Breaking Burgundy caught up with DeShazor Everett on Friday, shortly after the corner-turned-safety helped his chances of making the Redskins' Week 1 roster.
LANDOVER, MD - Deshazor Everett
has an uphill climb at the safety position, but it is not out the realm of possibility that he could make the Washington Redskins
' final 53-man roster. The former Texas A&M defensive back had a really solid game Friday night against the New York Jets
, forcing a fumble and making a big tackle on special teams.
"The coaches were telling guys to step up and play like the [starters] played," Everett told Breaking Burgundy in the Redskins' locker room following Washington's second preseason game.
The Redskins will likely keep four safeties and the top three are pretty much settled: DeAngelo Hall, David Bruton and Duke Ihenacho. Veteran Will Blackmon has the edge over Everett, 24, and rookie Geno Matis-Smith because of his seniority. But Everett's youth, potential and special teams ability could force the team to make a tough decision.
"I try not to count numbers," the second-year defender said. "I just go out there every day and work hard. That's all you can do. Regardless of what the numbers are, you're putting out film for 31 other teams."
Everett was cut prior to the Redskins' final 53-man roster was finalized last year. However, the special teams standout was promptly added to the practice squad and later promoted to the active roster in October.
"Special teams is definitely an area that helped me get on the team last year," said Everett. "So I know I have to continue and improve on that this year."
Blackmon, 31, and Everett are making the transition to safety. The younger player gained some experience playing the position while with the Aggies and has performed well so far in his second preseason, thanks in part to his physical nature.
"I'm not the biggest guy, but I definitely like to hit people as it's something I grew up doing," he said. "If I don't know how to do anything else, I definitely know how to go and stick my nose in traffic."
Although Blackmon had an interception that was hand-wrapped by Jets quarterback Geno Smith
on Friday night, he struggled big time against Atlanta in the first preseason game. If there's a case to be made for Everett over Blackmon, it's headlined by his age and special teams ability. But Everett knows that in order to be trusted at safety, he must prove himself to be mentally reliable at the position.
"As far as just knowing the calls and communicating a lot, that's the biggest thing for me," he said. "I'm still learning everything. Coach has been telling me to communicate. Learning the defense and knowing what everyone else is supposed to do is key."
Everett may have a tough task ahead him, but he's a hard worker with good traits. It'll be interesting to see if he's able to obtain a spot.
You can find Emmanual on Twitter @manny_benton.
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