Swearinger: Gruden decided to 'not name me captain'

Ben Krimmel
December 24, 2018 - 2:52 pm

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Former Redskins safety D.J. Swearing said on 106.7 The Fan Monday head coach Jay Gruden's decision made sure Swearinger wasn't a team captain this season.

"You can read between those lines, man. It's not rocket science on why I wasn't the captain," Swearinger said.

Swearinger said in his appearance on Grant & Danny, "it was the coach's decision to not name me captain."

106.7 Exclusive: Swearinger breaks the news of his release

After being named a captain last season, the Redskins named Alex Smith, Mason Foster, and Deshazor Everett captains for the 2018 season.

Swearinger said this is the first team he's been a member of in which there are only three captains instead of four or five. 

"You mentioned you were a captain last year," Grant Paulsen said. "Why weren't you voted a captain again this year? That was weird to me."

"Man, you know, I guess those questions that you'd have to ask Jay Gruden," Swearinger said with a laugh. 

"But the players vote on that, right? The coach doesn't name it, right?" Paulsen said. "So if your teammates say, 'Hey D.J.'s our leader, he's our captain.' Jay's not gonna say, 'No, I'm gonna give it to Mason Foster.' Right? I mean, that's not how it works?"

"Nah, nah, nah, that is exactly how it works," Swearinger said.

"Really?" Paulsen said. 

"That's exactly how it works," Swearinger answered. 

Paulsen asked if Swearinger thinks he was voted a captain by his teammates and Gruden vetoed their decision. 

"Yeah, yeah, yeah, I was voted the captain from the players," Swearinger said. "And I have proof and evidence of that from some of my teammates."

Swearinger said unlike last year, the offense and defense voted together for captains, rather than as separate units. 

"It was something of a three-way tie, they said it was a three-way tie, on the defense," Swearinger said.

"But I do know for a fact that I was named one of the captains and one of my teammate's votes did put me ahead of the three-way tie," Swearinger said. "Like I said, it was the coach's decision to not name me captain."

Swearinger acknowledges his outspokenness may have contributed to him not being named captain and his release.

"I'm a vocal guy, a passionate guy that wants to win and, you know, if the coaches feel like I'm too smart or I'm a weapon as far as my smarts are concerned, and to ingore what things are going wrong or not going well then they gotta release the guy that, you know, has knowledge or has, you know, respect in the locker room."

Gruden: Swearinger's release was 'best for both parties'

"Everything happens for a reason. I wasn't a captain for a reason. I was the captain last year for a reason," Swearinger said. "Everything happens for a good reason or a bad reason and you just gotta learn from it and find your peace."


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