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Rashad Jennings has a message for Sunday’s special-teamers

Jennings Getty Images

After wrapping Friday’s PFT Live, which included a show-record five guests (Reggie Bush, Emmitt Smith, DeAngelo Williams, Brandon Boykin, Marvin Jones), guys kept showing up to be interviewed.  So we kept interviewing them.

One of the most pleasant surprises came from Raiders running back Rashad Jennings.  The former Jaguar spent 2013 on a one-year deal in Oakland, and he’ll be hitting the open market again soon.

Jennings said he wants to stay in Oakland.  Most definitely, Oakland should want to keep him.  In 15 games (eight starts) last season, Jennings rushed for 733 yards — including a career-long 80-yard touchdown.  He added 292 yards receiving, putting Jennings over 1,000 yards from scrimmage for a team that had neither a great offensive line nor a great passing game.

But Jennings made other key contributions.  Specifically, he blocked two punts on special teams.

So how did he do it?  Jennings shared his secret — preparation and study.

He said that he learned from watching film of the long snappers he faced the specific tendencies that they had before actually snapping the ball.

Given the NFL’s one-game-winner-take-all postseason format, special teams often makes a difference in the postseason.  For players dealing with the final idle hours before Super Bowl XLVIII begins, it makes sense to study carefully the opposing long snapper.

For the long snappers, it also makes sense to study themselves to ensure that there’s no specific tendency that could spell disaster.

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6 Responses to “Rashad Jennings has a message for Sunday’s special-teamers”
  1. mataug says: Feb 1, 2014 5:04 PM

    Peyton Manning definitely knows the importance of special teams. I mean how many guys get to see a successful kick return and onside kick from the sidelines across multiple Super Bowls :)

  2. blackbeard43 says: Feb 1, 2014 5:39 PM

    Ha, I like the cut of his gip

  3. wayneflores says: Feb 1, 2014 8:07 PM

    Raiders need to resign Jennings. Mcfragile is history.

  4. joewilliesshnoz says: Feb 1, 2014 8:24 PM

    Go Pitt !

  5. joenash72 says: Feb 1, 2014 10:13 PM

    If I ever spend long hours studying film of a long snapper, my family has been instructed to shoot me.

  6. joetoronto says: Feb 2, 2014 4:31 AM

    Jennings was a great find, he’s going nowhere.

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