Jay Gruden tells Redskins’ Pierre Garcon to get to work

(Toni L. Sandys/The Washington Post)
(Toni L. Sandys/The Washington Post)

Pierre Garcon’s first interaction with his new coach came from the set of “Fox Football Daily,” where Garcon was a scheduled guest on Thursday evening.

Of course, it just so happened that the Redskins hired Jay Gruden on Thursday, and producers lined up a Gruden interview, and so Garcon got to be on a panel of men asking questions to his new coach. He only offered up one question.

“When do we have to show up?” Garcon asked.

“Shouldn’t you be running routes right now or lifting weights?” Gruden replied. “I mean, seriously. Get out of the studio and go run a route.”

The next question came from a former player, Ronde Barber, who was on the Bucs when Gruden was a coach there.

“Jay, you spent those three years as coordinator in Cincy, all those years in Tampa with me,” Barber began. “You think you’re ready for this opportunity? You ready to be a head coach in the NFL?”

“I sure hope so, Ronde,” Gruden said. “You know, I’m going to give it my best shot. One thing I’m going to do is just try to be myself. I’m not gonna try to be my brother or Joe Gibbs or anybody else; I just want to be Jay Gruden and give it my best shot, and hopefully that’s good enough. I want the players to come in and buy in; I want the assistant coaches to be the best coaches, the best leaders that we can hire, and let’s go forward and forget about the past. Let’s move on to 2014.”

Still later, Gruden was asked about RGIII, and gave him yet another endorsement.

“He had a great rookie season, he came off an injury in his second year, had some issues here and there, but I know what kind of competitor he is by watching him,” Gruden said. “I know he came back from a serious injury, I know he’s a good leader, I know he can throw a good deep ball, a good intermediate ball, he’s got good speed. I don’t know what else you’re looking for in a quarterback. So I want to give him every opportunity to succeed. We’ve got good players around him.  Let’s surround him with good players, take a little bit of pressure off him and not make it just about RGIII but make it about the Washington Redskins.”

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Dan Steinberg writes about all things D.C. sports at the D.C. Sports Bog.
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Dan Steinberg · January 10

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