Redskins

Raheem Morris: Meriweather Our ‘Intimidator’ & ‘Barnyard Bully’

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Calvin Johnson #81 of the Detroit Lions breaks a tackle by Brandon Meriweather #31 of the Washington Redskins and scores a touchdown in the fourth quarter at FedExField on September 22, 2013 in Landover, Maryland. Detroit won the game 27-20. (Credit: Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

Calvin Johnson #81 of the Detroit Lions breaks a tackle by Brandon Meriweather #31 of the Washington Redskins and scores a touchdown in the fourth quarter at FedExField on September 22, 2013 in Landover, Maryland. Detroit won the game 27-20. (Credit: Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

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WASHINGTON (CBSDC) - Washington’s secondary coach Raheem Morris calls Brandon Meriweather – who was suspended one game after administering two questionable hits on Bears’ receivers – the Redskins’ “intimidator” and “barnyard bully.”

Talking with 106.7 The Fan’s Grant Paulsen on Wednesday, Morris emphasized the importance of keeping his guys current on the rules and what constitutes a legal hit, as the NFL continues to enforce a tighter and tighter tackling window.

“The only thing you can do is coach ‘em up based on what the rules are right now, and obviously you can’t hit a guy above the neck area, and that’s what you’re trying to coach right now,” Morris said. “Hit lower. But obviously the lower you lower your target, the lower they lower their target.”

“You talk about Brandon Meriweather coming out there being our intimidator, being our guy that’s supposed to go out there and deliver big hits for us, legally, obviously, and he’s been doing those things,” he said. “And sometimes you get caught up in the emotions of the game, you forget that. And he’s been doing a great job tackling for us and doing those things. He’s kind of our barnyard bully.”

Related: Josh Wilson Defends Brandon Meriweather Hits

“So sometimes mistakes happen, and you can’t avoid those ones, but you can do your best to try. And he’s done a great job really all year of doing that,” Morris continued. “You know he had the two big hits this year in the Chicago game, where one was I think deemed legal, and that’s why it was ruled down to a one-game suspension rather than the initial two.”

“And coming out last week and having the ability to play, and I love the aggression that he brought to the game,” Morris praised Meriweather’s 6-tackle-performance against the Chargers, his first game back from suspension. “He didn’t lose any of his demeanor, he didn’t lose any of his barnyard bully, playing within the rules and not getting called for any illegal hits.”

“You know, initially you’re upset. You say you gotta go low, you don’t want to take out a guy’s legs,” Morris said of Meriweather’s initial reaction after receiving the suspension, to which he viscerally responded: “You just gotta go low now, man. You gotta end people career. You gotta tear people ACL and mess up people knees.”

“He doesn’t want to take out a guy’s legs and that was his point, rather than saying he’d have to cut people out,” Morris defended him. “But nobody gets those things unless you deal with that guy on a day-to-day basis, and he’s trying to hit guys where they want to be hit: up top, high and legal, get ‘em on the ground and do the best that he can do.”

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