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Terrelle Pryor is Focused on Opportunity to Prove Himself With Redskins

Terrelle Pryor is Focused on Opportunity to Prove Himself With Redskins

Terrelle Pryor is Focused on Opportunity to Prove Himself With Redskins

The Washington Redskins lost two receivers at the start free agency this year when DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon left the franchise. The Redskins had two choices, they could have overpaid for Garcon and/or Jackson or they could attempt to rebuild the position with a combination of what they already had on the roster and some hand-picked others via free agency or the draft. The Redskins chose to give chase to former Cleveland Browns receiver Terrelle Pryor the day after losing their two stars.

Pryor has a unique set of skills and is ready to prove to the football world that he is a top-notch receiver in the NFL. After signing a one-year ‘prove it’ deal for $8 million, Pryor (6-4, 223 pounds) will now bring his talents to Washington.

Below is a transcript from Pryor’s phone conference interview with reporters on Monday.

On what attracted him to the Redskins:

“I liked the supporting cast that they had, I mean, along with Kirk Cousins being the quarterback still, assuming that he’s going to be there. Whether he was or not, I like the supporting cast – [Jamison] Crowder and [Josh] Doctson coming up, Jordan Reed as well and Vernon Davis. It’s going to put a lot of pressure on defenses. I think that can help out and I think it can help adding myself in there, help us and let us get some wins.”

On if he had any concerns about signing with the Redskins:

“At the end of the day, it’s an opportunity to play in the NFL. I don’t take any of those for granted. I can’t really control or have a say or know what’s going on internally. They’re handling that internally. All I can do is just come in and be ready to be the best teammate I can be and work my butt off and prove I belong. I’m along with them for the journey and what we’re trying to accomplish. I’m right with the other guys on the team. That’s the only thing that I can really control or that I can really talk about.”

On what impressed him about the Redskins and who he heard from first:

“Really it was Jay Gruden’s offense. It was kind of the same thing as my coach back in Cleveland, Hue Jackson. They are very similar. It’s kind of like I can step right into it. There’s going to be different wordings and different phrases that you use, but it could be easy – a lot easier – to pick up, you know, rather than learn a whole different offense. The first person I really heard from… I mean, my agent contacted me and said that the Redskins wanted to meet and have dinner. So, I met with Coach Matt [Cavanaugh], the OC, [Head] Coach Jay Gruden, and [Wide Receivers] Coach Ike [Hilliard]. We had dinner, had a great conversation for about an hour, hour and a half and hit it off. I think you have to get along and really feel each other out right there to be able to make sure I was a good fit. You know, I had a great time meeting Coach Gruden.”

On how the Redskins coaching staff can help his development as a wide receiver:

“I think anytime whether it’s I’m new or it’s my 15th year of experience, at the end of the day, if you go into any season thinking that you can’t learn something or get better or get better at something, that’s when you might as well just call it quits. So, every day, every time I step on the field, every time I meet with my trainer, I’m looking to get better and learn something. I’ll never stop doing that until I’m done playing this game. From Coach Ike [Hilliard] and Coach Jay [Gruden], there’s small things they wanted me to fix and work on – I kind of try to keep that to myself, if you guys don’t mind. But they’re very into it and I learned a lot from talking to them. I believe that they’ll help me get to that next level.”

On if there is pressure to replace DeSean Jackson or Pierre Garçon:

“I don’t really go into it in terms of who I’m going to replace or anything like that. I’m just coming to play my game. I dealt with double teams and different type of stuff last year. There’s no pressure. It’s all about hard work. You win games. You win your matchups today. Today, when I’m in the gym, talking to you guys right now, and I prepared myself by working out yesterday. When you get ready for the upcoming matchups and the great talent that I’m about to be going against during the season – today, tomorrow, etc.  You just continue to do that. You don’t really worry about pressure. You just go out there and play your game and play to the highest level you possibly can.”

