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Thread: OK St. Coach Gundy on Wash n Rud

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by RuthlessBurgher View Post
    James Washington a 'workhorse' for Steelers and family farm

    8:00 AM ET

    Jeremy Fowler
    ESPN Staff Writer

    PITTSBURGH -- James Washington has an exercise for developing strong receiving hands that even Antonio Brown doesn't try on social media: changing the tires on a 6E Series John Deere tractor.

    Years of handling that clunky jack underneath multi-ton farm machinery always got Washington right for game days.

    "It teaches you to hold leverage, put your shoulder into it and shove it," said Washington, the Pittsburgh Steelers' second-round pick. "Flip the tire up and lean it against the tractor, then you kind of want to wiggle it on there."

    Before Washington learned to do it all on the field for Oklahoma State, he had to do it all in the fields of north Texas.

    As a teenager in Stamford, Texas, with a population of less than 3,000, Washington spent countless hours helping his father on farms, one of which is family-owned in nearby Lexington.

    Washington's dad would return from his day job at TxDot highway patrol, change clothes, put his boots on and hop into an old diesel truck with his son.

    Farming isn't a convenient storyline for the Steelers' rookie wide receiver, but it is a way of life.

    "My dad's a one-man job, so when he's out plowing and stuff, I'm usually in the barn cleaning up, changing tires on the tractors, air conditioning belts on tractors, changing the oil," said Washington, whose family farms count wheat and cotton as its primary resources. "I'm just kind of like the workhorse. If anything needs to be heavy lifted or anything needs worked on then I'm the guy."

    From love for the family dog, a blue heeler named Cowboy, to appreciating the wheat-planting process, Washington quickly took to the farming life as a child.

    The family figured putting him to work would build character.

    "He likes to be outside in the wide open," said Washington's mother, Chrysta. "He fell in love with it. We always said one day, if this is something you're looking at, we'll do some serious farming."

    Washington majored in agricultural farming at Oklahoma State, where he set a school record of 4,472 receiving yards. He credits farming strength for his ability to make contested catches. Despite his 5-foot-11, 213-pound frame, Washington has long legs and high hips, which, according to Cowboys offensive coordinator Mike Yurcich, helps him play like he's 6-3.

    The Steelers are known for their track record drafting receivers, and their latest project isn't lacking in blue-collar pedigree, even if big-city living might be an adjustment.

    Washington's idea of a good time this summer is restoring a 1986 Chevy C10 wide bed and cruising through local parking lots.

    "When you drive to Walmart and someone sees you, they say, 'Hey, nice truck' -- it makes you feel good because you put in all the hard work to get that," Washington said.

    Pittsburgh has plenty of Walmarts and footballs to go around in the Steelers' offense. Washington figures to be a deep threat alongside Brown and JuJu Smith-Schuster.

    He'll approach that job like an afternoon session back home.

    "He's more gracious due to the fact that he knows where food sources come from and he understands hard work," Chrysta said.

    http://www.espn.com/blog/pittsburgh-steelers/post/_/id/28163/james-washington-a-workhorse-for-steelers-and-family-farm
    Washington is one of the rookies I'm most looking forward to seeing on the field.

    Based on the article, it seems his family "planted" some work ethic and character in him.

  2. #22
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    I look forward to Smith-Schuster and Washington upholding the tradition of great Steelers WRs...Brown can’t keep it up forever...
    Actually, my post was NOT about you...but, if the shoe fits, feel free to lace that &!+# up and wear it.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oviedo View Post
    Washington is one of the rookies I'm most looking forward to seeing on the field.

    Based on the article, it seems his family "planted" some work ethic and character in him.
    I'm also looking forward to see if he can play. But it's puff piece season, so I try not to get too worked up about articles like this (or ones saying Dupree will be contending for DPOY).

  4. #24
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    Steelers need to find a slot receiver

    Posted by Mike Florio on July 9, 2018, 9:31 AM EDT

    The Steelers have two great outside receivers in Antonio Brown and JuJu Smith-Schuster. Beyond that, the depth chart is unsettled.

    The biggest question mark, as noted by Joe Rutter of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, comes at the slot position.

    Yes, Smith-Schuster could operate from the slot, if the team feels comfortable with rookie second-rounder James Washington in an outside role.

    Veteran candidates include Justin Hunter and Darrius Heyward-Bey. Rutter thinks Marcus Tucker, a practice-squad player in 2017, could earn a roster spot specifically to play in the slot.

    Then there’s Eli Rogers, who suffered a torn ACL in the playoff loss to the Jaguars and who is still looking for work. The Steelers could bring him back, and he could earn reps in the three-receiver set.

    Whoever gets the gig should have favorable matchups, given the attention that will be paid to Brown and Smith-Schuster. Which will put even more pressure on the slot receiver to perform.

    https://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2018/07/09/steelers-need-to-find-a-slot-receiver/
    "The Terrible Towel is poised to strike...and boy, did he strike!" -Myron Cope

  5. #25
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    Study and Netflix: Like college for Steelers rookie dorm mates

    8:00 AM ET

    Jeremy Fowler
    ESPN Staff Writer

    PITTSBURGH -- James Washington and Mason Rudolph became an elite offensive duo at Oklahoma State by always staying in rhythm.

