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Monday, August 8, 2011
Beck: I'll be ready for preseason opener

By Dan Graziano
ESPN.com

Whether this qualifies as good news or bad news depends on your current level of pessimism and grouchiness concerning the Washington Redskins' quarterback situation. But while he's been limited in practice since injuring his groin Saturday, John Beck said that he plans to be ready to play in Friday night's preseason game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Per Rick Maese of the Washington Post:
"That's my plan," Beck said after practice Monday morning. "I plan on going. Hopefully each day, it gets better and better, so that I can. But that's my plan."

Here's why this matters: Whether you believe it or not, and regardless of what you imagine their real motivation to be, Mike and Kyle Shanahan really do think Beck is a good quarterback. They believed it when he was drafted, and they're convinced he will be a good NFL quarterback. They think he hasn't yet had a real chance to show it since he arrived in the NFL, and they think, if the running game, receivers and offensive line come together as they hope they will, Beck can be successful for them.

They feel the same way about Rex Grossman, but they've seen him play and have success in the NFL. They haven't seen it yet from Beck, which is why they want to see him play in preseason games -- to see how he handles game pressure, with the bright lights on him for the first time as The Man at the head of an NFL offense, staring down James Harrison and LaMarr Woodley from inside a shaky pocket. If he's injured and unable to play in preseason games, his chances of opening the season as the team's starting quarterback will take a hit, as they're likely to lean toward Grossman, the known quantity.

So you can see why Beck is eager to get out there Friday night. Time will tell if his groin and the team's training staff let him. You can bet the coaches are as eager to see him as he is to be seen.