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Need to Know: Shanahan says 'it's time to get away'

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Need to Know: Shanahan says 'it's time to get away'

Here is what you need to know on this Wednesday, October 2, 12 days before the Redskins visit the Cowboys on Sunday night.

Nickel coverage

Five key updates from Mike Shanahan just before the Redskins took off for their bye week.

1. On the condition of Jarvis Jenkins and Rob Jackson, both back from drug-related suspensions:

“They ran well afterwards – we didn’t have a big workout today, but what we did do is we got about 25-30 plays in and then after that we ran them pretty good and they looked in good shape.”

2. Injury updates on Chris Neild and Logan Paulsen:

Paulsen: “I don’t know for sure, but he’ll get treatment all this week and we’ll find out more next Monday, but hopefully he’ll be back.” Neild: “He’s quite sore. You could tell with him just walking out there today. Again, with the week recovery time, I’m hoping he’s ready to go as well.”

3. On the balancing time to get away with thinking about football during the bye (note: the CBA mandates that players get 5 days off during the bye week):

“The thing that you’re hoping is that they run a couple of times, and we emphasize that to our players. The man upstairs is the only guy watching, but we’re hoping they get two good workouts in so we don’t lose any conditioning. It is time to get away.”

4. Talking about his confidence in his team:

“Number one, I feel very good about our football team. We’re still 1-3; 2-2 is leading the division. So it gives us a chance after the bye week, especially playing Dallas, to kind of get started all over again – play our best football after the bye week, and hopefully we can do that.”

5. Shanahan talks about why Fred Davis played only six snaps during the Raiders game:

“He didn’t practice until Friday, so it had a lot to do with the ankle. We weren’t really positive he was going to dress for the game. But with [tight end] Jordan [Reed] going down and having a couple other players go down, we thought Fred was a good insurance policy. And he stepped in there and did a good job when he was asked to play.”


Stat of the day

—This is the earliest bye the Redskins have had since 2005, when it came in Week 3. The league no longer schedules byes prior to Week 4.

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Timeline
—Days until: Redskins @ Cowboys 11; Bears @ Redskins 18; Redskins @ Broncos 25

—The Redskins are on their bye, no availability this week.
Redskins have to make the best of their situation

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Redskins plan to 'spy' Cardinals' David Johnson with rookie Su'a Cravens, per source

Redskins plan to 'spy' Cardinals' David Johnson with rookie Su'a Cravens, per source

Facing one of the NFL's best running backs in Arizona's David Johnson, the Redskins plan to use rookie linebacker Su'a Cravens as a spy in nickel coverage to slow down the Cardinals' threat, per a source close to the team.

Johnson ranks third in the NFL with 921 rushing yards, but it's the variety of ways the Arizona offense uses their second-year running back that makes him so difficult to handle for opposing defenses. Johnson also has 55 catches for 613 yards, and that's just through 11 games.

Cravens comes into the game with momentum as perhaps the Redskins most dynamic defensive threat. With size to play linebacker and enough speed to play coverage, the 6-foot-1, 220 lbs. rookie out of USC will be put in a tough position covering Johnson. The reality of his assignment is to try and contain Johnson as the Cardinals offense is so reliant on the runner that he will get a number of chances.

In their last two games, Johnson has gone for more than 150 total yards in each contest and scored multiple touchdowns. For his part, Cravens has proved a playmaker in his rookie season. To go with 29 tackles in nine games, his stat sheet has sacks and an interception listed.

Getting to Carson Palmer is the best path for the Redskins defense - especially considering the Cardinals' offensive line woes - but using Cravens to try and limit Johnson is a smart course of action for the 'Skins.

One member of the Washington defense explained that Johnson is "going to make plays" but that the key is to limit the damage. If the running back catches a ball out of the backfield, Joe Barry's defense will be focused on making a stop after a five-yard gain, instead of a 20-yard gain.

Want more Redskins? Check out @JPFinlayCSN for live updates or click here for the #RedskinsTalk Podcast on iTunes, here for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!

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Redskins vs. Cardinals inactives: Reed out as expected

Redskins vs. Cardinals inactives: Reed out as expected

GLENDALE, AZ—As expected, the Redskins will be without star tight end Jordan Reed today against the Cardinals.

He is inactive due to a third-degree AC joint sprain in his left shoulder.

Reed gutted it out and played the second half on Thanksgiving Day in Dallas after being injured in the first but during the week he didn’t practice at all couldn’t regain the range of motion needed to play today.

Coach Jay Gruden said on Friday that the team is planning on having Reed play next week against the Eagles.

For this week, Vernon Davis will step into the starting role.

Also inactive is reserve defensive lineman Anthony Lanier, who was kicked in the lower leg in Dallas. Gruden said that the swelling was still too severe for him to be able to play.

LIVE BLOG: WEEK 13 REDSKINS VS. CARDINALS

The Redskins’ other inactive players today:

  • QB Nate Sudfeld
  • DL AJ Francis
  • RB Matt Jones
  • WR Rashad Ross
  • DB Dashaun Phillips