On his first full year as a wide receiver:

“I really came along.  I met with a lot of people and I am still learning right now, we can talk about that. I met with my trainer, Randy Moss, and guys of that like, and my coaching staff with the Browns. Definitely… It’s an incredible jump from the offseason workouts in April up until June and I just took a huge leap – leaps and bounds. I just put my head down, to tell you the truth, and just kept grinding at it. That’s all we can do is just working at your craft and I think hard work really gets you that luck.”

On the biggest adjustment in his position change and when he felt comfortable at wide receiver:

“I think the biggest adjustment really was – and there was quite a few – but three things that really stood out to me was the engagement and that battle at the line of scrimmage between myself and corners. I really trained hard with corners and guys that were on teams that would be in Charlotte when I was with Randy Moss – that’s where I trained. We would do a lot of stuff off the line in terms of that and a lot of stuff in terms of hand-eye coordination down the field with bigger guys or heavier guys leaning on me, trying to catch the ball over my shoulders and catching a lot of balls – tennis balls – with my back turned and throwing them at the wall and grabbing it one-handed. I just continued to work hand-eye coordination because it’s a different game playing receiver. You see a little bead coming out of nowhere between defenders and stuff. The game is all about catching the ball and getting separation and keeping it. I think it really turned for me this past offseason. I really took strides. Like I said, it’s all about hard work and what you put into it.”

On if he spoke with the Browns after receiving an offer from the Redskins:

“I don’t want to come off rude or anything, but at the end of the day now, it doesn’t really matter. I’m here and a lot of things that people do is back track. I can’t really go back now and all I can think of is the future with the Redskins this year and being the best teammate and the best player that I can for them. That’s all I can really talk about in terms of free agency.

On playing with CB Josh Norman:

“That’s a great question. I’m very excited, you know, because at the end of the day, iron sharpens iron. I’m not saying whether I’m on his level or I’m not saying anything like that. What I do know is that he’s a competitor and I competed against him at a high level. He competed against me at a high level and he’s a very competitive guy, a very fiery guy. The opportunity to compete with somebody that wants to be great, I mean, I’ll take that every day. I’m very excited about that because I know he’s going to help me and I can help him because I’m going to compete my butt off. I think at the end of the day that’s what helps get your team better.”

On if his height was important to the Redskins and if it can specifically help in the red zone:

“We didn’t really talk that much about that. Obviously in their minds, they’re sharp coaches and they’re very smart. There’s a great quarterback that we have here. I think that stuff will come into effect when we start getting together and really working on team activity stuff.”

On if they have talked about his fit in the offense:

“It’s pretty much just you’ve got to go into it and I think you’ll start feeling it out. They’ll start figuring it out things that I do well. I think we talked a lot about doing things for me that I do well. Obviously, when we get together in the offseason, we’ll have time to work together and get better at things that they think I need to get better at so we could possibly run those things. I think everything is up in the air in terms of that and I’m definitely happy about the opportunity.”

On if he has spoken to his new teammates:

“I’ve spoken to Kirk a little bit, traded text messages back and forth the other night. It was good to meet with him. A couple of the receivers are going to meet with him and start working out together and that’s truly it. I’ve talked to a couple of guys on Twitter and stuff like that. They welcomed me. I’m really excited to meet my new teammates, I really am. I can’t wait to get to work with these guys.”

On why so many free agents are opting for one-year deals:

“That’s a good question. I think, overall, maybe the guys are marked in terms of where they are supposed to be or where we thought it would be. I think, at the end of the day, that you want to prove yourself. Some guys don’t want to take deals where they’re outplaying their deal. At the end of the day, I know it’s a business. That wasn’t part of my decision in terms of prevention. I just wanted to get a one-year deal and see how I fit with the program and move forward after that and see if we get something done later on if everything works well.”

On if the quarterback was a priority when researching free agency destinations:

“I don’t want to say it was my first priority because at the end of the day you want to be wanted. You want to be with a team that wants you to be on the team. In Washington, they were very aggressive in terms of wanting me to be on the team. I played with six quarterbacks last year. I don’t think it could get that bad. Obviously, I would like to play with Kirk; I would be an idiot if I didn’t believe that. I think he’s a great quarterback and hopefully that’s what happens.”

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