Skip to content

Need to Know: Redskins valued Cary Williams’ experience

Jan 7, 2016, 5:08 AM EDT


Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, January 7, three days before the Washington Redskins host the Green Bay Packers in a wild card playoff game.

Five thoughts on the playoff-bound Redskins

—If I had to guess which Redskins running back will be inactive on Sunday I’d say Chris Thompson. He is being hampered by a toe injury and he showed some frustration in practice yesterday. Matt Jones (hip) was limited but he appears to be improving. Toe injuries are tough to overcome quickly and I wouldn’t be surprised if Thompson was on the shelf on Sunday.

—The two names to watch on the Packers’ injury list are CB Sam Shields and LT David Bakhatiari. Shields, their top corner and the primary candidate to cover DeSean Jackson, has missed the last three games with a concussion. Bakhatiari’s absence for the last two weeks has created some severe pass protection problems for the Packers; they have been sacked 14 times in that two-game span. Shields and Bakhatiari were two of six Packers who did not practice on Wednesday due to injuries. All 53 Redskins on the roster practiced; five were limited, the rest were a full go.

—There appears to be some hand wringing out there about the return of Kory Lichtensteiger at center. Some are worried about his game shape, others about continuity on the line. But any drawbacks there may be in those aspects are more than compensated for by the improvement in shotgun snaps back to Kirk Cousins. The Redskins were very fortunate that none of Josh LeRibeus’ snaps ended up causing a disaster. On a related note, Brian de la Puente must not have impressed at all to be unable to push LeRibeus aside.

—Jay Gruden said that they brought in CB Cary Williams because the veteran is a plug and play guy. “[We] needed another veteran guy and he fits into the same mold as [Will] Blackmon, Mason Foster and Alex Smith – guys that have played a lot of football where this game won’t be too big for them, that they can come in and play significant reps and not be overwhelmed with the terminology or the competition,” said Gruden. “He’s a very confident corner.” Perhaps Williams is a little too confident for his own good sometimes but he is immediate depth and that’s what the team needed.

—Trent Williams said that seems like a “normal” week at Redskins Park even though “in the back of your mind you know it’s a playoff game so it’s an emphasis to bring your A-game.” He also said that nobody wants to be the guy that makes the mistake that costs the team a playoff game. “The importance of just any bad play, any penalty, things like that in a playoff atmosphere tens to sting a little more than it does in a regular season game,” said Williams. “Obviously the intensity is going to be sky-high for both sides.”


Today’s schedule: Practice 11:35; Jay Gruden and Joe Barry news conferences and player availability after practice, approx. 1:00

Days until: Redskins vs. Packers in wild card playoff game 3; Super Bowl 50 31

In case you missed it

  1. sidepull - Jan 7, 2016 at 6:35 AM

    Cary Williams, to me, always talked bigger than he played. I never really considered him a good corner. Experienced yes. I dont think they could do much better this time of year. Mason Foster, wow that was a really nice pick up. Maybe the Redskins can help Williams have some great minutes by putting him in the position to be successful..

    As for the health of the Packers? I hope they are all ready to roll. The Redskins squad has to beat there squad with the players that show up on game day, and that’s pretty much the bottom line. The Redskins beat their full squad and there is more respect to go around. Pretty sure Djax has zero fear of Sam Shields anyhow..

    • colorofmyskinz - Jan 7, 2016 at 6:41 AM

      Agreed sidepull. Give us their best so there are no excuses when we torch the packers.

      Anyone notice when you go to the playoff brackets they show every team by their mascot except the redskins. The say Packers against Washington. Or stealers against bengals. Are liberals posting the playoff brackets? I can’t wait until everyone has to hear REDSKINS week after week to rub it in their face!

      • sidepull - Jan 7, 2016 at 8:25 AM

        Redskins Redskins Redskins!

  2. colorofmyskinz - Jan 7, 2016 at 6:36 AM

    Yes LeRibrus’s snaps have been a real problem for Kirk. How many miscue snaps in the last game? Not sure what is more important, snaps that are on the dime with no risk of mishandling the ball, where the kory may not be in full football shape, or LeRibeus misfiring snaps left and right but in football shape. Thoughts?

    Thank god for the Cary Williams pick up. Anyone know what he cost? Scot is a best of a GM.

    At one point this week I read that jones was not likely on Sunday. Is he likely now? And Thompson likely to sit?

    As long as McVay and cousins start with pass attack to set the run up, I think Mortis goes for 120 this game! Thomas goes for 65 passing and 45 rushing.


