When Josh Wilson signed with the Redskins late last July, the cornerback had roughly two weeks to familiarize himself with teams defensive scheme before the preseason opener.Wilson eventually got up to speed, but it took weeks, if not months, before he was completely comfortable starting on the right side opposite DeAngelo Hall.Familiarity, though, wont be an issue in 2012 and thats the primary reason the DeMatha and University of Maryland product expects to have a breakout season.Its going to be night and day, Wilson said Thursday. Being able have an offseason, a year under my belt in this scheme, Im going to be able to have an understanding, make calls for myself. I had to learn on the fly last season, so it was definitely tough.In 16 games, Wilson recorded 62 tackles (48 solo), two interceptions and defended 15 passes. Both of the 27-year-olds interceptions came in December as he spent less time focused on his responsibilities within defensive coordinator Jim Hasletts scheme and more time reading the opposing offense.I wont be reacting and figuring out what I have to do first and then figuring out how the offense is trying to attack me, Wilson said. Now, I come out of the huddle knowing where the weaknesses are, where my strength is, where my help is, and what I need to protect myself. By the time the offense gets to the line, Im already trying to figure out what theyre trying to do.Coach Mike Shanahan said hes noticed Wilsons growing confidence.It doesnt matter what type of formation, Shanahan said. You dont have to think. You can just react, and he has been able to do that.Wilson expects big things from himself. But he also knows that his success is inextricably linked to the play outside linebackers Brian Orakpo and Ryan Kerrigan and, more specifically, their ability to harass opposing quarterbacks.Its everything, Wilson said. When you have a good pass rush thats coming every down, with Rak and and Ryan coming off that edge, I know that quarterback has to get the ball out of his hand. He cant double-pump it or give me a triple move. If he does that, its a sack.Thats very comforting for a defensive back, he added. Because if I can hold my guy for five or six seconds, its over, that play is dead.Away from the field, Wilsons comfort level has also increased. Not only is he near his old stomping grounds, hes playing in the same city in consecutive years for the first time since suiting up for the Seahawks from 2007 - 2009. He played one season for the Ravens before joining the Redskins, the team he grew up cheering in the suburbs of Washington.Its definitely a little more comfortable, Wilson said before making a good-natured crack about the expense of purchasing tickets for games at FedEx Field. But it costs a lot on game day.Seriously, though, Wilson called it a blessing to be surrounded by friends and family on a daily basis. But, he quickly added, its almost as comforting to look at a familiar playbook each day.It says the same thing it said last year, he said with a grin.
Josh Norman is a man of many talents — at least on the football field, and in the friendliest possible way, he was reminded of that this weekend during a charity basketball game.
Opposite of the defensive nightmare Norman can be for receivers, the New York Knicks' Kyle O’Quinn had a little fun with the Redskins cornerback and the 10-inch height difference they share during the during Bam Bam’s Spring Jam at the Ted Constant Convocation Center in Norfolk, Virginia.
O'Quinn got the ball and went up for a particularly easy dunk as Norman jumped and tried to swat the ball away but his effort was futile.
While this was all in good fun, Norman should probably stick to football.
Former Virginia Tech defenseive back and current Seattle Seahawk Kam Chancellor's foundation is behind the charity game, which also included Redskins' Lynden Trail, Marshawn Lynch, Michael Bennett and Antoine Bethea.
On Memorial Day, people all over the United States stop to reflect on the freedoms provided for by the military. Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins is no different.
"So grateful for living in this country and understanding that that came at a price and I just want to say thank you," Cousins said.
Speaking after an OTA session last week with military members in attendance, Cousins explained that he appreciates the added sense of history and obligation that comes from living in and around D.C.
"It’s a good reminder why it’s such a benefit to play here in Washington. It just feels like it’s that much more real with Andrews Air Force Base here and so many soldiers here. There’s something special about playing for the city of Washington, D.C. and driving 30 minutes into the city and going by the White House and the Pentagon and the monuments."
The Redskins hosted military members from multiple branches at their OTAs, and afterward, Cousins and a number of other players signed autographs.
"You say ‘Man, I want to give these soldiers, these fans something to cheer about and make them excited and bring this city together.' Hopefully winning football games can do that. What a great thing. That’s the vision we’re chasing," the Redskins passer said. "Hopefully we can get it done this season."
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