With second-year player Su’a Cravens now out for the season, the Redskins have a vacancy at the safety position. With one slot filled by D.J. Swearinger, the Redskins need to solidify the second slot in the defensive backfield by either Deshazor Everett or Montae Nicholson. Nicholson earned the starting role Sunday against the Los Angeles Rams and had a solid outing for the most part.
The fourth-round draft pick has impressed the coaching staff since first stepping foot on the field in early August for training camp. Nicholson sat down with ESPN 980’s Steve Czaban Wednesday afternoon to discuss how he played Sunday, the speed of the game, and his role as a safety.
On how he thinks he played in his first start: “Fairly well, missed a tackle, few other things I can clean up but for the first start not too bad.”
On how the speed of the NFL has affected him, is it what he expected: “Almost what I expected it’s pretty fast but not that bad, and I can say that because my teammates and my coaches have made it easier for me putting me in positions that aren’t really taxing and allowing me to go out there and play ball.”
On what is the most important aspect of playing safety: “Making your calls in my opinion. It’s not just so you can get lined up correctly, it’s so your linebacker to your side and your corner to your side know what’s going on and they’re in the right spot to make the plays that we need to make.”
On why he is making a call, in addition to Mason Foster making a call: “Our(safeties) call is kind of like a sub-call so to speak, so we’ll get a call from the defense and he’ll make the strength and then I kind of go off of him.”
Nicholson acknowledged he plays both free and strong safety, he explained the difference between the two: “I believe in our system it’s just who is in the box more, our strong safety is in the box a lot because he’s covering down on tight ends, free safeties we’re in the post covering down on receivers. It’s really not that big of a difference other than the strong safety is just in the box a little bit more.”
Nicholson has an opportunity to cement himself as the Redskins starting safety alongside Swearinger, he’s been limited this week in practice due to a shoulder injury, but I fully expect him to earn the starting role in the weeks to come for Washington.
What are your thoughts on the defense two weeks in? Will Nicholson be the long-term solution at safety? Let us know your thoughts and comment below