  3. garg8050 - Jan 7, 2016 at 6:58 AM

    Sunday can’t get here fast enough…this week seems like it’s taking forever. Cautiously optimistic about this game. Crowd will be electric and should really provide a home field advantage. As always, hoping for a quick start. Need to protect Kirk and let him get into a rhythm. I don’t see anyone on the Packers who can guard Reed. Watching the Vikings-Packers game, even the announcers identified Jake Ryan as a weak link in pass coverage. I’m sure the ‘Skins are devising ways to get him into man-to-man coverage on either Reed or one of our RB’s.

    Defensively, I think the ‘Skins will be aggressive and I can see them pressing the Packers receivers, much like they did the Giants receivers. I’m hoping Barry stays aggressive and brings lots of pressure; nobody on the Packers scares you in terms of taking one to the house.

    Thinking 27-17 Skins….

  4. cpst123 - Jan 7, 2016 at 7:12 AM

    CB Cary Williams wasn’t a bad pick up if he fits our scheme better than Seattle. But he wasn’t brought in to start so depending on him isn’t a huge problem unless the injury bug continues if tenure with the Redskins.

    As far as Kory vs LeRibeus, I think Kory’s ability to call protections is more important than his ability to snap. The wild snaps are entertaining but Captain Kirk has been able to handle them. LeRibeus has also been out of place quite a bit in the run game. Kory can’t handle the big guys but is smarter and is an overall upgrade.

  5. skinsgame - Jan 7, 2016 at 7:45 AM

    I’m all for an upgrade at Center for the Redskins but, am I the only one who remembers that Lichty spent most of his time getting shoved backward into the pocket? It’s been a long while so maybe people don’t recall but, Kory was the weak link in the line, particularly on passing downs. I respectfully disagree with the move to replace the Center during the playoffs. Raji will bulldoze him.

    • colorofmyskinz - Jan 7, 2016 at 8:14 AM

      Good point Skinsgame. I think I remember that as well. He is light for a center. I hope we get a real center this year in the draft. It is our weakest link in the line for sure. And our backup is not great. Place Jory back at guard or backup guard and find a starting center that can anchor the line.

      • sidepull - Jan 7, 2016 at 8:37 AM

        Do we need a real Center or what? I hope they go get oe in the draft too. These guys try to do their best at Center but one day the Redskins got to draft a guy that is a Center and stop this conversion stuff. One brick at a time.

        It is a fact that KL is lightweight at C and BJ Raji is probably going to try and push KL around. But the fact remains that the Redskins ran the ball better when he was at C. It worries me as well to have them switch when they have a small winning streak going, (if its not broke don’t fix it) . I also worry every game for the ball to get snapped over Cuz’s head. I guess te coaches are going to call it to put the team in the best position to win.

        • bangkokben - Jan 7, 2016 at 10:44 AM

          So basically you’re damned if you do and you’re damned if you don’t if the results don’t justify the switch? Lichtensteiger’s rust and strength are an issue – who know’s how his shot gun snaps are going to be after three months off? At the same time, LeRibs has improved at the rate of a boxwood’s growth and his snaps have been flirting with disaster. Starting Lichtensteiger is the right decision but the right decision isn’t bullet proof. Pot Roast can give Kory a few bull rushes this week to get him up to speed. it’s not like Josh hasn’t been pushed into the backfield either.

          Wouldn’t it be nice to see the center get to the 2nd level in the run game, the snaps get to where they’re supposed to be – on the right count, and the right calls made on the line? LeRibeus has done a fine job holding down the fort and is insurance in case Lichtenstieger can’t show any improvement but the potential positive possibilities of a healthy Kory Lichtenstieger vastly outweigh the status quo.

          Having said all that, doesn’t mean that Kory makes that much of an improvement. If we we’re using Rich’s mythical poker chips and have to hedge our bets on: vast upgrade, noticeable upgrade, virtually no change, noticeable downgrade, and vast downgrade; I’d have my bets as follows:

          $10 vast upgrade
          $30 noticeable upgrade
          $50 virtually no change
          $5 noticeable downgrade
          $5 vast downgrade

  6. troylok - Jan 7, 2016 at 8:22 AM

    I understand what Trent Williams is saying but you can’t play scared. Players have to think about doing their best and rely on the fact that good coaching has conditioned them not to make stupid penalties.

  7. metalman5150 - Jan 7, 2016 at 11:10 AM

    All of this happy-go-lucky, people picking the skins as favorite, talk has me worried.
    Chins up boys! Hopefully not only will we win, but hopefully it’ll be in front of a majority Redskins nation.

    Pack nation travels too well sometimes. Archives

Follow Us On Twitter