Line­men’s fight spices prac­tice

Though on same unit, Pip­kin and Lanier clash after a play

Richmond Times-Dispatch - - SPORTS2 - BY MICHAEL PHILLIPS mphillips@times­dis­ (804) 649-6546 @michaelpRTD

ASH­BURN — The pre­sumed fi­nal prac­tice of the sum­mer pro­gram is in the books for the Wash­ing­ton Red­skins. One more is sched­uled for Thurs­day, but Red­skins coach Jay Gru­den tra­di­tion­ally can­cels it and takes his team on a bond­ing ac­tiv­ity in­stead.

Wed­nes­day’s prac­tice was geared to­ward giv­ing the Red­skins rook­ies and third-team play­ers an op­por­tu­nity to shine, some­thing they don’t al­ways get. Third-team quar­ter­back Kevin Ho­gan took the vast ma­jor­ity of the snaps in the work­out.

Gru­den praised Ho­gan’s “es­capa­bil­ity,” not­ing that Ho­gan can move around out­side the pocket. With train­ing camp next, Ho­gan will get his op­por­tu­nity to win a prac­tice squad spot dur­ing the Rich­mond work­outs and the four pre­sea­son games.

Other mini­camp ob­ser­va­tions:

The day’s most in­trigu­ing de­vel­op­ment was a post­play fight be­tween de­fen­sive line­men On­dre Pip­kins and An­thony Lanier. Fight­ing is noth­ing un­usual dur­ing camp, but Pip­kins and Lanier are on the same unit, which is un­usual. Lanier had been in the mid­dle of a scuf­fle Tues­day as well. Coaches let the two fight for a minute be­fore Gru­den broke it up. Asked after the fight after, Gru­den dead­panned that he didn’t see it, and un­for­tu­nately there was no video of it, so he never will.

For­mer Vir­ginia Tech cor­ner­back Greg Stro­man had the day’s best play, grab­bing an in­ter­cep­tion dur­ing red-zone work. Stro­man was no­tice­able on a hand­ful of other plays as well. It’s al­ways worth not­ing when big plays come against third-team com­pe­ti­tion, but it still bodes well for Stro­man get­ting an op­por­tu­nity when camp be­gins.

Der­rius Guice’s lat­est feat of strength: hurtling over one of the team’s equip­ment man­agers, who was kneel­ing.

Of­fen­sive line­man Trent Wil­liams spoke with re­porters after the ses­sion. He didn’t par­tic­i­pate in the mini­camp, and still has a large wrap on his knee that was sur­gi­cally re­paired this off­sea­son, but said he plans to be ready when train­ing camp be­gins. Wil­liams said he’s been im­pressed as he’s got­ten to know quar­ter­back Alex Smith this week.

Gru­den also heaped the praise on Smith dur­ing the Tues­day ses­sion, calling the quar­ter­back, “the smartest guy I have ever been around.”

Smith’s de­vel­op­ment will be cru­cial to the Red­skins’ hopes this sea­son, be­cause there is no time for learn­ing on the job. Wash­ing­ton opens with the Car­di­nals and Colts, two very winnable football games. If the Red­skins truly have post­sea­son am­bi­tions, they can’t af­ford to drop those games.


For­mer Cleve­land Browns quar­ter­back Kevin Ho­gan took most of the snaps dur­ing the Red­skins’ prac­tice Wed­nes­day when third-team play­ers and rook­ies were given op­por­tu­ni­ties to shine.

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