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Redskins.com: Redskins Set to Resume Coaching Sessions


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Redskins Set to Resume Coaching Sessions


By Jason Gould

Editor, Redskins.com

The Redskins are set to embark on their final set of coaching sessions before the start of training camp. The team is scheduled to practice Thursday and Friday at Redskin Park, and will wrap up its off-season practice schedule with four practices next week. The sessions are not open to the public.

The increased speed on offense has been one of the central themes of Washington's off-season practices so far. The acquisition of players like wide receivers Laveranues Coles and Patrick Johnson, running back Trung Canidate and running back and kick returner Chad Morton seems to have added an element of quickness the team did not have in 2002.

The team also has stressed the need to practice together to gain level of confidence in each other.

"Certainly I think we're all more comfortable with each other," head coach Steve Spurrier said in May. "But the only thing that really matters is how we perform when the season starts."

The Redskins open the season on Thursday, September 4 at FedExField against the Jets.

Washington's off-season practices also have given the defense a chance to evaluate its new players. The unit has added players like defensive linemen Regan Upshaw, Brandon Noble and Jermaine Haley and defensive backs Matt Bowen and Alex Molden, among others.

“There’s been a lot of competition, which is what we wanted," defensive coordinator George Edwards said after the team's last set of practices. "That’s the environment you want because it’s going to make everyone better. We have guys coming out here and working hard every day. That’s what we're trying to get across to them.”

Looking ahead to the 2003 regular season, Spurrier said: “We have to play better, play smarter. We have to coach better, coach smarter. We have a lot of work to do before the regular season but we have plenty of time to get it done.”

Washington held a mini-camp in early May and had two weeks of coaching sessions shortly after that.

"The biggest thing we were impressed with was that the players stayed very focused through the camps and the coaching sessions," Edwards said. "I look forward to finishing up strong over the next few weeks of practices. We'll throw a little bit more at them and start up again in training camp."

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