- The Washington Times - Friday, November 3, 2017

ASHBURN — The Washington Redskins held practice in their indoor bubble Friday, blasting music to simulate the heavy amount of crowd noise that they will face Sunday in Seattle. The Seahawks hold one of the best home field advantages in the NFL, in part, because of the noise.

To prepare for the noise, the Redskins worked on silent counts at the line of scrimmage and nonverbal communication.

Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins has never played at CenturyLink Stadium, but was forced to use silent counts in Kansas City and Philadelphia this season.

“I’m sure that Seattle may be even louder than anywhere else,” Cousins said. “We’ll be ready for it the best we can. We understand what we’re walking into from that standpoint, and we know we have to communicate very well, verbally and visually, and be ready to go, from the first snap to the last.”

Left tackle Trent Williams said the atmosphere makes more of a difference in college, where players are less experienced. In the NFL, Williams said, players have a lot more time to study and there’s more consistent chemistry on the offensive line.

But against Seattle, the Redskins are facing another week of patching together an offensive line — meaning the chemistry won’t be as consistent for Washington’s new group. 

Left guard Shawn Lauvao (stinger) was ruled out Friday, while Williams (knee), Spencer Long (knees) and Ty Nsekhe (core muscle) are doubtful.

Brandon Scherff is questionable with a knee injury. Again, four of the Redskins‘ five usual starters up front were listed on the injury report, and right tackle Morgan Moses is still recovering from two sprained ankles.

“It’s a lot,” Moses said. “You go from Brandon Scherff, who is a Pro Bowl guard. Me and him, being there for three years playing together, you build that chemistry. You go from a rookie in (Tyler) Catalina. But being able to be a veteran guy out there, I’m able to help him. … You just have to enhance your talking.”

Gruden said Seattle’s atmosphere is going to be a challenge, whether “you have a 10-year veteran or a one-game player.”

“We’ve just got to get them ready and Kirk has to do a great job with communicating the snap count and we’ve got to handle the noise,” Gruden said.

When preparing for Seattle’s crowd, the Redskins use music instead of pumping in recordings of crowd noise. Gruden said the noise always sounds like static “and hurts everybody’s ears, so the music is good enough just go with the process of the cadence and all that stuff.”

As for the music that’s being played, Gruden said “a little Guns N’ Roses” was mixed in for him. 

“They didn’t play any country for me or anything exciting, but it was all right,” Gruden said.


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