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Beck's Hoping For Another Chance

Posted Feb 14, 2012

John Beck believes in himself. This much we know. Do the Redskins' coaches believe in Beck? He hopes to redeem himself after his three-game stint as the Redskins' starting quarterback last season.

John Beck believes in himself.

This much we know.

Does the Redskins’ coaching staff believe in Beck?

That remains in question.

Even for Beck.

“I can’t control that,” Beck said in comments one day after the Redskins’ regular season ended. “I don’t know. I hope so.”

Beck is under contract in 2012, but with so much scrutiny on the Redskins quarterback position this offseason, there is no guarantee that Beck is back.

He is hoping to get another chance as the Redskins' starting quarterback and redeem himself after his disappointing three-game stint.

Beck replaced Rex Grossman in Week 7. He performed reasonably well in a 33-20 loss to Carolina but struggled in a 23-0 loss to Buffalo and a 19-11 loss to San Francisco the next two weeks.

Just when Beck was set to return to Miami, the franchise that drafted him in 2007, coaches opted to insert Grossman back in as the Redskins’ starter.

Beck did not receive a regular season snap the rest of the way.

Overall, Beck completed 80-of-132 passes – a 60.6 completion percentage – for 858 yards, two touchdowns and four interceptions. He was sacked 16 times, including a franchise-record 10 in the Bills game. His QB rating was 72.1.

“[The season] was disappointing, it didn’t go the way we wanted it to go,” Beck said. “I had very high expectations for myself and for the team. Just looking at myself, I had some goals and I wasn’t able to achieve those goals. I want to come back to reach those goals next year.”

Beck has an excuse, if he chooses to use it.

During his three-game stint, the offense was best with injuries, with Trent Williams, Chris Cooley and Santana Moss sidelined and Kory Lichtensteiger and Tim Hightower on injured reserve.

To his credit, Beck chooses not to use the excuse.

“This business isn’t about things always being fair, it’s about finding a way to win and finding a way to get better,” he said.

Beck’s story is well-known by now. He was a second-round draft pick by the Miami Dolphins and started five games, all losses. He was benched and never could re-establish himself as the Dolphins’ starter.

He eventually moved on to Baltimore where he backed up Joe Flacco for a season. He joined the Redskins as part of a 2010 training camp trade.

This offseason, Beck hopes to work closely with Redskins coaches in mini-camps and OTAs – something he was unable to do last year due to the lockout.

When he arrived at training camp last summer, in the mix for the Redskins’ starting job, he had “question after question” for offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan.

With a full offseason this year, Beck believes he will get a have grasp of the offense instead of learning it on the job, as he did at times last season.

“OTAs are when you can really get a feel for things, and try different things,” Beck said. “You can go over things in-depth with the coaches. I feel like I can learn a lot more in this offense, and I know that can help.

"And then I just want to get better, so that when I do get my next opportunity – I don’t know when it will come – I can play better and help the team win.”

One area Beck knows he can improve on is taking more chances downfield.

After he was sacked 10 times by the Bills, he seemed hesitant to throw intermediate and deep routes the following week vs. the 49ers. He completed 14 passes – a Redskins single-game record – to running back Roy Helu in the game, most on check-downs.

The offense was struggling with turnovers under Grossman and Beck put an emphasis on being cautious with the football.

“It’s easy to say, ‘The next time I want to be more aggressive,’ but I got to be the starting quarterback with [an approach] of ‘Let’s be smart because right now the turnovers are killing us,’” Beck said. “So how do you go into it with a ‘cut it loose’ feeling that you want to have, knowing that we’re trying to avoid [turnovers]?

“It was a tricky spot. That’s why with quarterbacking it’s so easy to second guess every single play. It happens outside the building and it happens inside the building. We do it to ourselves as quarterbacks. That’s why it’s tough to play this position – but I love it.

“I love challenges. I love waking up trying to get better. My mind is on 2012 because I can’t do a thing about 2011. What’s done is done but I believe in what I can do and I believe in this team.”

Beck knows full well things can change in an instant.

He still carries what happened in Miami – where he went from rookie starter to an afterthought in the span of a year – and knows it may happen again until he solidifies himself on a team.

“That’s the NFL,” he said. “You never know what’s around the corner. The only thing I can control is the way that I work and the way that I prepare. [Last season] didn’t shake down the way I wanted it to, but it doesn’t change my mindset one bit. It doesn’t change the way I believe that there are a lot of good things ahead for this team.”



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