Since the special teams disasters of 2013, there has been a lot of talk around Redskins Park that the kicking units need to be taken more seriously. But talk is cheap and NFL teams often make grand proclamations in the spring that end up being largely forgotten when the season rolls around.
We don’t know how the Redskins special teams will end up performing but there does appear to be some action to go with the rhetoric. Coach Jay Gruden was asked about the reasons behind the release of outside linebacker Rob Jackson.
“Yeah, it is tough. He’s a good player, great guy,” said Gruden . He’s worked hard, but part of the factoring – it’s not just how well you play that position, it’s what you do that can help the team in other spots, special teams for instance.”
It’s that last part that should get some attention. Gruden hints that Jackson may be a better linebacker than players like Gabe Miller and Everette Brown, both of whom are still on the roster. But a backup linebacker had better be able to play special teams. Evidently this is where Jackson came up short.
One decision on one player does not automatically improve the Redskins’ kicking units. But it is a concrete step in the right direction that means a lot more than verbal declarations made in March.