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The Best Part. . .


The Best Part. . .

The best part about it was that there were so many best parts about it. It was Dallas, in Dallas, on a Monday night. All Redskins fans have had to put up with so much from the Dallas fans who always seemed to crawl out from everywhere after yet another loss to the Cowboys. It was the stunning, unexpected nature of it after such a listless offensive effort for 55 minutes. It all combined together to make for a day that provided more spontaneous smiling by Redskins fans than any since the few giddy days after Joe Gibbs came back as coach.

And that was one other great part about it--Gibbs’ reaction. The mild-mannered coach’s most demonstrative expression of emotion generally is to break into a broad smile and to look for others to congratulate as he did after each of the Redskins’ Super Bowl wins. Not this time; after this game ended, it was party time:

That’s Gibbs on the left, after the Gatorade bucket bath and after he jumped up into the air and brought his knees to his chest. He celebrated with everyone he could find to celebrate with and then went in and called the win one of his greatest moments in sports, this from a man who has lifted the aforementioned three Lombardi Trophies and a couple of Winston Cups.

Gibbs had stuck his neck out in making one of the quickest quarterback changes in history. Well before that, in March, he had stuck his neck out even more by trading away Laveranues Coles for Santana Moss, taking a huge salary cap hit in the process. After the game, John Madden revealed that Gibbs had said that he felt like the Cowboys were treating the Redskins like a homecoming opponent, what with the scheduling of the Ring of Whatever ceremonies for the night of the game. His offense, his specialty, was, at its better moments, sputtering.

You can agree or disagree about the QB move and the long-term effectiveness of the offense, but you have to agree that nobody in sports has earned a moment of sheer joy more than Joe Jackson Gibbs.

Predictions Recap

Not bad, not bad at all in the end. I did say that the team employing the running back between Julius Jones and Clinton Portis that had the better night would prevail. Jones did outgain Portis on the ground 81 yards to 52 but Portis picked up another 25 in receptions so their output was pretty even. As was the score and the bottom line here was:
Last year the policy in this space was that there would never again be a prediction that the Redskins would beat the Cowboys until such time that the Redskins actually did beat them. But, keeping with the theme here that what’s in the past is irrelevant, the final will be:
Washington 17, Dallas 16
After I posted this prediction, I received a number of emails from some who evidently were Dallas fans who were questioning my football knowledge, my sanity and/or possible intake of banned substances. The following was typical:
In accordance to your final score prediction to monday nights game........don't count your chickens before they hatch bubba.In reply, I didn’t bother telling him that examining things that haven’t hatched yet is the very nature of a prediction. Some concepts are way to difficult for room-temperature IQ Dallas fans to grasp. As I did with the other emailers of his ilk, I just told him to enjoy the game and come back around and share his razor-sharp insights after the game. I have yet to hear from him or any of them.

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Redskins' Doug Williams presents a special jersey to family of Jim Vance

Redskins' Doug Williams presents a special jersey to family of Jim Vance

On July 22, legendary D.C. broadcaster Jim Vance died at the age of 75.

During the first day of training camp on Thursday, Washington Redskins VP of player personnel Doug Williams, presented NBC4 sports reporter Carol Maloney with a gift for Vance's family.


The gesture by the Redskins was one filled with much respect for the award-winning anchor.

Vance was a staple for many D.C. locals, being a full-time anchor since 1972 for NBC4. 

Last summer, Vance revealed he had been diagnosed with cancer but never stopped working. 

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LIVE Redskins training camp practice report: Day 1

LIVE Redskins training camp practice report: Day 1

RICHMOND—The Redskins took the field for their first practice of the season. Jordan Reed is missing as was the usual stifling heat at the Bon Secours training center.It's warm but the humidity is down from the normal late-July sauna here. 

Here are my observations from practice as it unfolds. Come back and refresh often for the latest:

—Jamison Crowder still appears to be the No. 1 punt returner. Also fielding kicks off of the leg of Tress Way were Maurice Harris, Chris Thompson, and Will Blackmon. 

—The Redskins are practicing without pads per collective bargaining rules. A few are wearing shells. 

—New tight end EJ Bibbs just introduced himself to Vernon Davis as they were getting ready for some individual drills. Reminds me of a few year ago when a just acquired player was participating in stretching and they brought his contract out onto the field for him to sign. He wouldn’t have been able to practice otherwise. 

—Kirk Cousins just acknowledged a fan lined up near the sideline. ‘How’s it going, Derrick?” Derrick’s friends were properly impressed. 

—Maurice Harris showed good form in catching a Cousins pass over the middle against no defense. Nothing spectacular but but a good job reaching forward to pull in a pass that was ahead of him. 

—Harris with another nice catch, this time guarded over the middle by Will Blackmon. He is off to a good start in competing for playing time.

—Torian Gray is admonishing his defensive backs to “wake up, wake up.” On one rep he wanted Tevin Homer to “drive to the ball.”

—It looked like Josh Doctson had a step on Bashaud Breeland on a deep pass but the CB recovered and knocked the pass away. 

—A few plays later Doctson got deep again, this time against Quinton Dunbar. This time the CB couldn’t catch up and Doctson hauled in the pass.

—In the early going in 11 on 11, Will Compton and Mason Foster are the inside LBs with the first team and Joey Mbu is at nose tackle. Both situations could change over the course of the next few weeks. 

—Nice cut by Keith Marshall on a run around right end. He planted his foot and cut upfield with some serious burst. He’s a dark horse when it comes to making the roster but I’m keeping an eye on him. 

—Cousins with a dart to Terrelle Pryor along the sideline. A sharp and accurate throw. 

—Rain is approaching but it should hold off until practice is over. Meanwhile, the clouds and breeze are cooling things down. Nobody is complaining.  

—Pryor was assigned to block Josh Norman on a running play. Norman made a business decision not to contest the block and there was light contact as Norman backed down the field.

—Rookie Robert Davis made a solid back-shoulder catch on the sideline. I’m not sure if Colt McCoy intended for the pass to be back shoulder but that was where it went and Davis reached to make the grab. 

—What was that? Nate Sudfeld heaved one downfield to nobody in particular. Kendall Fuller got an easy interception, his second of the day. 

—That is from Richmond for today. Come on back tomorrow, we’ll do it again.