What we saw: Observations from Redskins OTAs

Thoughts on the final OTA session include Kirk Cousins overpowering the wind, a running back impressing the head coach and lineup adjustments.

ASHBURN, Va. -- The Redskins wrapped up their third week of Organized Team Activities on Wednesday. Here are five observations as the schedule now shifts to mandatory practices starting with next week's three-day mini-camp.

  • If George Costanza attended Wednesday's practice, good bet he drops a "The wind was angry that day my friends" line. Strong gusts consistently blew, forcing goalposts to sway and onlookers to put on jackets in June. The wind did nothing to slow down Kirk Cousins as the Redskins quarterback powered accurate throws all over the field. He pumped a strike to Jamison Crowder cutting down the middle. He threw a dart to Ryan Grant in the corner of the end zone. Cousins raced to Grant following the completion, screaming "Gimme five." Last week the throws from the starting quarterback were erratic. On Wednesday they were on target and thrown with purpose.

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  • Coach Jay Gruden previously stated the challenge assessing the running game considering the lack of hitting. Yet Gruden recognized an impressive run by projected starter Matt Jones. After following the blocking plan to the left, Jones noticed a hole on the right side. One assertive cut later and the second-year back was in the clear. "That's a hell of a run, big boy," Gruden screamed.

  • We can never know for sure why the coaching staff line up players in this formation or with that grouping. Therefore, consider this mention of Dashaun Phillips and Lynden Trail receiving reps with starters as just an observation. For Phillips, it's the second straight week he served as the fifth defensive back when the Redskins used their base nickel packages. Washington's secondary is jammed with options and there isn't enough room at the Inn for all, which is why it's at least worth noting Phillips is the one receiving this work. As for Trail, the massive linebacker joined the primary back-7 starters during some 7-on-7 drills.

  • Spencer Long remains in the mix for a starting spot on the offensive line, but the where remains unclear. Long worked at center behind Kory Lichtensteiger while Arie Kounandjio picked up snaps at left guard as Shawn Lauvao continues his rehab. If Lauvao is ready for training camp and shows the impressive form he displayed before his season-ending ankle injury in Week 3, the Redskins may have Long take over at center. He'll need significant improvement with his communication before the coach's feel comfortable making that move. "That’s going to be the biggest transition for him in addition to just getting comfortable snapping the football, whether it be from underneath the center or in the shotgun," offensive coordinator Sean McVay said. "That’s where you see the biggest transition for those guys that bump inside from playing that guard position.”

  • DeSean Jackson's return to Redskins Park ended up being a two-day reunion as the wide receiver skipped the final session. Gruden continued downplaying the absence and instead praised Jackson's conditioning despite missing the first two weeks of the non-mandatory practices. All must attend next week's three-day mini-camp so this storyline ends other than Jackson potentially speaking with the local media for the first time this offseason. Other notables on the offensive side not participating included tight end Jordan Reed (rest) and tackle Trent Williams (illness). Rookie receiver Josh Doctson (Achilles) remain limited.

http://www.scout.com/nfl/redskins/story/1676949-josh-doctson-remains-pat...

Ben Standig is the Publisher of Breaking Burgundy and the Huddle Report's 2012 NFL Mock Draft champion. You can find him on Twitter @benstandig and on Google+.

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