Talking New Media at the Washington Redskins Training Camp

Eye on Sports MediaCorrespondent IAugust 5, 2009

ASHBURN, VA - AUGUST 03:  Defensive tackle Lorenzo Alexander #79 of the Washington Redskins hits a blocking sled while practicing during training camp August 3, 2009 in Ashburn, Virginia.  (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Ashburn, VA (Aug 5, 2009)—I had not been to the Washington Redskins training facility (Redskins Park) in over 15 years.  In fact I have never had the time to visit any team's training camp.  But know that ever since I moved to Washington, D.C., in 1987, I have been a huge Redskins fan.  Even moving south to Athens, Georgia in 1994 could not change that.

Being back in the D.C. area this week for a wedding opened up the chance to visit Redskins Park this morning.  During my four-hour visit, I got to talk to a number of people, both inside and outside of the Redskins organization.  The subject?  Reaching out to the fans with both traditional and new media.

Over the next four to seven days, I will be posting articles based on interviews with seven people with differing perspectives on how they work with and use various forms of new and traditional media to reach fans.

Special thanks to Mike Pehanich, Assistant Director of Communications for the Washington Redskins for all he did to make this happen, and to make it a success.

Here is the story lineup, in no particular order.


The Tweeter

Washington Redskins Wide Receiver Trent Shelton uses Twitter.  He does not tweet his every move.  Instead he trys to tweet inspirational messages.  Trent talked to us about finding the right balance for using Twitter and other social networking, too.


The Dream Job

This last spring, there was a contest run by Bleacher Report and  The prize for 32 lucky people?  The chance to work as embedded reporters for a specific team, going as far as the team does in the playoffs.  Ed Sheahin, a photographer by day, talks to us about how this "opportunity of a lifetime" came his way via Facebook.

From City Parks to Redskins Park

Working as a journalist covering city hall and police blotters, Gary Fitzgerald took a job with Snyder Communications as a writer/editor.  In 2003, he made the jump to managing for Dan Snyder.  Gary talks to us about this and the "wow" moment when he really felt like a member of the Redskins team.


The Professional Blogger

Who says that bloggers cannot get along with mainstream media?  In fact, Matt Terl was able to jump on a blog post written by a mainstream media blogger and get the job as blogger for  He tells us how this all happened.



The Blogging Tight End

Not every athlete has a blog.  But Washington Redskins Tight End Chris Cooley does.  We talk with his brother about how it came to be, and how they once got in trouble with the Redskins over a video they posted.


"Extreme" vs. Mainstream

In his day job, Brian Murphy is a photographer for the United States Army, working out of Fort Belvoir, Virginia.  But he is also a passionate Redskins fan that writes for He talks with us about how doing a story on one player's National Guard service opened up his opportunity to cover the Redskins.

There Is Crying in Football
There is only one time in his career that Washington Redskins Senior Vice-President/Executive Producer—Media Larry Michael cried on the air.  For someone who spent 20 years with Westwood One Radio as a producer and on-air talent, this was a rare admission.