Lorenzo Alexander, Ryan Kerrigan reflect on first Pro Bowl appearance

You see him on TV, doing all these commercials, and you actually talk to him and see, Wow, hes a regular guy, just like me. Alexander wound up playing extensively at inside linebacker as well as on special teams. He said it became apparent early in the week that he would get a chance to play on defense as well. He made the most of the opportunity by leading the NFC with five tackles. It was pretty easy, picking up a different defense, Alexander said. We only had four calls. Two were Cover-3, and the other two were man.

Kerrigan enjoying ‘Skins’ success

“We had a bunch of injuries and you saw that in the way our defense played,” Kerrigan said. “But as guys were able to fill in more comfortably, and adapt to the defense and get more comfortable with the repetitions, you saw us improve. And now we’ll have a lot of depth this year.” The injuries forced an accelerated maturation for Kerrigan, who was in his second season as a linebacker after playing defensive end, and being an All-American, at Purdue. It went exceedingly well, with the 6-foot-4, 260-pounder making 54 tackles and 8.5 sacks and being named to his first Pro Bowl. “It’s been a really fun couple years, especially going from the disappointing end to my rookie year to my second year,” he said.

Contract-Year Player to Watch: Brian Orakpo

January 20th, 2013, 7:57 pm London Fletcher, Ryan Kerrigan Selected To Pro Bowl By ZAC BOYER zboyer@freelancestar.com | @ZacBoyer London Fletcher and Ryan Kerrigan were each named to the NFCs Pro Bowl team on Sunday, meaning four players will represent the Washington Redskins in the NFLs annual all-star game. The linebackers will each make the trip to Honolulu this week to replace San Franciscos Patrick Willis and Aldon Smith, who were originally selected to play in the game but will not be able to after the 49ers defeated Atlanta on Sunday. Fletcher, making his fourth consecutive appearance in the game, had a team-high 139 tackles and intercepted a career-high five passes this past season. He played the final seven games of the season with a high left ankle sprain, occasionally missing practices but never a game. Kerrigan, selected for the first time in his two seasons, had 54 tackles, 8.5 sacks, an interception and a forced fumble in 2012. Running back Alfred Morris was not selected to replace the 49ers Frank Gore despite previously being announced by the team as the first alternate. Instead, that position was held by Tampa Bays Doug Martin, who edged out his fellow rookie for the honor. Left tackle Trent Williams and linebacker Lorenzo Alexander, selected as a special teams player, will join Fletcher and Kerrigan in making the trip.

Purdue’s Russell driven by Den tradition

Washington is currently projected to be somewhere around $30 million under the salary cap for next year, so even if this situation ends with the franchise tag being used on Orakpo (that price was $9.619 million for linebackers in 2013), there ought to be enough wiggle room for the remainder of the roster. Its also safe to assume that the Redskins want to see Orakpo prove he is healthy before handing him a massive contract. The pectoral injury that sidelined him last season first popped up late in 2011, meaning that Orakpo has not been 100 percent for an extended period of time. But if all goes according to plan for Orakpo and the Redskins this season, Washington will not mind ponying up some dough. There is a little bit of an out-of-sight, out-of-mind element at work regarding Orakpo heading into 2013, so it is worth pointing out that he was an absolutely vital part of Washingtons defense for three seasons. In fact, Pro Football Focus graded him out as the teams best defender in 2011, the one year of those three that he did not make the Pro Bowl. For his part, Orakpo is certain he can get back to that level again. He recently told USA Today , Defensive Player of the Year is a goal of mine.

Lichtensteiger camps a success

Above, Kory Lichtensteiger talks to high school campers during the Kory Lichtensteiger Football Camp at Crestview High School Saturday, as members of the camp coaching staff watch on. (Times Bulletin/Brian Bassett)

“Very aware,” Russell told ESPN.com. “A lot of those guys come back, Roosevelt Colvin, I had a chance to talk to Cliff Avril when we went to the Little Caesars [Pizza] Bowl in Detroit. I knew Ryan Kerrigan and he came back and talked to us. “It’s a big tradition, and I’m hoping definitely to uphold it.” After losing defensive tackle Kawann Short, a second-round pick in last month’s NFL draft, Purdue is looking for the next star to emerge along a line that underperformed in 2012. The Boilers finished 78th nationally in both rush yards allowed (182.3 YPG) and sacks recorded (1.69 per game). Along with veteran defensive tackle Bruce Gaston , Russell is viewed as a potential major contributor up front this fall. The 6-foot-5, 275-pound junior will enter his third season as a starter and his first under Purdue’s new coaching staff. After recording 33 tackles and making 11 starts as a redshirt freshman in 2011, Russell had 37 tackles, including 8.5 for loss and four sacks, last season.

London Fletcher, Ryan Kerrigan Selected To Pro Bowl

The camps boasted players Ryan Kerrigan Nike Jersey from 12 school around Northwest Ohio and Northeast Indiana. Lichtensteiger, a Crestview grad and current member of the Washington Redskins, has put on youth camps for the past several years. The 2013 edition brought in eight college coaches and an NFL coach, and even saw a surprise appearance from Redskins Pro Bowl outside linebacker Ryan Kerrigan. Article Comment Submission Form Please feel free to submit your comments. Article comments are not posted immediately to the Web site. Each submission must be approved by the Web site editor, who may edit content for appropriateness. There may be a delay of 24-48 hours for any submission while the web site editor reviews and approves it. Note: All information on this form is required.

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