DJ Swearinger is all over the place, or at least his name seems to be. In no small part due to the lick he put on Marshawn Lynch in the Redskins dismantling of the Raiders. Thearen’t going to change just because everyone of Swearinger’s hit, but maybe they should, given what Washington’s defense did to Oakland on Sunday night.
Just a year ago, the Redskins were ranked 28th in terms of defense. Washington Senior Vice President of player personnel Doug Williams, believes that the rest of the NFL has a good reason to now fear the Redskins’ defense. And after three games, the Redskins have climbed to an impressive 5th in net yards allowed, 4th in rushing yards, and 9th in points per game.
New additions have made an impact, but none more than Swearinger – literally and figuratively.
The new Redskins safety grew up idolizing Sean Taylor. He promised to bring Sean Taylor’s magic to the field, and Sunday’s whipeout of Lynch, certainly was reminiscent of the days when Taylor was smacking the lights out of opponents.
Swearinger has been wearing his idol’s rookie number 36 since high school. Following the signing of his deal with the Redskins in March, DJ used Instagram to tell his fans the good news, while wearing an actual Sean Taylor jersey.
“I had to represent Sean Taylor on prime-time night. I wanted to rock the Sean Taylor jersey and represent him. You look good, you play good, y’all know the rest.”
It’s safe to say that Swearinger has injected some swag into the defense. The safety brought plenty of attitude to Washington’s 27-10 victory over the Raiders.
That part, is definitely reminiscent of the late, great Taylor.
Swearinger spent the days leading up to the game boasting about how great his performance would be against the Raiders. It takes a skilled and confident athlete to hype his own abilities up, and to then deliver when the time comes.
He was obviously offended by Amari Cooper saying he and Michael Crabtree were going to hang 200 yards on the Redskins, in the process of demolishing Washington. Swearinger and the Redskins defense felt disrespected. They had a meeting at Josh Norman’s house last week, and talked about having to earn that respect.
Come Sunday, Swearinger seemed to make it his mission to force every drop of that disrespect out of the Raiders. Cooper finished with 6 yards; Crabtree with 7 yards. The corners obviously get the lion’s share of the credit for shutting those two down, but the entire secondary was in shut down mode. And when Swearinger Beast Moded Beast Mode, it just seemed to take the entire defense a notch higher.
“We wanted to send a message to the world, we’re not pushovers, we’re not going to lay down for nobody, we’re going to compete every time we’re on the field, this defense is definitely going to be stingy every time we’re on the field, and we’re going to keep it rolling.”
He dogged Lynch about the trucking on Instagram after the game with a funny Skittles reference. He had a go at Cooper on Instagram too.
He wore a zany Redskins straw hat sombrero after the game.
There’s no denying Swearinger has swag. There’s no denying that he’s made an impact.
And the Redskins just posted their best defensive performance in more than two decades.