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Report: Redskins sign kicker Cundiff, release Gano

Report: Redskins sign kicker Cundiff, release Gano

It appears that it was premature for Graham Gano to celebrate winning the Redskins kicking job on Monday.

The Redskins have signed former Ravens kicker Billy Cundiff, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter.
And Gano is now unemployed.According to a source, Gano has been released to make room for Cundiff, signaling an expected turn of events at Redskins Park.
On Monday, after veteran Neil Rackers had been cut, Gano told reporters, "I'm excited to have the opportunity" to return for a fourth season in Washington. Coach Mike Shanahan, however, sidestepped a question about Gano's job security.
"Obviously, I'm not going to go through the possibilities," Shanahan said when asked if he planned to sign a second kicker to compete with Gano. "There's always a lot of possibilities that could occur before the first game at every position."

So Cundiff makes the short drive down the Baltimore-Washington Parkway.

The 32-year-old Cundiff also has kicked for the Cowboys, Saints, and Browns and is among the NFL's best on kickoffs, racking up an NFL record 44 touchbacks last season.
With Baltimore last year he was good on 28 of 37 field goals (75.7 percent). He was 7 for 9 from 40-49 but only 1 for 6 from 50 or more yards out.

Cundiff's final kick, however, was his worst. He had a 32-yard attempt to send the AFC championship game against the Patriots into overtime but he missed the kick as time expired.
In 2010, though, Cundiff was tapped for the Pro Bowl after making 89.7-percent of his field goal attempts (26 of 29).

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Pressure Points: New position should lead to more playmaking from Su'a Cravens

Pressure Points: New position should lead to more playmaking from Su'a Cravens

In the weeks leading up to training camp, Redskins Insider JP Finlay will look at specific people facing increased pressure for the 2017 season. 

Pressure Point: Strong safety Su'a Cravens

Cravens flashed his playmaking ability in spots during 2016, but finding the right position and injuries stunted his impact as a rookie. He lost time early in the year to a concussion against the Browns and then saw his season cut short after an arm injury in December in Philadelphia. 

Injuries can't be planned on, but in 2017, the position issue should be solved.

Cravens looks poised to open the season starting alongside D.J. Swearinger in the Redskins secondary. The rebuilt safety duo could go a long way towards an improved Redskins defense.

Swearinger established himself as a quality starter last year playing with the Cardinals. Pro Football Focus rated him the No. 8 safety in the NFL. For Cravens, however, this is the year to establish himself.

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

So far, Redskins coach Jay Gruden likes Cravens' developement.

"He’s doing a great job. We’re happy with his progress," Gruden said in June. "I think just the more he plays, the better he’s going to get. The more he can just go practice and watch himself on tape and watch his eye progression and his angles, that’s just going to be huge for him because he continues to develop."

One of the reasons he slipped out of the first round in the 2016 Draft was because of speed. At his USC Pro Day, he ran a 4.69. Is Cravens fast enough to play safety in the NFL? 

His 40 time might not suggest it, but the Washington secondary is not full of burners anyway. In fact, linebacker Zach Brown's 4.50 40 time at the NFL Combine was faster than any of the Redskins projected secondary (Cravens, Swearinger, Josh Norman or Bashaud Breeand). The Redskins coaches think proper positioning and communication will account for any lack of speed in their defensive backfield. 

In college at USC, Cravens played mostly safety but showed he could line up all over the field. In Washington last season, he played almost exclusively interior linebacker, mostly in dime and nickel situations.

He produced, 23 tackles and an interception in 11 games, but it seemed clear to all parties he was better suited for the secondary. Asked about Cravens late last season, one Redskins player said simply, "Su'a is a safety."

This year, Su'a is a safety.

Week 3 as a rookie, Cravens made arguably the most important play of the Redskins season, intercepting Eli Manning to secure the team's first win of the year. That pick showed exactly why the Redskins drafted Cravens. He was tight in coverage and made a leaping, athletic play on the ball to force the turnover.

As a strong safety, Cravens will inch up towards the box on plenty of snaps and will rarely, if ever, be wholly responsible for deep middle coverage. That should mean plenty more opportunities to make plays like he did in Giants Stadium. The pressure is on.


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!

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NFL Shop sold license plate with Redskins logo over outline of Washington ... state

NFL Shop sold license plate with Redskins logo over outline of Washington ... state

Let's just get this out of the way: The Washington Redskins represent Washington, D.C., not Washington state. 

Duh, everyone knows that, you might think. But you'd be wrong. 

Wrong like this "state pride" license plate sold on NFLShop.com until this morning. 

The plates are manufactured by a company called Stockdale Technologies and feature team logos over outlines of their home states. 

The Ravens plate, for example, is on a purple background with the state of Maryland outlined in gold behind the logo.

The Redskins version, however, places the team's logo over the state of Washington ... on the other side of the country from Washington, D.C. 

MORE REDSKINS: Would Cousins give the Redskins a discount like Oshie gave the Caps?

The embarrassing error was first reported by The Washington Post's Dan Steinberg, who ordered the license plate before the NFL Shop removed the product from its online store.

The worst part of the whole episode was Steinberg's discovery that the Washington state confusion was hardly an isolated incident. 

In fact, Steinberg dug up a number of recent tweets from people who thought the Redskins represented Washington state. Some even thought that about other D.C. teams. 

How many of these people actually know that Washington, D.C. is not in Washington state? Or that it's not technically a state?