Reporting Grant Paulsen
John Beck and Rex Grossman both want to quarterback the Washington Redskins in 2011 and each is going about solidifying the No. 1 role in very different ways.
Beck has been outspoken about his desire to run Washington’s offensive huddle. Grossman has been much more reserved. He’s done less interviews than his positional adversary and he’s also spent less time communicating with his teammates.
In the three-plus weeks since the NFL Draft, Beck’s spent time photo-copying his play-book and mailing pages to rookie running backs Roy Helu and Evan Royster. They weren’t able to visit Redskins Park after being drafted in late-April because of the ongoing NFL lockout, so Beck decided to serve as a long-distance tutor.
Beck even chauffeured and hosted third-round pick Leonard Hankerson in California earlier this month, inviting the rookie to spend some time near his San Diego home while the rookie was out West for an unrelated event. The two spent time playing catch and studying Kyle Shanahan’s passing scheme.
But Grossman hasn’t been throwing passes to the Redskins’ newly drafted rookies or shipping any play-books to his teammates over the past few weeks.
Instead, the 30-year-old quarterback has been training on his own and keeping relatively quiet. Grossman says that not being under contract to return to Washington has nothing to do with how he’s decided to spend his offseason.
“I just didn’t feel the urgency,” Grossman said on Tuesday at the Redskins’ player-run mini camp when asked why he hasn’t made a concerted effort to take control of Washington’s offense.
“To be able to talk to them on the phone is great and all, but this is where we’re going to get a chance to show them the offense, show them how to run the routes. There’s plenty of time for that.”
Grossman went on to add that, “all the other extra stuff that sounds good is what it is.” Whether or not the former Chicago Bear and Houston Texan was speaking about Beck when he made that comment is for you to determine.
What isn’t up for debate is that Beck is doing “the other extra stuff” that Grossman spoke of.
“I just tried to put myself in their shoes,” Beck said after Tuesday’s workout, which 41 players attended.
“If I was a rookie that just got drafted, I would have wanted somebody to call me and say ‘hey this is the plan. This is when we’re getting together. This is what our offense looks like. Let me send you something so you can start looking at it.’”
Despite the contrasting styles of the two quarterbacks expected to compete for the Redskins’ starting job, the team wont actually have a quarterback controversy until Grossman is under contract.
While he’s expected to re-sign for a second season in Washington, the Redskins won’t be able to discuss a new deal with him until the NFL re-opens for business.
So you can’t call it a quarterback competition just yet. But it certainly looks like there is going to be one. Will Beck’s leadership efforts help him in his quest to win the job? Who knows. But making an attempt to win the trust of his teammates certainly can’t hurt him.