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Cooley’s versatility as a fullback is a significant asset in his push to make the team. If the Redskins keep one fullback, Darrel Young, Cooley could be the backup, just as Mike Sellers was last year. It gives Cooley an edge over all the other tight ends.

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WR Leonard Hankerson‘s hands have been reliable since he dropped a pass early in training camp. As the No. 2 receiver with Josh Morgan (hamstring) out until Monday, Hankerson has lined up outside and caught most of his passes near the sideline or at least outside the hash marks.

There haven’t been many opportunities for Hankerson to run after the catch, which is when he had drop problems in the past. He would take his eyes off the ball and look downfield before he secured the catch. Near the boundary the last few days, he has caught everything.

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RB Evan Royster took the first snap with the first-string during team drills. Just an update as we creep toward Thursday’s preseason opener at Buffalo.

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FS Tanard Jackson should have intercepted QB Kirk Cousins’ lob to WR Terrence Austin on a corner route to the left sideline. Jackson read Austin, who was his responsibility, and closed well while Cousins’ throw hung up a bit. Jackson undercut the route at the sideline, but the ball went through his hands.

Jackson got burned later in practice when he tried to undercut a pass to RB Roy Helu near the right sideline. He was a step late after Cousins pump-faked, and Helu caught it for an uncontested catch-and-run touchdown.

Jackson is working back from a calf injury, so practice is the time to determine which routes he can jump and which he can’t. But if he’s this aggressive in the games, things are going to be very interesting with him in the deep secondary.

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QB Kirk Cousins kept his shoulders turned perpendicular to the line of scrimmage as he rolled to his right on one broken pass play during team drills. He stayed in a good throwing position and thus was able to unload accurately to his checkdown option, RB Alfred Morris.

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TE Fred Davis told reporters early Friday afternoon that he has grown as a blocker. He didn’t show that in practice, though, when he whiffed on FS Madieu Williams’ blitz from the secondary. Davis didn’t move his feet on the play. He feebly reached for Williams, who wasn’t at all impeded on his free run to QB Robert Griffin.

If Davis catches 70 passes and eight touchdowns, his blocking deficiencies would take a backseat. But Davis has to prove he’s a complete tight end this season. Words don’t mean anything.

Story Continues →