ASHBURN - John Beck spoke to reporters Wednesday for the first time since being named the starting quarterback of the Washington Redskins. Beck replaced incumbent quarterback in Rex Grossman Sunday against the Philadelphia Eagles after Grossman threw four interception in three quarters.
Though Washington Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan informed his entire team Wednesday morning of his decision to go with Beck at quarterback over Grossman, he informed each quarterback on Tuesday of their fate.
"[Shanahan] just brought me in [his office] and said 'We're going to give you an opportunity to play this week,' " Beck said. "[He said] just go out there and play your game."
Beck's start Sunday against the Carolina Panthers will be just the fifth of his career and his first since his rookie season of 2007 while with the Miami Dolphins.
"I'm definitely excited," he said of his opportunity. "There's been a lot of hard work that's gone into this and you never know when your opportunity is going to come so you always have to stay ready."
Beck was in the running to earn the starting job out of training camp, but was beaten by Grossman in a close competition. The Redskins new starter believes that the last six weeks of practice have prepared him for the opportunity to perform well moving forward.
"It's been good to be able to be in the [backup quarterback] position this year," he said. "Last year I was only in that position for a couple games at the very end of the season [while] still learning the offense."
Beck was no doubt brought in to provide a spark to the offense and be able to show the ability to protect the football, something Grossman struggled with.
"Ball security is a point every single week," Beck said. "It's very hard to win in the NFL if you turn the all over. Now it's on my shoulders to take care of the football and put our team in the est position to win."
Now that the decision has been made to switch starters, it's unclear as to how long Beck will have to establish himself. Most have speculated that should Beck struggle, Shanahan could choose to go back to Grossman.
"I don't know because [me and Shanahan] haven't had that conversation," he said of his status as the starter. "I can't really think about that because if I try to think of it as 'Oh, I have to do everything right now,' that can be putting too much pressure on yourself."
Shanahan will address the media after Wednesday's practice to discuss the reasons behind Grossman's benching and what Beck will bring to the offense, and for how long this change could last.
But as far as Beck goes, the fifth year man our of BYU realizes that his opportunity is right here, right now.
"You just have to play," he said. "Just play football."