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Austin Reiter Ready To Battle For Roster Spot

Washington Redskins rookie center Austin Reiter, a seventh-round pick, is ready to challenge for a spot on the team's 53-man roster. 

Austin Reiter needed to find an outlet as he patiently waited to hear word from a team during the final day of the 2015 NFL Draft.

By halfway through the sixth round, Reiter still hadn't heard his name called.

So what did he do?

"I think that whole draft day I had to go in my room by myself," he recently told TV's Larry Michael. "You know, it was just me, my parents and my sister just hanging out at home. Just halfway through, about the sixth round, I kind of went into my room and did my own thing. I had to play my Xbox to get my mind off of it. A lot of anxiety that day, but the phone call was definitely a blessing."

That phone call, of course, came from the Redskins in the seventh round with the 222nd overall pick.

It was the third pick used by the team on an offensive lineman this year, as the organization continues to bolster that unit with young, talented players.

And, like his rookie teammates, Reiter's biggest adjustment has been learning the team's approach and its various calls.

"We had a West Coast style offense at South Florida, the same thing as here, but I think all the terminology Coach [Bill] Callahan has is a big difference for me," he said. "We have a call for just about everything, when in college you'll use a lot of the same calls for different plays and stuff. There's a lot more terminology."

On the field, though, Callahan -- who is in his first season as the Redskins' offensive line coach -- has already improved Reiter's fundamentals in just a short time.

"I think he's great. He certainly is going to get the most out of us," Reiter said. "He likes to grind on the field. Especially in the classroom itself, he stresses the mental game. I think how detailed he is, it's great for us."

Reiter – who is one of three true centers on the roster, along with veteran Kory Lichtensteiger and first-year player Tyler Larsen – actually didn't start playing the positon full-time until his college head coach recommended he get action there.

"When I went to college, when I went to South Florida, Jim Leavitt actually told me that the best position for my size and what I'm good at with my speed, he said I really think you'll be great as a center," he said. "So, when I went to South Florida, that's when I picked [it] up."

Reiter knows Lichtensteiger is locked in as the team's starting center -- a role he has played for three-plus seasons now. So as he continues his development at the position, Reiter says his goal is to, at the very least, make the final 53-man roster this season and see where that leads him in the future.

"I would love to make the 53-man roster," he said. "That's my expectations for sure. I think Kory is a great center in front of me. I would love to be his backup role right now."




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