Fresh off signing a new contract with the Redskins, linebacker Junior Galette says he has all the motivation he needs to come back healthy and productive in 2016.
During his years in the NFL, Junior Galette has had no problem getting charged and re-charged for the week-to-week tasks at hand.
In 2013 and 2014, his last two seasons with the New Orleans Saints, Galette's primary duty was to lead New Orleans' pass rush, and he did so to the tune of a combined 22 sacks.
Before the 2015 season, though, Galette was released. Just day later, he was signed by the Washington Redskins.
He never got the opportunity to help Ryan Kerrigan and others get to the quarterback, as he was lost for the season to an Achilles tear just days before the regular season opener against the Miami Dolphins.
So just imagine the intensity he is feeling about getting back on the field.
On Wednesday, the Redskins formally announced the re-signing of Galette to a reported one-year deal, giving the pass rush specialist the exact opportunity he was hoping for heading into the offseason.
"It ain't week to week, so imagine all those weeks piled up on top of each other, watching your teammates win the division title without you," Galette told Redskins.com Wednesday, shortly after signing his new deal. "There's a lot of motivation built in, but I was motivated regardless. It's just this extra juice I've got that I think I've found all over again. Not that I lost it, but I've caught onto it this time and I'm never letting go. It's the same feeling I had coming out of Stillman College undrafted to a World Champion team at the time, New Orleans Saints. It was like, 'Who is this guy?' I'm ready to go all out."
Despite Galette's release from the Saints for a reported off-field issue, Redskins general manager Scot McCloughan didn't have any reservations about bringing in the linebacker, especially after having an extensive meeting with him.
The Washington Redskins today announced the signing of linebacker Junior Galette. Take a look back at the pass rusher's five-year NFL career.
"We did thorough, thorough research," McCloughan said last year. "We brought him in, met with him for hours interview-wise, and you know, I've been lucky enough to be in this league a long time and to be able to talk to the right people on other teams, our own players and other players and coaches. And the decision was made because we really believe he's a Redskin, and that's why we signed him."
That mutual trust is one of the reasons Galette shunned other potential offers in favor of the Redskins.
"Scot really wanted me here I feel like more than the other teams," Galette said. "That's more important than a few hundred dollars, honestly."
With the first phase of offseason workouts still a month out, Galette said his health right now is about "80 to 85 percent."
He's sure he'll be 100 percent by training camp. That's when he'll finally get to settle into Joe Barry's defense, working opposite Kerrigan and helping younger pass rushers like Preston Smith, who led all NFL rookies with eight sacks last season, and third-year linebacker Trent Murphy.
"I just want to be out there with the guys in OTAs on defense and continue building on the defense that Joe Barry is doing a fantastic job with the guys that he has," Galette said. "He just keeps adding to the defense, and when you have a consistent defensive coordinator they really just keep adding on. But I'll get the chance to really get the grasp of it in OTAs, because they literally start from scratch like the first day of school."