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Potential Camp Phenom: Robert Henson

Potential Camp Phenom: Robert Henson

A camp phenom, as discussed in an earlier post, is a player who creates a buzz in training camp. He is generally a rookie who was drafted late in the second day or not at all. Or perhaps it is a guy who has bounced around a few training camps looking for a chance.

Whoever he is, he starts to get noticed. At first he is completely anonymous. At some point in the first few days of training camp he makes a great catch or a loud hit. Then the head coach, and his unit's coordinator and position coach start to mention him by name. The reporters, always looking for a fresh angle, run stories on this newfound talent. Fans at training camp make sure to spot the phenom and trace his every move. Then the preseason comes around and the phenom makes some plays. Sure, they're mostly against future truck drivers but that's irrelevant in the life span of the phenom. Half to three quarters of the fan base is convinced that he is a future star.

Sometimes, as with Larry Brown, the phenom justifies they hype and goes on to a long and successful NFL career. More often than not, through, the flaws in the phenom's game that caused him to go undrafted or to have difficulty latching on to a team catch up with him and he wind up getting cut. His legion of supporters swear that the decision will come back to haunt the team for years to come.

Over the next few day's we'll look at some of the candidates to be this year's Marcus Mason (sorry, you only can be a phenom for one preseason) or Justin Skaggs. And please note that I'm not predicting that any of these players will end up being released like Mason, Skaggs, and Babe Laufenberg did at the end of their respective phenomenal summers.

Robert Henson may have been drafted a shade too high to be considered phenom material but out of this year's second-day selections he has the best shot. The former TCU linebacker has the speed to make spectacular plays. Henson has been learning all three linebacker spots so he will have plenty of opportunity to show his stuff.

On top of all of that, the guy is a pretty good football player. He was a starter on a TCU defense that was ranked in the top 10 nationally. He's a special teams demon, always a good attribute for a phenom.

The more I look at him the more I wonder why he lasted until the fifth round. I think that by the middle of August many others will be wondering the same thing.

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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 Live Updates: Score, stats, highlights, analysis, video

Redskins vs. Cardinals Live Updates: Score, stats, highlights, analysis, video

The Redskins and Cardinals highlight the Week 13 schedule with a showdown in the desert with heavy NFL playoff implications on the line.

If the Redskins (6-5-1) can score a victory over the Cardinals (4-6-1), the team can move closer to solidifying one of the top two Wild Card spots in the NFC playoff race.

Depite the Redskins' difficult Week 12 loss to the Cowboys, Kirk Cousins is playing the best football of his career as of late, and earned the NFC Player of the Month honors for his efforts.

While running back Robert Kelley did have a slip-up against the Cowboys, the team's run game still looks vastly improved from the early season, which allows the passing game to thrive even more. Jamison Crowder continues to impress, and although Jordan Reed will miss the Cardinals game with an injury, Vernon Daivs has proven to be an excellent option for Cousins.

The most entertaining matchup of Week 13 might be Redskins DB Josh Norman vs. Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald, but the most important matchup will undoubtedly be the Redskins defensive line vs. Cardinals RB David Johnson. 

RELATED: NFL PLAYOFF SCENARIOS HEADING INTO WEEK 13

Johnson trails just DeMarco Murray and Ezekiel Elliott -- who finished with 83 yards and one TD in Week 12 -- in total rushing yards with 920 and trails just Elliott and Legarrett Blount in rushing touchdowns with 10. The Redskins rank 25th in rushing defense, and have given up an average of 108 rushing yards in their last five games.

Redskins vs. Cardinals kicks off at 4:00 p.m. ET on Sunday, Dec. 4 on FOX. Redskins Kickoff gets things started at 3:00 p.m. ET on CSN Mid-Atlantic. (Channel Finder)

CSN is providing all the live updates, stats, scores, highlights, videos and analysis from Redskins vs. Cardinals. Got a comment on the game? Be sure to let us know in the comment section and join Santana Moss and Sebastian Salazar at halftime for the Facebook Live Q&A.

RELATED: BEST & WORST REDSKINS ALTERNATE UNIFORMS

Redskins vs. Cardinals Live Updates

PREGAME:

10:30 AM: Game Preview: The five things you need to know before Redskins vs. Cardinals.

1. Keep it moving
2. Missing in action
3. Consider the source
4. Problems don't go away
5. Harder they fall

10:15 AM: Be sure to follow CSN Insiders J.P. Finlay and Rich Tandler, who are at University of Phoenix Stadium in Phoenix, Ari. Also, give our CSN Redskins Twitter account too. Come for the analysis, stay for the dank memes.

10:00 AM: Welcome to CSNMA's live updates blog of Week 13 Redskins vs. Cardinals. As always, I am Troy Machir and today I will be your online guide to Redskins vs. Cardinals football in the painted desert of the southwest. If you have an issue with me, you can cuss me out on Twitter, 140 characters at a time. It's fun.