Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Cooley working to develop a rapport with McNabb

Thanks to Jason Reid for a great article(below). To add just a bit more in my own words, I feel like our OTA's have been outstanding. I have been truly impressed with the way everyone has shown up and worked. Of course I understand the endless cycle of offseason anticipation, as well as I fully realize that we have gone through Super Bowl winning June's in Ashburn for a long time. But honestly, there is a true reason for fans to get ready to "cheer their asses off" this season (Shannahanism).

Finally, I get as bored as the next dude with the constant politically correct football player lingo and newspaper banter and as I reread what I wrote and the article below, I grasp that I'm coming off as a total tool. I don't want to be, so I'll just say that I'm excited for the Redskins to kick ass this season, win a ton of games and have a blast doing it.

Cooley working to develop a rapport with McNabb

Last Friday in a radio interview with ESPN 980's "The Sports Fix," new Redskins quarterback Donovan McNabb discussed the process of learning a new offense after playing in one system in Philadelphia for the past 11 years.

On Saturday, at his camp in Fairfax, tight end Chris Cooley spoke more about the process of picking up the Mike and Kyle Shanahan-run offense and the adjustment he and other receivers are going through in working with a new quarterback.
Entering his seventh year in Washington, where there have been several coaching changes, Cooley is no stranger to new systems. He has been impressed, however, with how offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan is instructing the team.

"As far as the offense I've really been impressed with the way they've coached it," Cooley said. "There's a lot of volume, it's the NFL so you expect that, but the way we've utilized time in the classroom, the way Coach [Kyle] Shanahan has coached it with a lot of film study instead of just black and white on paper has been really impressive, I've really enjoyed that."

With Mike Shanahan at the helm, there have been questions about whether more discipline has been imposed during this off-season. Cooley said that there hasn't been more demand when it comes to the schedule, but added that there is definitely a new attitude and new expectations around the facility.

"I think the guys have worked hard. I think that's one of the biggest differences," he said. "The demands on the guys, the expectations, are super high and it's not yelling and screaming. It's just, 'If you want to be a part of this team you're going to do what we say.' That's been kind of what we expect. And everyone is expected to be there 100 percent, [and] obviously everyone has except for a couple people."

Perhaps the biggest adjustment Cooley faces is developing a rapport with McNabb. Cooley was close with former Redskins quarterback Jason Campbell and developed a strong connection with him on the field - especially in 2007 and 2008 when he caught 149 passes for 1635 yards and nine touchdowns (though just one of those was in 2008).

Now the tight end must figure out the preferences and habits of McNabb, a veteran who himself must learn the tendencies of a whole new set of pass catchers.

Cooley may see an expanded role in the offense this season; he said he is running "everything all the receivers run." His ability to become comfortable with McNabb could be crucial, especially with few proven receiving threats other than Santana Moss.
"He's fine as far as his reads on the plays. It's just learning how guys are going to run routes is a big difference," Cooley said. "He's been around guys that have done things the way he's wanted so you've got to talk it over. You gotta say, 'Well, this is how I'm going to do it,' or 'what do you want here?' And I think that's been the toughest part. I've [run] routes in the past and I've not got balls, and I've seen balls from Donovan and they're not where I expect them to be. And so we just all got to get on the same page and we will."

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That was a great article from Jason Reid. And I like the comment about "Super Bowl winning Junes"--the Skins are perennial off-season champs. But I think we'll all be cheering our asses off this fall--there's real hope in the air this year!

Shouldn't you be at work? lol...

Why do you think you might be coming off as a tool? This is the first time I've read your blog and it's a refreshing change of pace to the redundant:"Well, we're going to, you know, take it one game at a time and, you know, give each one our best shot. And speaking of shots, I've got to go and meet some team mates for a, um, you know, social function...."

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