Every season, a new class of draft picks and undrafted free agents are signed during the preseason. The majority of these players will never be on the roster for a regular season game, but the few diamond in the rough late round/UDFA players who do bring hope to players and fans. That racetrack betting slip that you find on the floor that someone didn't scout properly.
Redskins fans are very familiar with the hype that comes with the offseason, especially over the last two decades of dreary seasons. Between the overpriced free agent signings, and the overhyped preseason performances by rookies, we were the perennial offseason champions. Names like Marko Mitchell, Marcus Mason, Brandon Banks, and everyone's favorite Colt Brennan became legendary in training camp and preseason, only to be relegated to the practice squad or the bowels of the depth chart, never to be heard from again. Last year's preseason hero was Alfred Morris who rose up due to injury and necessity after being deemed a practice squad candidate by many, and we all know how that turned out.
Hype is a very real, and very exciting part of football in the preseason. We all read the daily training camp reports and get excited at the prospect of a late round pass rusher getting sack after sack on 3rd string offensive lineman, or a wide receiver catching everything thrown his way, or a running back who's not injured.
The Mason/Brennan award has been given out unofficially by the fans for years to each preseason's most hyped players, but now we're going to make it official, and bring it to a vote. This week's vote will cover the hype following the Week 2 preseason game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Place your vote for who you feel has been the most hyped player up to this point, whether the hype is deserved or not. After each preseason game a new vote will be taken to see how the hype changes.
1. Player must have been drafted late or signed by the Redskins as an undrafted free agent. Players that have only been on other teams practice squads that are signed by the team are also eligible.
2. A player that has been on the team for several years is still eligible if most of that time has been spent on the practice squad, inactive, or with very limited productivity/time
3. The Pat White Rule: High draft picks(busts/out of the league) from other teams who have never completed an NFL pass, but can run the read option/wildcat are now eligible.
The second official Mason/Brennan Award winner was crowned. Pat White took full advantage of the Pat White rule this week. His magical performance was enough to steal the award and start talks of trading/cutting everyone ahead of him to keep him in the Burgundy and Gold. Pat White, we salute you.
I have added two players this week, Jawan Jamison and Will Compton, for getting playing time in a preseason game and/or getting noticed. Jamison was removed the previous week, but has finally been spotted on an NFL field. As usual vote for the person you feel has the most hype for this week, and any new nominees are welcome in the comments.
1. Will Compton, ILB - UDFA(2013) Looked lost at times, but also tied for the lead in tackles vs the Steelers with 3. His nomination comes from reports of a white DB knowing how to tackle properly. It turns out the player in question was Compton, an ILB, so we're sorry Ken, the next great white safety has not arrived yet.
2. Jawan Jamison, RB - 7th round draft pick(2013) who saw his first carries of the preseason against the Steelers. He was getting hype Pre-Training Camp as a candidate for the #2 RB spot. He finished the game with 5 carries for 20 yards, and cries that his TD run was stolen by Roy Helu Jr.
1. Skye Dawson, WR - UDFA(2013) Skye has turned from a possible diamond in the rough receiver/returner who caught everything against limited defense to Brandon Banks 1.6 in 2 weeks. This will of course end with him returning one for a TD in the preseason, making the team, and giving out fashion advice at the clubs.
2. Chase Minnifield, CB - UDFA(2012) Already has a place reserved in the Redskins Ring of Fame. Continues to have a solid offseason with his aggressive play. He did give up a huge pass against the Steelers fastest receiver, but that might not be enough to keep him from winning his first Mason/Brennan.
3. Aldrick Robinson, WR - 6th round draft pick(2011). Aldrick got the RGIII hype bump from training camp. He claims to be the fastest player on the team and that could be true. He has been working on his route running, and not being labeled a one trick pony. One long bomb TD in the preseason from Sexy Rexy could steal the vote any given week.
4. Brandon Jenkins, OLB - 5th round draft pick(2013) who was impressing in training camp reports and now has impressed in both preseason games. Using Jenkins and Orakpo as OLB with Kerrigan crashing in as a DE has fans dreaming of huge sacks. The Nasty Nickel package will make Jenkins a huge fan favorite.
5. Chris Thompson, RB - 5th round draft pick(2013) who finally saw the field after an on again, off again love affair with the Malcolm Kelly Memorial stationary bike. It was a disappointing outing for the walking bandaid who coughed up the ball after getting hit by a Sharknado.
6. Bacarri Rambo, FS - 6th round draft pick(2013) who is being penciled in as the starting FS week 1, and the 2nd highest selling jersey on the team by Week 2. His second preseason game was another mixed bag, with missed tackles that led to some friendly advice from former Redskin Ryan Clark. He also caused a fumble to keep the hype alive.
7. Tom Compton, OT - 6th round draft pick(2012) Some of the RT hype has died down, but there are still plenty of people who would prefer him to the usher, Tyler Polumbus. The Polumbus Effect gets worse by the week.
8. Xavier Nixon, OT - UDFA(2013) who was the crown jewel of the 2013 UDFA Redskins class. Hyped as another possible dark horse to win the RT job. The Polumbus Effect Part II.
9. Pat White, QB - Former 2nd round draft pick who has been out of the league for a few years. Came to the team as a beacon of hope to the Anti-Sexy crowd. Had a slightly less magical performance against the Steelers, but there have been Pat White Redskins jersey sightings...Pat White Redskins jerseys.
10. Lance Lewis, WR - UDFA(2012) Lewis reportedly looked good in camp last season, but an injury derailed his year. He followed up a good game against Tennessee with a 1 catch, 10 yard performance against the Steelers. Dezmon Briscoe's possible replacement as the 6th receiver, he just needs to prove the team needs a 6th WR.