On when he realized coming back here was a possibility:
"When I first got released, it was a possibility. I guess Vinny [Cerrato] found out I was available, Coach [Joe] Bugel called me about 50 times, you know, 'Stud, come back, we want you here,' and just to know that you're wanted to know that people still care about you. You know, being released was I guess you could say a humbling experience. That was my first time not being wanted as a player, growing up from high school to college and even in the National Football League. But you live and you learn. You learn from the mistakes that you've made, and hopefully you can grow from your experiences. So I'm just glad to be back, man. And I believe that the sky's the limit for myself and for this team. Coach Bugel knows me as a player, the person that I am, he knows that I'm going to put forth my best effort, and that's what I'm ready to do."
On not chasing the money:
"We had an excellent visit in Detroit. I think the organization is one of the top organizations. Even Buffalo is a good organization. But my wife and I, we talked about it--this is our home. When football's over, this is where we want to live. Her family lives up in Urbana, Maryland, and this is where I wanted to play. My heart is here, and I was excited to come back. And I know that Chris Samuels is still here. Randy Thomas, Casey Rabach, Jon Jansen--the gang was still here, and I remember the good times. I remember the games that we played, the fun that we had as a group. So that was the major factor in me coming back."
On how his game has changed since he's been gone:
"I would say this: I've been very fortunate to play under Coach Bugel, and even going to Buffalo [under] Coach Dave McNally, and you learn a lot of things from two probably Hall of Fame offensive line coaches who have coached 30 years in the National Football League. Just nothing has really changed, because you could say technique, but coaches teach it different. The main thing I think that has remained the same is my work ethic. Just me knowing that I'm not going to be the player I want to be if I don't work. I wasn't blessed with the best athletic ability, but one thing I do know, I know how to work. I've had great coaches to help me to bring the best out of me, so I'm looking forward to the opportunity."
On if he regrets leaving:
"You know, I really don't try to dwell too much on the past. When I left, there was still a piece of me still here. So therefore I'm just glad to be back. I'm excited about getting the work, I'm excited about having one of the best offensive lines in the National Football League, and I know we can accomplish that here."
On the timeline of being contacted and signed by the Redskins:
"Well, I was in Arizona training at the time that I received the call from Vinny and the guys. We kept open communications through the whole process. Like Coach [Jim Zorn] said, they did a great job of making it happen, not giving up on me, and that's what I appreciate. Some people who want you, people who care about you, and they know you. So that was just one of the key factors in me coming back. They made it happen, they got it done."
On if he felt increased pressure in Buffalo with the large contract:
"I don't think so. I think in this league--it's performance-based anyway. It doesn't matter if you're making the most or if you're not, because you can be here today, gone tomorrow. I understand that, especially this past week experiencing what I did experience. I know you have to perform. And as a person, I'm my biggest critic. Coach Bugel will tell you that. I'm here to watch film myself, we come in early, we stay late, we do what we have to do to get better. So if there was anything, I would put pressure on myself to be the player I know I can be."
On if he kept in touch with Coach Bugel while he was away:
"Yes. Periodically I would come back to the facility. I've established some great relationships here, with Chris Samuels, Randy Thomas and the guys--Demetric Evans. So I would always come back to see the guys, and I would come back to see Coach Bugel. Because Coach Bugel is a great, inspiring piece in helping me become the player I had become."