Jay Gruden is definitely out to prove himself in his first season as head coach of the Washington Redskins. Finally getting his chance at leading an NFL team after years in the coaching business, he’s out to prove himself early on with one of the more talented teams in the league. And he’s apparently being very tough on them. Well, at least tougher than Mike Shanahan was during his tenure.
According to a report from Jeff Darlington who is on location at Redskins camp, the sessions under Gruden are indeed tougher than the ones they conducted under Shanahan, whom the team let go following last season.
At Redskins camp, @JeffDarlington says ‘physicality’ is the primary focus under Gruden. Tougher practices than under Shanahan.
— NFL: AroundTheLeague (@NFL_ATL) July 27, 2014
With RG III apparently back to full health this season, and the acquisition of DeSean Jackson, there’s a lot that’s expected of this team this season, so there is a lot of pressure on Gruden to perform well with this squad early on. So you could see why he would have some extra initiative in his practices.
The focus on physicality also isn’t much of a surprise, given how poor this team played on the defensive side of the ball last year. Despite that, though, he’s being smart about it, as he’s already told hard-hitting safety Brandon Meriweather to cool it with the high hits that he’s infamous for.