1. Mike Shanahan made it clear what he thought Graham Gano’s 11 misses stemmed from: his head.
“It has got to be mental and not physical,” he said. “It’s the same thing I shared with him after the Tampa Bay game. That mindset has to be very, very strong if you are going to be a kicker in this league.”

But Gano disagreed. Instead, he said his focus this offseason is working on kicking off a two-step approach rather than his current three steps. He used the latter, he said, to get more distance. He said the two-step approach leads to more consistency.

And he’s not worried about the mental aspect.

“I’ve never had a problem mentally,” he said. “I’m very mentally strong. It’s more technique. I can put the ball through from 60 yards, but it’s accuracy. I have to work on my mechanics. It’s fired me up having the season I’ve had. I’m looking forward to getting better.”

Well, if he doesn’t then he’ll be out of a job. Pretty simple.

2.    Defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth showed up to get his physical and clean out his locker Monday. But he refused to speak with the media. End of story. End of Redskins career. Will he be traded or released? My hunch, for now, says traded. Talked to one NFL source who thought two or three teams would be interested, including wherever Jeff Fisher coaches. Haynesworth won’t yield much more than a fifth-rounder, but it beats nothing.

3.    C Casey Rabach will undergo surgery on his right shoulder, something he said was already scheduled before he hurt it Sunday vs. the Giants.

4.    LB Andre Carter understands his tenure here could be over. If the Redskins don’t pick up an option on his contract, he’ll be a free agent. There’s no doubt he’d rather be back in a 4-3 system. This season reaffirms what he always believed: he’s a defensive end.

“I told my position coach if he got me as a rookie, I definitely would shine,” Carter said. “But … I’m always going to be a defensive end.”

This was a tough season for Carter, who was coming off his best season in Washington. He could have complained and never did. Sort of the opposite of some players.
But he knows Monday might have been his last time in this locker room.

“It’s tough,” he said. “There’s so much history here. I’m appreciative of the guys I played with… It’s a lot of memories.”

6. Corner Carlos Rogers reiterated that he would like to stick around in Washington, but that this is his chance to cash in after missing out last offseason. He’s not concerned with the potential glut of free agents, saying he’ll be one of the top corners available. Could be that a difference of opinion in terms of his worth prompts him to sign elsewhere.

But he enters free agency having shown that he can cover in the slot as well as drop to safety on occasion.

“I’m familiar with here, I like the players here,” Rogers said. “I don’t want to move. But money always plays a part in it.”

7. Malcolm Kelly – remember him? – did what Shanahan wanted by staying in town while he was on injured reserve. In most cases, players leave town and they aren’t sticking around for Saturday walk-throughs. Kelly did that.

“That’s hard, man, coming in for meetings every day when you know you won’t be able to play,” he said, “especially when you have the option to be back home hanging out. Once I got fully healthy that was the most frustrating part, going through all the meetings and coming up here Saturday mornings for the walk-through. It was showing him that I want to be here.”

Now he needs to show it on the field.

8. Redskins union rep Vonnie Holliday doesn’t share commissioner Roger Goodell’s optimism regarding a CBA settlement before March.

“It’s highly unlikely at this time,” Holliday said.

What he doesn’t like is that, in his mind, the owners are winning the public relations battle with the players.

“We need to do a better job of getting our message out where we stand on things and that’s something where there’s going to be a big push in the next month,” he said. “We should be saying we’re not a bunch of greedy guys. We have a formula that works. We’re just asking the owners why are we going through labor issues right now when this equation is working. Everyone’s winning.

“It’s amazing how the talk evolved from negotiating a collective bargaining agreement to negotiating an 18-game season. That was a strategic move by ownership and the NFL. That’s disappointing. As players you see the increase of head injuries and the fine system and you talk about player safety and then you want to go to an 18-game season? How can you talk about players’ safety when you want to put players at risk?”

Incidentally, Holliday has one year left on his deal with Washington. He hasn’t made up his mind if he wants to return just yet. I will say, whenever he retires he should be placed immediately in front of a camera. The guy is good.

9. Adam Carriker said his recent improved play resulted from an altered mindset. Though everyone called him a good fit for a 3-4, he still suffered growing pains.

“Once the season got going I got real gap conscious,” he said. “We played some real physical teams and no one was able to move me off the ball. But I needed to make more plays. In my mind it was like I make the play even though I don’t make the tackle. But at the end of the year I was like, forget that I can make the play and make the tackle.”

In other words, instead of just setting up his teammates he wanted some tackles for himself.

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