In Safety Shuffle, Atogwe's Back In the Mix

Posted Dec 21, 2011

Free safety Oshiomogho Atogwe played the bulk of last Sunday's game against the Giants despite not starting. It appears coaches plan to rotate Atogwe, DeJon Gomes and Reed Doughty.

The Redskins continue to mix and match at the safety position.

Free safety Oshiomogho Atogwe played the bulk of last Sunday’s game against the New York Giants despite not starting the contest.

Atogwe recorded six tackles and a first-half interception that helped set up a Redskins touchdown in a 23-10 win at MetLife Stadium.

DeJon Gomes had started the game at free safety with Reed Doughty starting at strong safety.

It appears coaches wanted Atogwe to get some playing time so they can continue their evaluation of him heading into the offseason.

“We went into the game knowing that we were going to rotate three guys in there,” Haslett said. “We knew that DeJon would be the starter, but obviously we wanted to take a look at Oshiomogho to make sure we feel good about him and to see where he’s at.

“He had a great play on the interception. He made some good tackles. So we felt good about him and he actually felt good about how he played, which is more important.”

Atogwe saw limited action in the Redskins’ 34-27 loss to the New England Patriots in Week 14. He also did not start in Week 12 in the Redskins’ 23-17 win over the Seattle Seahawks.

Atogwe has been slowed by a myriad of injuries this season, from his hamstring to his knee to his toe. Coaches have said that he has not played at a high level as a result.

Atogwe replaced Gomes midway through the Giants game last Sunday. On his interception, he made a diving grab of a pass that had been deflected by London Fletcher downfield.

Said Atogwe: “I was excited to be back out there – it was an opportunity to play. I believe it’s my job to make the best of it. And I had fun. We were just excited to be out there to make plays.”

Atogwe, a 7-year vet in his first year in Washington, said that his various injuries felt fine during and after the game.

“I started to feel more and more like the guy I’m used to,” he said. “I felt healthy, I felt great. I was able to move around comfortably. It was a good day. I was blessed.”

Atogwe declined to concern himself with whether he’s starting or not on game days.

“Whatever reps I get, whatever the opportunities I get, I’ll make the most of it,” Atogwe said. “Whether it’s one rep or 44 reps, I’m just going to be ready.”

Gomes finished the Giants game with four tackles, while Doughty logged seven.



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