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Former Ram Carriker Re-energized With Redskins


Adam Carriker is feeling rejuvenated in Washington.

A first-round pick by the St. Louis Rams in 2007, the 6-6, 315-pound defensive lineman started all 16 games as a rookie and 9-of-15 games in 2008.

However, Carriker missed all of 2009 because of an injury to his right shoulder.

The Rams traded him to the Redskins as part of a swap of fifth-round draft picks in 2010.

Now Carriker is feeling healthy again and eager to become an integral part of the Redskins defense.

"Sitting at home, watching the game, it's not what I'm built for," he said. "So to be out there playing and competing again – it's what I like to do," Carriker said.

Fortunately for Carriker, he wasn't the only Rams transplant in Washington this year. Defensive coordinator Jim Haslett, who held the same post in St. Louis, has joined him.

"It definitely helps to have a familiar face, to know somebody when you get here," Carriker said. "I would say it eased the transition."

The scenery is just one of the new things Carriker is getting used to this season. He continues to adapt to the 3-4 defense the Redskins implemented under the direction of Haslett and head coach Mike Shanahan.

Carriker, who played defensive end at Nebraska before becoming the Rams' starting nose tackle, is up to the challenge.

His stats can be misleading, though. In the Redskins' first two games this season, he has two tackles and a half-sack, but his primary job is to clog the line and help open space for linebackers to make plays.

"This defense suits me well," he said. "I'm a physical guy. I can take on double-teams well, which is a lot of what I do, so it's right up my alley. I went from end to nose guard my first year in the NFL. So that's very different from end, and this is obviously different from nose guard."

Said Haslett: "He's perfect for what he does here in this defense...He's probably the strongest guy on our team. He's a powerful guy and he has done a good job for us."

In preparation for the change to left end, Carriker spent a lot of time in the Redskins' weight room.

Right alongside him was fellow defensive lineman Phillip Daniels, who has made a name for himself as a competitive weightlifter.

Said Daniels: "Adam and I are both the same on the field, really. We play the same. But in the weight room? I'm the man. Don't let him fool you. He's not the man, I'm the man around here."

"I got the upper hand!" Carriker retorted.

In and out of the locker room, Carriker has quickly embraced his new surroundings and the Redskins jersey that goes with it.

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