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Need to Know: Five things on RG3's offseason to-do list

Need to Know: Five things on RG3's offseason to-do list

Here is what you need to know on this Friday, February 7, 12 days before the NFL Combine.

Nickel coverage

According to Pierre Garçon, Robert Griffin III has set up a number of players-only offseason passing camps already. Here are five more things that are on his to-do list between now and the start of the season.

Take care of the knee—Griffin is now about 13 months removed from the surgical repairs to his right knee. While the healing is nearly complete he needs to be sure that he is 100 percent comfortable running and cutting on it and that it is strong enough minimize the chances of reinjuring it.

Get onto the same page with Jay Gruden—The fates of Griffin and Gruden are inexorably tied to each other. Neither one can succeed without the other.

Think before speaking to the media—Maybe he should speak to the media less but the starting QB is required to have media availability during OTAs, minicamp, and training camp. It only makes sense to set up a press conference so everyone isn’t crowded around his locker or in a scrum as he comes off the practice field. As for the other stuff, well, I don’t see there being much media demand for magazine cover stories or one-hour documentaries.

Learn to slide—Denard Span of the Nationals has offered to teach Griffin how to slide to avoid injury. He’s practically pleaded with Griffin to take him up on it. Whether it’s from Span or elsewhere or if he slides or uses some other method to protect himself when large men seeking to do him harm are in close proximity he needs to do it.

Read and react—It’s telling that after Griffin was benched after taking 25 sacks in five games, Kirk Cousins was sacked just four times in three games playing behind the same offensive line. Griffin needs to get rid of the ball quicker and that means trusting what his eyes tell him and reacting instead of thinking.

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Here’s the thing
Reserve running backs are supposed to be key contributors on special teams. Jawan Jamison was moved up from the practice squad for the last three games of the season and he was on the game day active list all three games. But he didn’t play a single play on special teams. If he can’t do that or is unwilling to do that, why is he on the roster?
Timeline

—It’s been 40 days since the Redskins played a game; it will be about 212 days until they play another one.

—Days until: NFL Combine 12; NFL Free agency starts 32; Offseason workouts start 59; NFL Draft 90

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Jonathan Allen plans to model his game after two other All-Pro defenders

Jonathan Allen plans to model his game after two other All-Pro defenders

New Redskins defensive lineman Jonathan Allen is looking to pattern his game after two All-Pro linemen. 

"I'm a very versatile player and can do anything. I love watching Geno Atkins and Aaron Donald," Washington’s first-round draft pick told reporters on a conference call.

The Redskins will be very happy if Allen can be as productive as Atkins and Donald. Atkins has played for the Bengals since the 2010 season. He has been durable, playing in 16 games in six of his seven seasons, and effective, producing 52 sacks, a good total for a defensive tackle. 

MORE REDSKINS: A COMPLETE RECAP OF ROUND 1

Donald was a first-round pick of the Rams in 2014. He was a first-team All-Pro in each of the past two seasons, recording a total of 28 sacks in his three seasons. 

Both players combine outstanding physical talent and high motors. Allen has selected two pretty good role models to follow. 

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

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Gruden: Redskins have no concerns about Allen's shoulders

Gruden: Redskins have no concerns about Allen's shoulders

Jonathan Allen was the perfect pick for the Redskins, filling a need with a player who clearly was the best on the board.

Allen’s slide from a top-five prospect to the middle of the first round is believed to be because of issues with both of his shoulders. During his time at Alabama he suffered labral tears in both of his shoulders that were surgically repaired and he also suffers from mild arthritis in both of them. That apparently scared some teams off but not the Redskins.

“We didn't have any concerns,” said coach Jay Gruden. “We talked to Dr. [James] Andrews, he gave thumbs up on him. We feel very good about the injuries.”

Then why did a top talent slide all the way back to the Redskins’ pick?

“As far as him falling to us, their were a lot of things that happened in the draft, three quarterbacks went, a couple of receivers went pretty high, a lot of offensive players went that probably not a lot of people expected,” said Gruden. “So, some of these very good defensive players fell to us and we're happy.”

Allen told reporters that the shoulders did not cause him any problems while he was playing.

“I didn’t even wear a brace for the [2016] season,” Allen said. “So, I mean, it doesn’t even affect me. Every team I talked to, shoulders were medically cleared, no problems. Probably the best I’ve felt in the last four years, to be honest.”

Alabama team doctor Lyle Cain’s assessment of Allen’s shoulders align with those of the player and Gruden.

"He's played without any problems," Cain told NFL Media last month. "This is something that a lot of offensive linemen and defensive linemen have, things guys play with their whole careers. It's just a little earlier for him because he got hurt in college."

We will see how this plays out. It’s possible that his injury problems could limit his effectiveness or cut his career short. But clearly the Redskins saw that the Allen’s talent made the injury risk a worthwhile gamble.

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.