They wanted him to build off a good finish. Instead, he reverted to past habits and lost a whole season. Josh LeRibeus spent last offseason out of shape, injured and ultimately in the doghouse. It took him a whole season to repair the damage.
The Redskins hope he's back on the right path.
"This is what we wanted," Redskins offensive line coach Chris Foerster said.
Foerster always references the Seattle playoff game after the 2012 season for LeRibeus because he replaced an injured Kory Lichtensteiger and played well. But then LeRibeus reported out of shape last offseason, by perhaps as much as 30 pounds, and injured his hamstring.
"He lost a year," Foerster said. "At the end of last year he was better, but he's come back in great shape with a great attitude."
The Redskins will have some tough decisions along the offensive line, though it will depend on how many linemen decide to keep. There have been years they kept only eight, but it would be hard to see them keeping fewer than nine and perhaps even 10.
They not only added two players in free agency (Shawn Lauvao and Mike McGlynn), they also drafted two players (Spencer Long and Morgan Moses). And they have the young backups in LeRibeus, Tom Compton and Adam Gettis.
"Compton, LeRibeus and Gettis all have worked their tails off," Foerster said. "They have to step up this year because there will be a lot of competition .... Now you add Spender and Morgan to the mix and it's a group of guys that all have a chance to play in this league."
How well they play is always another matter. But the Redskins hope their depth is stronger in part because of a much better offseason by LeRibeus, who is working at both guard spots. Several months ago there was concern about him and if he'd have the proper motivation to succeed. Or if he was someone they'd need to constantly prod.
This is a big season for the former third-round pick. He's playing for a new head coach and must prove he deserves a spot. But he'll report to training camp in much better standing than a year ago.
"Right now his physical abilities are very good," Foerster said. "You don't see glaring weaknesses in his game. Every now and then he misses something, little things. But that comes from playing and getting more reps. I'm real happy with his game."