RICHMOND—The marquee names for the Redskins-Patriots joint practices are Tom Brady and Robert Griffin III. But they are not going up against each other on the field. The battle that should interest Redskins fans was Brady going up against Keenan Robinson, the Redskins’ defensive signal caller.
Monday’s practice marked the first time that Robinson had been the primary defensive signal caller against another team. Brady looked like he was playing in Week 6 of the season as he called out signals, pointed out potential pass rushers, and was razor sharp with his accuracy. He moved the Patriots through the Redskins’ defense with relative ease.
Jay Gruden wasn’t happy about everything that went on during today’s session but he was happy with Robinson’s signal calling.
“Keenan did a nice job. I think communication was excellent,” he said. “There’s some things we’ve got to tighten down a little bit but overall I felt good about communication as far as the defense was concerned.
Brady kept Robinson, who had to get the defensive calls via hand signals since his helmet receiver wasn’t working, on his toes.
“It’s fun because he’s checking everything out there at the line of scrimmage and making sure he gets his team in the right play,” said Robinson, who is being given first crack at taking over for London Fletcher at Mike linebacker. “I’m out there just calling what the coach gave me. I do have a little leeway, if I don’t like something I can change it. But we didn’t do much of that today.”
Brady and company worked at a very fast pace, either going straight to the line or going with a very quick huddle. Robinson knows that’s a look they will see a lot when the games start to count.
“A lot of teams started going with the no-huddle offense. That might not be their base offense but a lot of teams are going to switch it up in there just so they ca get the ball rolling and get some momentum.”
Robinson realizes that the cat and mouse game is critical in today’s NFL.
“A lot of people say that most of the game is 80 percent, 90 percent mental and the rest physical,” he said. “And that’s very true because if you get out here and you don’t know what you’re doing no matter how good an athlete you are, you can’t perform. So when you’ve got Brady out there at the line of scrimmage calling shots and making you think, making you see what’s going to happen before the snap it’s forcing you to prepare for plays that you might not normally prepare for.”