WASHINGTON — The Redskins gutted through their first day in London by fighting every urge to fall asleep.
After flying out from Dulles Airport at 7:30 p.m. Eastern Time Thursday, the team had all of a seven-hour overnight flight to try and catch some sleep before arriving in London, bleary-eyed and half awake, just before 7 a.m. London time.
But it wasn’t yet time for bed. Around the time folks in Washington were battling morning gridlock, 8:30 a.m stateside, the Redskins were heading into work, too. That’s right. They began their first practice in London around 1:30 p.m. — still sleep deprived — in accordance with their plan to best adjust to the time change, by rigorously sticking to London time.
“We’re trying to keep ’em up, you know, the big thing here,” coach Jay Gruden told reporters from their makeshift practice site, RFC Training Ground, the home field for a local rugby club. “We fought through this day today. Nobody’s really taken a nap yet other than on the plane, so hopefully they’ll go home and watch the tape, and get a nice dinner and go to bed nice and early.”
The hard part is now over.
“The flight over was, it was a nice flight. We had a nice plane and it was very comfortable for the seven hours we were on it, but we got ’em out here,” Gruden said. “It was tough to get ’em out here, get ’em going, get their blood flowing, but they fought through it. They did a good job today. You know, I took a knee and almost took a nap, but it was tough.”
That’s not to say the players had to enjoy going through it.
Redskins owner Dan Snyder appears wide awake, at least.
On the bright side, the Redskins get an hour back the night before their game against the Bengals, as London falls back one hour Sunday at 2 a.m.
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