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Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Tuesday Redskins training camp thoughts

By Dan Graziano

ASHBURN, Va. -- You guys want to know who stood out in Washington Redskins practice today, and the easy answer for me is left tackle Trent Williams. The No. 4 overall pick in the 2010 draft, who missed the final four games of the 2011 season on a drug suspension, is impressing folks all over the building this month. Outside linebackers Brian Orakpo and Ryan Kerrigan are switching sides on certain plays this year, which means each is getting a turn trying to get past Williams. And they're not enjoying it very much.

"Trent's a beast," Kerrigan said. "I mean, we were just talking in the meeting room earlier today. He's having a phenomenal training camp and there's no reason why he can't be one of the top tackles in this league. He obviously has the talent, but I think this offseason he's really put his mind to it and gotten after it. What can you do against him? He's strong as an ox and quick as a cat. He's awesome."

The issue of Williams' potential awesomeness has never been in question. He was, after all, the No. 4 pick in the draft. He is strong, quick and athletic in ways that could make him one of the very best at his position. The only questions with Williams have been about focus and demeanor. And when he got popped for the drug suspension last year, those questions came into clear focus.

Washington's Trent Williams
Trent Williams has impressed at Redskins training camp. "Trent's a beast," Ryan Kerrigan said.
But Williams now knows he can't mess up again, or he's going to forfeit more millions of dollars than most people can even imagine having in the first place. And it looks and sounds as though he's re-dedicated himself.

"He's different this year," Redskins coach Mike Shanahan told me after practice. "There is a sense of urgency. Everybody can see it. I'm just hoping he keeps it on a straight line. I told him, 'I'm never going to compliment you again. You can make a great play, and I'm still going to be on your butt.'"

Sounds like a pretty good plan. And it sounds as though, so far, it's working.

Some other thoughts/observations/sights/sounds from my second and final day here: