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Former Gator QB Competes For Starting Spot In The Pros

By on August 3rd, 2011

Another former Gator standout quarterback is competing for a starting spot. All eyes have been on Tim Tebow’s future with the Denver Broncos, but for some Gator fans who remember “Sexy Rexy” know he is going to be competing for a starting role as well. Rex Grossman has re-signed with the Washington Redskins, setting the stage for his duel with John Beck for the starting quarterback job.

Grossman, 30, signed a one-year contract with the Redskins on Tuesday, offering no explanation as to why negotiations dragged on for several days, but saying he’s eager to provide an answer to the biggest question on the team’s depth chart.

“This is all I can ask for: an offense I love, a bunch of players I think are really good,” he said. “I’m excited about this team, this offense and my opportunity.”

Grossman and Kellen Clemens, a sixth-year veteran added last week, should be able to practice beginning Thursday, which gives them eight days to prepare for the first preseason game against Pittsburgh. Clemens has been observing practices and both quarterbacks were at Tuesday afternoon’s walkthrough.

Grossman has more experience in Shanahan’s offense than any other quarterback on the roster, so he should be able to step in Thursday without much problem.

“He’s been doing all the things mentally that a quarterback has to do in order to be prepared,” Shanahan said. “He knows the playbook and has a good feel for the system. Now he gets the chance to compete.”

Despite some of the attention showered on Beck during the offseason, coaches have stressed that the quarterback job is an open competition. Coaches are expected to split the reps between them, divide playing time in the four preseason games and withhold naming a starter until Week 1 nears.

“They all got a good opportunity,” said offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan. “Whenever you don’t have a designated starter, you got a lot of competition.”

Even though he wasn’t under contract, Grossman attended the team’s player-organized workouts, along with Beck. Grossman said he also took home a Redskins playbook to study and spent the offseason watching tapes of the Redskins and the Houston Texans’ offenses.

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