Head coach Jay Gruden announced Trent Williams, Dashon Goldson and Tress Way as the Redskins' three captains for the upcoming 2015 season on Wednesday.
In anticipation of the Redskins' first regular season game, head coach Jay Gruden announced Wednesday that left tackle Trent Williams, safety Dashon Goldson and punter Tress Way would be the team's captains for 2015.
The three will represent the offense, defense and special teams, respectively, as voted by their teammates.
Williams, who is one of the elite offensive linemen in the game, recently signed a reported five-year extension with the team that made him the highest paid left tackle in the NFL.
Since his rapid ascension to being one of the best at his position, he's gotten used to being a leader and being labeled one of the older guys in the locker room, even though he is still relatively young.
"I take extreme pride in that honor, to know that the guys voted me to basically be the front line, to represent this team, to represent this offensive unit," said Williams, entering his sixth season. "It's a huge privilege for me. I enjoy every second of it. It's a blessing and I look to continue to relish in that role and be a better leader than I was last year."
Since being traded to the Redskins from the Buccaneers in April, Goldson has become a unifying presence in the secondary. Head coach Jay Gruden has praised him effusively for his ability to teach young players without patronizing them and appreciates his ability to take command of the defense.
"He's accountable for what he does, obviously, but he also takes players underneath his wing and he helps them out and talks them through some situations," Gruden said a few weeks ago. "Out here at practice, you see him taking control of the secondary, talking, communicating, and it's not so much yelling at a guy or any of that stuff, but it's a matter of coaching them up and telling them how to work and showing them how to work based on what he does. As far as being attentive in the meetings and then transferring what he knows out here to not only to himself, doing it out here himself, but also helping the other kids, the young guys, you can just see he's a natural born leader, and we're lucky to get him."
Trenton Robinson, still learning the rigors of being an NFL safety, believes Goldson exemplifies all the right qualities to represent a different brand of defense this year.
"Smart guy, good player. Knows what he's doing. Not scared to say what's on his mind," Robinson said. "Being able to speak for the guys in your room, being able to speak for the guys on your team… he's living right, doing the right things on and off the field, those are the qualities you got to have."
Goldson is used to being leaned on and some of his confidence in organizing the defense comes through experience and expecting a lot in the upcoming season.
"I don't think it's hard," Goldson said of being a leader. "It's all about your mindset and what you want to be. We have a lot of potential to be good, so I'm just trying to bring the best out of everybody."
Way led the league in punting last season and was the team's only punter on the roster throughout the entire offseason, a signal of trust from his peers and coaches.
"Two years ago I got cut by the Chicago Bears and I thought about hanging up the cleats and thought about being done with football," Way said last week at the Redskins Welcome Home Luncheon. "But my beautiful wife and my mom and dad encouraged me to stay with it and keep going at it."