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Jordan Reed's improved footwork results in big day at Redskins minicamp

ASHBURN, Va. -- The move was like many Jordan Reed had made in the past: A linebacker goes lunging one way and the Washington Redskins tight end darts another. This time, the culprit was linebacker Zach Brown.

Reed then caught the pass from quarterback Kirk Cousins, who let Brown know he shouldn't feel bad.

"Happens to anybody Zach! Happens to anybody," the quarterback shouted.

Yes, it does. Later, it happened to corner Josh Norman when Reed got behind the linebackers versus a cover three look in a two-minute drill, catching the ball for a touchdown.

It certainly proved to be a reminder of Reed's role in the offense. Even with Pierre Garcon and DeSean Jackson around the past three years, the passing game still went through Reed. Nothing will change in 2017.

Reed rehabbed his shoulder this offseason, then spent the last month working out in Florida (as he has done in the past). His main focus: footwork. The early return: He looked sharp.

"I feel great, I feel explosive," Reed said.

There's a strong connection between he and Cousins and that was evident all day, once again. It'll remain that way during the season.

Here are other observations from the practice:

1. Second-year corner Kendall Fuller looks better than he did a year ago -- as he should. Fuller was recovering from knee surgery at this time a year ago and, though he played, the coaches always felt he might have done so too soon. He didn't have much ability to recover after being beaten on a route; he seems to have more of that now.

Fuller spent time working as the No. 1 slot corner and has covered receiver Jamison Crowder. He doesn't always win -- Crowder got him leaning outside on one route to create lots of separation inside. But there were several times Fuller prevented him from getting open. Fuller broke up a pass on a slant route.

"He feels a lot better with where he is physically and that's important obviously for a DB," Redskins coach Jay Gruden said. "We probably pushed him a little bit too hard. He felt good, but I don't think he was really quite his 100 percent self. He was good enough to play, he's a tough guy, he'll fight through anything, but I think this year he feels like the strength is back. He's got a little bit more speed and quickness and I think you'll see a better player."

2. Redskins linebacker Junior Galette said his Achilles has fully healed, but that he's only about 80 percent of where he needs to be as a player. Galette got his first work against left tackle Trent Williams Tuesday and didn't generate the sort of pressure he eventually says he will (he said the coaches asked him to tone it down this week and show more of what he can do in training camp). Galette also said he lost about 15 pounds and will play in the upper 240s this season, hoping it provides him the ability to stay explosive. It's too early to gauge what sort of impact he can make.

3. One of the things the players like about new secondary coach Torrian Gray: He'll make instant corrections on the field during practice. That was one thing they wanted more from Perry Fewell. Tuesday, after one play, Gray yelled across the field to Norman, "What does stay square mean J-No?" The defensive backs actually had a strong day, especially stripping the ball after apparent catches. It happened several times.

4. Gruden was most animated during the two-minute drill near the end of practice, shouting out the time and situation. He liked that they faced a number of situations: a fourth-and-10; third down in the red zone with no time outs. "You have to make those plays, both sides of the ball," Gruden said. "So, it was great to challenge them and push them, get the clock working, use the timeouts, which is good for me. It's just something that we try to do almost every day."