- The Washington Times - Thursday, August 4, 2005

Theismann on shotgun: It’s about time

Former Redskins quarterback Joe Theismann has waited 20 years for coach Joe Gibbs to use the shotgun offense.

Theismann recalled trying it once during a 1985 preseason game in Los Angeles. Center Jeff Bostic’s snap went over Theismann’s head for a big loss. So much for that.

“I walk to the sidelines. I said, ‘Coach, don’t worry about it,’ ” Theismann said. “He said, ‘I’m not worried about it. We’re not running the shotgun anymore.’ I said, ‘Coach …’ and he said, ‘I don’t want to hear another word. There will be no shotgun. Done, over with, out of here.’

“It took 20 years for Joe to say the shotgun will be part of the offense. Just the fact that there’s a shotgun on the practice field is a big revelation for Joe Gibbs. I’m very envious right now. I’m going to go in and cry for a little while.”

Theismann said the Redskins’ hopes for improving on last year’s 6-10 record lie in Gibbs’ retooled offense.

“I think he’s an entirely different coach,” Theismann said. “I think Joe Gibbs right now is back to being the Joe Gibbs we all have come to know. … From a player standpoint, the Redskins are as good as anyone. The question this year will be, has Joe adapted to calling plays at a comfort level where he feels like he can get it done?”

Jansen toppled

Jon Jansen was sent spinning to the ground during the morning session after running back Clinton Portis crashed into a teammate who blindsided the 6-foot-6, 308-pound offensive tackle. Jansen, who missed all of last season after tearing an Achilles’ tendon in the preseason opener, was immediately checked out by director of sports medicine Bubba Tyer but was more embarrassed than hurt.

“It just caught me off guard,” Jansen said.

Jansen’s day got much brighter with the arrival of three dozen milkshakes he is having delivered each Wednesday for select Redskins personnel. The shakes are from Whitey’s in Moline, Ill., a place his wife, Martha, discovered online.

Buckeye boomers

The Redskins’ punter will be an Ohio State product; the question is, which one?

So far in camp, Andy Groom, an All-American for the Buckeyes in 2002, has displayed a powerful leg reminiscent of former Redskins Pro Bowl punter Matt Turk. However, Groom failed to stick following training camp shots with Tampa Bay in 2003 and San Francisco in 2004 as he tried to master the subtleties of the job.

Those are what 39-year-old Tom Tupa, Ohio State’s quarterback and punter as a senior in 1987, does best. And Tupa led the NFC with a 44.1 gross average in 2004, his first year with the Redskins, showing he still has plenty of strength left in his right leg.

Night time is the right time

Yesterday’s second practice was the first under rented lights at Redskin Park. Previous camps have included a handful of night practices, but they were held at high schools.


5Players in camp who have played on winning Redskins teams (Ray Brown, Jon Jansen, Cory Raymer, Mike Sellers, James Thrash)


4-6 p.m. —Open to public

Rick Snider and David Elfin

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