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Thompson must turn potential into ability in a hurry

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Thompson must turn potential into ability in a hurry

Cornerback Brandyn Thompson showed some great athletic ability and playmaking instincts during training camp and in preseason games as a seventh-round pick out of Boise State last year. He was good enough to make the 53-man roster to start the season but he bounced up and down between the practice squad (5 games), the inactive list (2), and the roster all year long.He ended up playing just four snaps on defense so he remains something of an unknown quantity in 2012.During this offseason the team made some moves to bolster the cornerback position. They signed veterans Leigh Torrence and Cedric Griffin and drafted Richard Crawford in the seventh round. They did not resign Byron Westbrook, who played 127 snaps at corner or Phillip Buchanon, who played sparingly in between coming off of the suspended list and going on to injured reserve.So where might Thompson fit in? DeAngelo Hall and Josh Wilson are the starters. Griffin is likely to get first shot at the nickel back position and with all of the three wide receiver sets an NFL defense faces these days that is essentially a starting job. Kevin Barnes held the nickel job down last year and he struggled at times. He is not a lock to be on the final roster.But Thompson isnt either. They probably will keep five cornerbacks so that leaves Thompson in a battle with Barnes, Torrence, and Crawford for for two jobs. Thompson will have to turn his potential into actual ability in a hurry. He will need to make the most out of the offseason program, something he did not have the benefit of last year.He was on the roster for one more game than the maximum allowable for him to be eligible for the practice squad so its the 53-man roster or bust for Thompson in 2012.

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Jordan Reed one of four Redskins to begin training camp on PUP list

Jordan Reed one of four Redskins to begin training camp on PUP list

RICHMOND - Jordan Reed will start Redskins training camp on the Physically Unable to Perform list. 

The team's PR informed the media that Reed is experiencing pain and soreness in one of his big toes. The move to PUP was characterized as precautionary and they want to ensure that issues don't linger into the regular season. 

DeAngelo Hall, Houston Bates, and practice squadder Kendal Thompson will join Reed on the PUP list. 

RELATED: RANKING THE REDSKINS ROSTER

For Reed, an integral part of the Redskins offense, there is a long history of injuries. In 2016, he missed time with a separated shoulder and a concussion.

Before Redskins fans freak out, remember Reed took part in minicamp and looked dominant. The PUP list also allows the Redskins to activate Reed once he's capable of practicing. 

Reed did not take part in voluntary OTAs with the Redskins in May, but was a full participant with the team at June's minicamp. 

Asked about injured players taking part in practice during Wednesday's press conference, head coach Jay Gruden opened up:

I think the injured guys are injured guys. We’re never going to change how we treat them. It’s the trainers’ job to tell us when they can go. I’m not going to keep a guy out of practice just because I think he might be injured. It’s up to the trainers and up to that player to let me know whether they can go or not. But like you said, we do have a luxury of having 88 or 87 healthy bodies where we can practice and function without somebody who is injured. That’s the trainers’ job​.

Expect much more on this development.

UPDATE:

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Expectations won't change for Kirk Cousins, regardless of contract status

Expectations won't change for Kirk Cousins, regardless of contract status

RICHMOND - Jay Gruden expects the same effort and production from Kirk Cousins, regardless of the now two-year long contract saga between the quarterback and the Redskins.

"The thing about Kirk is you’re never worried about his preparation. It’s not going to vary from day in to day out," the coach said. "He’s not going to come in and be a different guy every day. He’s the same guy every day. [He’s] a great competitor, wants to get better."

Talks between Cousins' represenatives and the Redskins seemed more congenial this offseason, though the result remained the same. Cousins will be paid $24 million this year on the franchise tag, after making $20 million in 2016 on the same tag. 

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

Redskins team president Bruce Allen explained in a statment that his organization made an offer to Cousins that included $53 million guaranteed. Considering the funny money nature of NFL deals, the offer really only guaranteed another season at about $28 million for Cousins before a series of advantageous terms for the franchise. The deal had no chance of completion considering Cousins' leverage.

Still, Gruden thinks his quarterback will deliver. 

"He has a lot of room for improvement and he wants to be coached and it’s fun to coach him."

If Gruden sounds confident in Cousins' ability to compartmentalize, he should. The quarterback did just that last season, passing for nearly 5,000 yards with 25 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. 

The Redskins, and Cousins, struggled in the red zone in 2016, and that's something Gruden wants to see improved. 

"The contract status will take care of itself eventually, hopefully, but right now it is what it is and we’re happy to have him for 2017."

Long-term deal, or not, it's time for Gruden to coach and Cousins to quarterback.

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