Brian Orakpo says his preference remains to re-sign with Redskins

December 4, 2013

Brian Orakpo, sacking Eli Manning on Sunday night, is one of seven current Redskins’ defensive starters eligible for unrestricted free agency this offseason. (Ricky Carioti/The Washington Post)

With four games left until the end of the final season on his contract with the Washington Redskins, linebacker Brian Orakpo said Wednesday that his preference remains to re-sign with the team.

“Absolutely,” Orakpo said at Redskins Park. “Right now this is home. So I would love to continue to finish my career as a Redskin. Obviously we’re 3-9 so it’s a disappointing season. But that doesn’t take away from what I know we’re capable of. If we get our core guys back, add a few people here and there with all the money that we’re receiving back from all the salary cap issues that we had, I think we’ll be up for running at another title shot again the following year. But like I said, we’ve got to finish this last quarter and then everything else will take care of itself with the contracts and with who’s here, who’s not, stuff like that.”

Orakpo is one of seven current Redskins defensive starters eligible for unrestricted free agency in the offseason. Orakpo is making a strong case for a significant contract. He had two sacks in Sunday night’s loss to the New York Giants. He has 5 1/2 sacks in the past four games and 8 1/2 sacks on the season.

“It’s just coming at a good time, the second half of the season,” Orakpo said. “I haven’t really changed my game. Like I said, it’s just finally [being] able to get the plays that I want. I’ve just got to continue to play at a very high level for my defense and try and win some ballgames in the last quarter of the season.”

Orakpo said his contract situation has not been on his mind.

“I wish you could be inside my head, man,” he said. “I honestly do not care about the contract situation. I don’t care. I really don’t stress about it, worry about it, because I’m fine. Like I said, last quarter of the season, I want to finish strong and everything will take care of itself.”

He acknowledged that after suffering tears of the same pectoral muscle in each of the previous two seasons, he still had mental obstacles related to those injuries to overcome in this season’s early stages.

“Anybody that tells you when you’re coming off a significant injury that they’re fine, this and that, we’re just saying that,” Orakpo said. “In all honesty, it is a mental thing because you don’t want to be put in that same situation. Especially me being a defender and simple stuff I did and I tore my pec — I was kind of favoring it at times. I just didn’t want to go through that same experience and miss a whole season again. So it took me a while to get accustomed to things. It took me a while to get my tackling better, everything, just everything, be more physical … because at times I was favoring it like I didn’t want to.”

Have a Redskins question? E-mail Mike Jones at mike.jones@washpost.com with the subject line “Mailbag question” for him to answer it in The Mailbag on Tuesdays.

What’s ahead:

● Injury updates.

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Follow: @MikeJonesWaPo | @MarkMaske | @Insider | Insider on Facebook

Mark Maske covers the NFL for The Washington Post.
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