RICHMOND, Va. -- Highlights and observations from the Washington Redskins' practice Tuesday:
There aren’t a whole lot because they didn’t practice full-speed and they were in shells. But there were a couple moments worth noting.
Had a chance to watch Junior Galette work during individual drills and it’s clear he plays with more explosion than most players on the Redskins. I posted a video of him on my Facebook account, but during individual drills, Galette crouches lower than anyone else and springs off the snap. It’ll certainly add a different look once he can play.
Niles Paul did not have shells on, but he still participated in some full-team work, even beating linebacker Adam Hayward on a deep cross and catching a pass in stride from quarterback Robert Griffin III. Hayward had stopped running before the pass arrived (again: not full speed), but the pass was on target and Paul had won the route.
The Redskins were working on calling plays via the headset with offensive coordinator Sean McVay radioing in the plays. Yes, before you ask, coach Jay Gruden still will call the plays.
The Redskins worked on special teams today, which led to one near gaffe on a kickoff return. They were using a Jugs machine to serve as the kickoffs, but one was short -- around the 20-yard line. That’s where blocker Tom Compton was. Rather than let Andre Roberts run under the ball, Compton tried to catch it; bad move. Roberts ran into him and the ball bounced free.
Colt McCoy was involved in three noteworthy plays. On the first, he threw at receiver Tony Jones’ feet, which turned out to be beneficial. The ball kicked off Jones’ foot and into the arms of receiver Colin Lockett. Then, McCoy threw a deep cross to tight end Chase Dixon, who made a one-handed catch over the top of a linebacker. Finally, McCoy threw a comeback to rookie Evan Spencer, who made a nice grab by reaching back to his inside. For what it’s worth, Kirk Cousins said he will be the second quarterback Thursday after Griffin.
End Stephen Paea’s strength/quickness have shown up this week in the one-on-ones. Got inside Brandon Scherff on a rush and the second time he beat Scherff with his hands inside. Later, Scherff did a nice job riding him out, but Paea stayed with the rush and was hard to slow.
Have to say, one of the better linemen blocking in the one-on-one drills Tuesday was guard Shawn Lauvao. Worked very hard to keep his hands in tight versus end Jason Hatcher and it enabled Lauvao to win each time. Left tackle Trent Williams also excelled by keeping his hands in tight versus Ryan Kerrigan to stop his bull rush.
Mentioned this Monday, but it’s obvious that Preston Smith is still learning how to rush as an NFL passer. It takes time, of course, as Smith is transitioning to life as an outside linebacker. But it’s as much about learning what moves work and what don’t. I’ll have more on this later in the week, but it’s been an education for him thus far. What the Redskins really like, however, is his size and length. He’s not just some tall, lanky rusher; he’s 270 pounds and while he’s learning to rush he can also play with power. The other trick is learning how to play low at an NFL level. Stay tuned.