with the first team at left guard. Look for him and Spencer Long to share the first team reps with Kouandjio getting most of the second-team work.

--The defenders are trying hard to rip the ball out of the hands of all of the running backs, not just Matt Jones. So far I have not yet seen them be successful.

--Kendall Fuller just got some pointers from defensive backs assistant Aubrey Pleasant after Rashad Ross caught an intermediate pass over the middle.

--Dashaun Phillips sped over and knocked away a sideline pass intended for DeSean Janckson. Not sure if Jackson had enough room to make the catch inbounds anyway but nice play by Phillips.

--Chris Thompson is fast. He just turned on the jets and spend around right end after taking a handoff.

--The Redskins are practicing onside kicks. I hope that the "hands" team they have in isn't the one they would use in a game situation. It decidedly lacks hands, with most of the players on it being defensive linemen and linebackers.

--They now have a better hands team in. Jamison Crowder has made a couple of diving catches kicks that were popped up in the air. They both worked but it's a rather dangerous maneuver. If you don't get the handle the chances of the other team recovering are pretty good.

--Good pass in seven on seven work from McCoy to rookie WR Maurice Harris. The receiver split two defenders in the end zone and McCoy fired a strike.

--In 11 on 11 in the red zone, Cousins threw a little swing pass to Jackson, who scampered in for the score. Jackson did not score a touchdown from a play from the red zone last year.

--Preston Smith is not just a pass rusher. He just got in the backfield and disrupted a play with Jones going up the middle before it ever got started.

--Ryan Grant made a diving attempt to catch a pass in the end zone. There are NFL referees here today and they called it incomplete after conferring. It looked like a catch from where I was sitting and Jay Gruden thought so, too. He went up to the two officials and pleaded his case. After being turned down, Gruden looked at the crowd on the sideline, smiles and said, "Hey, they need practice, too."

--Will Compton stayed with Crowder all the way down the field on a Couins pass deep down the middle. Crowder may have had to slow up a big as he tracked the ball through the air but still impressive work by Compton, who drew praise from the coaches.

--There have been a lot of yellow flags on the field during this 11 on 11 session. They're getting a bit ragged it appears.

--On another try, Crowder got a couple of steps on the inside linebacker--this time it was Tarrance Garvin--and Cousins hit him in stride with the bomb.

--The offense was moving in a two-minute drill until Compton tipped a Cousins pass and Bashaud Breeland came away with the diving interception.

That's it from Richmond today, thanks for coming by. There won't be a live blog during the special teams practice so we'll see you again on Thursday.

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Redskins RB Thompson still nervous for impending cut down day

Redskins RB Thompson still nervous for impending cut down day

You would think that after spending two years as the team’s third-down back, playing more snaps than any other running back last season, and getting a second-round restricted free agent tender that will pay him $2.7 million this year, Chris Thompson might feel comfortable as the Redskins start up the final phase of their preseason program.

But Thompson says that he is as nervous about making the team as he was when he was a fifth-round in 2013.

“Even after the last preseason game when you guys talk to me I’m going to still be nervous when that time comes around because I never forget that feeling,” he told reporters on Monday prior to the Redskins charity golf tournament at Army-Navy Country Club.

“For me, I’ve just got to come out here and work every day to try to secure my job.”

ROSTER BATTLES: Left guard | Tight end Nickel cornerback  | Inside linebacker | Running back

The approach has worked for him in the past. He struggled with injuries his first two years in the league, playing a total of just six games. In 2015 he found his niche as the third-down back and he hasn’t given it up.

In fact, he may get more opportunities on first and second downs.

“I have a feeling that I might get a little more this year,” he said. “He [coach Jay Gruden] knows that I’m healthy and I can stay healthy. I think that was one of his biggest concerns, that I can handle the load. I think I’ll get a lot more opportunities.”

Rob Kelley is expected to be the starter and fourth-round pick Samaje Perine should get a significant number of carries. If Gruden plans on Thompson getting more work on the ground, that likely means that the Redskins anticipate running the ball more ofent than they did in 2016, when they were 27th in the NFL with 379 rushing attempts.

Health is key for Thompson. He not only played in all 16 games for the first time in his career last year, he came out of the season in good health. Not having the need to rehab is allowing Thompson to work on refining his game.

“[Being healthy] helps me to get away and focus on the little things that I need to work on,” he said. “Having a full offseason, being able to get away, I’ve been able to focus on those things. Just like my quickness, my route running. I know my route running is big for me to make it in this league so I work on that. . . that was my main goal.”

Thompson’s work ethic and his mindset where he takes nothing for granted have served him well. He will be an unrestricted free agent in 2018 and if he continues to produce he will be setting himself up for a nice payday. 

RELATED: OFFSEASON NFL POWER RANKINGS

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RB Matt Jones reportedly not part of Redskins' 2017 plans

RB Matt Jones reportedly not part of Redskins' 2017 plans

Matt Jones entered the 2016 season as the Redskins undisputed starter at running back.

That lasted seven games.

By Week 8, Jones landed on the inactive list, and he never took another snap all year.

With OTAs beginning for the 2017 season, it looks like Jones might not play with the team. 

NFL POWER RANKINGS: WHO GOT BETTER AFTER THE DRAFT?

In April at the NFL Draft, reports surfaced that Washington was trying to trade Jones.

Weeks before that, at the NFL Owner's Meetings in Arizona, Redskins head coach Jay Gruden had to be reminded that Jones was still on the roster as the coach talked about the running back situation for this fall.

Robert Kelley surpassed Jones as the top running back on the team last season with Chris Thompson secure in his third down back role. 

Mack Brown even moved past Jones on the depth chart. When the Redskins drafted Samaje Perine in the fourth round, that signaled even bigger trouble for Jones' roster situation.

The Redskins will likely only keep four running backs this fall, and with Kelley, Perine, Thompson and Brown, it sure seems like Jones is the odd man out.

It's remarkable considering Jones has size, speed and an NFL resume that has three 100-yard games on it in just 20 games. The Redskins spent a third-round pick on Jones in 2015, and he largely ousted fan favorite Alfred Morris from the RB1 role as a rookie. 

Life comes at you quick in the NFL.

Jones is a clear example of that. 

Want more Redskins? Click here to follow JP on Facebook and check out @JPFinlayCSN for live updates via Twitter! Click here for the #RedskinsTalk on Apple Podcasts, here for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!

ROSTER BATTLES: Left guard | Tight end Nickel cornerback  | Inside linebacker | Running back