Renaldo Wynn is beginning his sixth season in Washington, making him the second longest-tenured Redskin behind Jon Jansen. Wynn spoke with Redskins.com and media after a recent training camp practice:
Q: There is some uncertainty about the Redskins this year after a 5-11 season. Where do you see this Redskins team right now?
A: "Right now, this is anybody's division. The NFC East--I'm not being biased--but I think it's one of the best divisions in football. It's very physical. You definitely can't take anyone for granted. It's any given Sunday. I know that phrase is used quite a bit, but it's definitely not overrated. You have to show up every week, week-in and week-out. We have to make sure we're running on all cylinders right now in training camp. We can't afford for anybody to miss a practice. Obviously, we have guys that are injured. We need those guys back out there as soon as possible. These preseason games are going to tell the tale of the tape. We're going to get guys out there playing."
Q: Do you think there are different expectations this year?
A: "People can say we were resting on our laurels last year in preseason, but nobody is taking anything for granted this year--I'll tell you that. You have to work hard in this league. The NFC East is going to be more powerful than ever--and that's what we're looking at this year. We want to come out of the NFC as champs. It starts right now and you have to have tunnel vision, one day at a time."
Q: The defensive line drew a lot of criticism last year, and yet the team decided to not sign or draft a lineman last offseason. How do you respond to the criticism?
A: "We use it as an opportunity. Our coaches believe in us, they trust in us and that says a lot right there. Guys worked hard this whole offseason and we're looking forward to showing everybody why they didn't draft another defensive lineman. It motivates us even more to come out and show everyone, 'Hey, we can get it done.'"
Q: The team did upgrade the secondary with several free agent signings and the drafting of LaRon Landry. How much does having a really strong secondary help the defensive line?
A: "It works hand in hand. The rush helps out in the pass coverage, and the pass coverage helps out on the rush. We definitely have to make sure the quarterback isn't patting the ball two or three times. If he's patting the ball two or three times, somebody better be back there helping [the secondary] out. If he gets rid of the ball faster than that, then hopefully those guys will get some deflections and some interceptions. We're all setting our goals real high this year and it starts right out here in camp with the hard work."
Q: Speaking of the secondary, how does it feel to have the always-talkative Fred Smoot back as a Redskin?
A: "Yeah, he's back and he's letting everybody know it, too. He's bringing back all the little awards that he makes up during training camp that kind of gets you through it. Whenever he's around, you can't stop laughing."
Q: What's your least favorite training camp drill?
A: "For us, it's the up-downs. That's old school. I hadn't done those since high school until Gregg Williams came here. You have to get everything in you just to do those. To do up-downs, and we did 40 of them when we started camp, it makes a man out of everybody."