    Rudolph might have taken that process a little too far in the dorms of Saint Vincent College, where the Pittsburgh Steelers rookies share a room.

    "He has this machine that makes these sounds -- it plays, like, the ocean and tropical rains," Washington said. "I guess it makes him sleep better."

    Apparently Rudolph has noise to block out, too.

    "He snores," a smirking Rudolph said of Washington. "I try to sleep."

    The Steelers have paired Washington and Rudolph as roommates dating back to organized team activities. Familiarity made this an easy call. The duo put on a weekly NCAA light show the past three seasons with nearly 4,000 yards and 33 touchdowns. The Steelers liked the tandem so much that they used back-to-back draft picks on Washington (No. 60 overall) and Rudolph (No. 79).

    All those yards don't matter now for two rookies trying to master an NFL playbook inside a dorm with sterile white brick walls, with fewer amenities than the SpringHill Suites that housed them in May and June.

    Between team meetings and Netflix sessions -- and well before Rudolph's nightly sleep-science kick -- the two will quiz each other on the next day's offensive menu, from "seven shots" goal-line work, a Mike Tomlin favorite, to two-minute drills.

    "[Rudolph] will start showing signals and I'll blurt them out," Washington said. "If I don't know, he'll answer them. It's just exchanging information. It helps us learn this offense a little better together. And we're able to do the things that the 1s (starters) do because we know signals and how to interact with each other."

    They share a bathroom with rookie safeties Terrell Edmunds and Marcus Allen in a two-bedroom setup, which helps Rudolph get to know new teammates while strengthening his relationship with the old one.

    "[Washington] was always at my place or I was always at his place in college, so I think at this point I need to learn more about my other teammates because I know pretty much everything about James," Rudolph said. "So we're always coming back and forth between rooms. You’re not in the room much, so when you are, you’ve got a TV, maybe watch something on the iPad."

    Rudolph knows Washington has an affinity for cars -- he spent part of the summer souping up a Chevy C10 back home in Stamford, Texas -- so it's no surprise Washington ends most nights watching "Fastest Car" on Netflix, a show for true gearheads.

    Washington's wheels spun around the Steelers' practice field late last week for multiple big plays with different quarterbacks. He snagged a one-handed catch behind his back and a 50-yard bomb from Josh Dobbs. Getting some first-team run while Antonio Brown and JuJu Smith-Schuster were held out, Washington converted two touchdowns in the corner of the end zone delivered by Ben Roethlisberger.

    The Steelers drafted Washington to help offset the loss of Martavis Bryant, who was traded to the Oakland Raiders for a third-round pick. With long legs and a graceful leap, Washington never has had a problem going deep. But learning the basics of the offense with Rudolph has helped take the thinking out of the game in real time.

    "You have to win with fundamentals, because everyone is athletic here," Washington said. "It's all coming along."

    Rudolph, too, is improving, finishing the weekend strongly after experiencing ball-security issues early in camp. His touch pass to streaking tight end Jesse James in Sunday's short-yardage drill was slick. He went 5-of-6 with an across-the-middle touchdown to Jaylen Samuels in a two-minute drill against a mix of first-, second- and third-string defenders.

    While Washington is tasked with producing for the offense now, Rudolph is a play for the future, a possible successor to Roethlisberger sometime in the next three to five years.

    That's why Rudolph finds himself forcing the issue with other receivers, because he knows Washington will always be exactly where he needs him.

    "I can go out there and say get James the ball and I know where he’d be and how his body moves," Rudolph said.

    The August roster push requires both to remain well-rested, even if the approaches vary.

    "I'm not as serious as he is with it," Washington said with a laugh. "I try to get at least eight hours, though."

    http://www.espn.com/blog/pittsburgh-steelers/post/_/id/28317/study-and-netflix-like-college-for-steelers-rookie-dorm-mates
    "The Terrible Towel is poised to strike...and boy, did he strike!" -Myron Cope

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel Maniac View Post
    I have a real good feeling about Washington's future with us.
    no reason not to...steelers are the class of drafting and developing WRs right now. Very few blemishes on their record....sweed and wheaton? thats kind of incredible when you think about all the WRs drafted and developed into quality pro WRs over the last decade or so

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by K Train View Post
    no reason not to...steelers are the class of drafting and developing WRs right now. Very few blemishes on their record....sweed and wheaton? thats kind of incredible when you think about all the WRs drafted and developed into quality pro WRs over the last decade or so
    Im not sure Wheaton should be named with Sweed. Wheaton's string of injuries led to his downfall. He was fairly productive prior to his last injury. Sweed never saw the field to begin with... if memory serves.

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ernie View Post
    Im not sure Wheaton should be named with Sweed. Wheaton's string of injuries led to his downfall. He was fairly productive prior to his last injury. Sweed never saw the field to begin with... if memory serves.
    not the same, but both disappointing careers. Sweed on a different level of failure with 7 career receptions but wheaton disappointing nonetheless even if he has a legit excuse with injury

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by K Train View Post
    not the same, but both disappointing careers. Sweed on a different level of failure with 7 career receptions but wheaton disappointing nonetheless even if he has a legit excuse with injury
    Id agree with disappointing....

    if that's the case we should throw Manny Sanders in there... he and Wheaton had similar #s while in Pitt. Manny reached a different level only after arriving at Denver.

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