“I’m gonna shy away from that,” Hall told Johnson. “I don’t need no more heat. Like I said man, we’re on the right track right now. We’ll take it one game at a time.”
And while Hall didn’t make any predictions during a Thursday appearance on NFL Network, his language was a bit more grandiose.
“It’s just a whole different mentality,” Hall said, when asked to compare this year’s defense with last year’s version. “It’s a mentality of greatness; we want to be great. We want to compare ourselves to those Baltimore defenses and Pittsburgh defenses. And with another year under our belt running this scheme, I think a lot of guys have bought into it and we understand it a lot better, and I think it’s showing. I think the proof’s in the pudding. It’s definitely showing out there.”
And what of Grossman, who like Hall is often criticized in public forums?
“There’s always going to be criticism coming from all ends, no matter if you’re the quarterback, no matter if you’re myself,” Hall said. “But for Rex, I think he understands it so much more because he’s been through it. In Chicago, he kind of went through all of that. But I think he’s grown up so much as a player and as a person, he understands what’s required of him. We’re not asking him to go out here and throw for 400, 500 yards; we just want him to manage the game, make plays when he’s supposed to make em, and help protect the ball. And he’s done a great job of that so far this season and hopefully he’ll continue to do that.”
Hall also said that last year’s embarrassing home loss to the Eagles does not need to be discussed inside the Redskins’ locker room.
“You know what, if you can’t get focused from that beatdown they put on us last time, we have a problem,” Hall said. “I think everybody in this building and in our locker room is definitely focused. We understand the task that’s at hand. We don’t look at this team as being a 1-4 team; we look at this team as being a team who beat the mess out of us last year. And we definitely feel like they’re going to come out here with their backs against the wall. They feel like they need this win and we’re going to get every trick play they have, every great effort from every guy they have out there.”