RICHMOND, Va. -- Highlights from the last practice for the Washington Redskins in Richmond:
When the final horn sounded after the last drill, the players whooped and hollered, thrusting their helmets in the air. One player shouted, “Freedom!” Amen to that.
Yes, it still gets spirited in practice even when there is no crowd and even when they’re just in shells. Take how players reacted after the No. 2 offense scored a touchdown in the two-minute drill. Quarterback Kirk Cousins connected with receiver Ryan Grant who was running a go-route from around the 20. The corner sat in zone and the safety, Trenton Robinson , couldn’t rotate over fast enough. Grant caught an open pass for the score. After the play: linebacker Adam Hayward jumped a couple feet in the air annoyed by what happened and another player shouted an expletive. Cousins yelled, “Heck yeah! … Well done! Yes!” And ran to Grant.
Grant again showed the ability to create an extra yard of separation with a good plant to drive the defender off an extra yard then came back for the ball. He did it against corner Tracy Porter, planting his foot and driving Porter back and then cutting to the sideline (while working back for the ball) and getting out of bounds to stop the clock.
One of the best plays of the day involved Cousins and Grant. Before people freak out, relax, Robert Griffin III had a good day, too. But some of the highlight plays involved these two players. Anyway, on this play Cousins threw with a ton of trust. He threw into a crowded area before Grant had even made his cut -- with defenders a couple yards on either side and another behind him. Grant then did the savvy vet move and came back for the ball. Had he not done so, not sure it would have been completed. A good play on both ends.
Meanwhile, Griffin completed his drive with a fade pass to Roberts over corner David Amerson in the end zone. Safety Ryan Clark had little chance to help, playing a single-high look. Thought Amerson might have a play on the ball, but did not. Have said this before: Roberts does a good job with contested catches.
Griffin converted a pump-and-go pass to receiver DeSean Jackson in seven-on-seven work against corner Richard Crawford. Nothing unusual. But what made it noteworthy is that fullback Darrel Young was running a route to the flat on the same side. He didn't look at the ball and instead predicted to the media just as the ball was thrown, "That's six." Young said as soon as the play was called he knew it would work.
Alfred Morris put a nice move on linebacker Keenan Robinson in a one-on-one passing drill, shaking him at the line and cutting to the right. Robinson was still close to him, but quarterback Colt McCoy delivered a nice ball that Morris grabbed just out of Robinson’s reach. But running backs coach Randy Jordan was a bit excited about what he saw, “That’s what I’m talking about!”
Linebacker Perry Riley typically does a good job in these drills – it’s just man coverage. But he had to resort to holding rookie running back Lache Seastrunk on one route in which he cut outside, gave him a little shake and cut back inside.
Riley had terrific coverage on a Griffin seam pass to tight end Logan Paulsen, tipping the ball into teammate E.J. Biggers’ hands for an interception in a red zone drill.
Saw Clifton Geathers driving a couple offensive linemen back during full-team work: guard Josh LeRibeus, working on the right side, and tackle Tom Compton. Geathers did not disrupt the play either time -- in fact, one ended up as a Kirk Cousins touchdown pass to Andre Roberts on the other side of the field -- but he made their lives difficult for a couple seconds.
Rookie Morgan Moses had some tough snaps in the one-on-one work; saw Adrian Robinson work him to the outside and saw Everrette Brown take him inside and then cross him up back to the outside. Good technique by Brown with his hands. Next time, Brown beat Moses with speed.
Brian Orakpo tried to work Trent Williams to the outside in the one-on-one work, but was denied. At the top of his rush, Orakpo started to try and spin back inside, but Williams engulfed him and prevented him from completing the move.
Rookie Zach Hocker missed a 33-yard field goal that skidded off the right upright, but did make a 39-yarder on his next attempt. Veteran Kai Forbath made both of his kicks, a 30-yarder and a 38-yarder. Forbath did a better job on kickoffs, with both of his attempts having 4.0 seconds of hangtime. Forbath had a 3.8 second hangtime on his second kickoff. On his first kickoff, he stuck the ball just over the goalposts.
Receiver Pierre Garcon caused Amerson to lean back a little when he came off the line in press coverage. Garcon released to the outside and had a step but the ball went elsewhere. Amerson recovered after initially being off-balance.
Rookie Trent Murphy easily beat tackle Mo Hurt to the outside on one rush in full-team work.