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Collected Wisdom: Washington Redskins offensive lineman and former Sooner Chris Chester

Chris Chester came to OU as a tight end out of Tustin, Calif. He eventually was moved to offensive line, where he's now played eight years in the NFL with Ravens and Redskins.
by Berry Tramel Published: February 15, 2014

photo - Chris Chester says the Redskins’ offensive line is maturing as a group. AP photo
Chris Chester says the Redskins’ offensive line is maturing as a group. AP photo

The best aspect of coming up in Tustin, I just saw a lot of good athletes from basketball, from football. I was able to be around a lot of really good athletes. Some guys playing in the NFL now, seeing (former OSU basketball player) Doug Gottlieb come up. We have two or three other guys right now in the NFL. I'm grateful I was able to be around all these great athletes and see what it was like to be able to compete athletically at a high level.

I lost my mother. Going into my redshirt senior year, my mother passed away of a heart attack. Came out of nowhere. Coach Stoops, the whole staff was great. They were really good about letting me go back, make things right at home, being there for my dad. My dad at the time was kind of by himself and it was tough on him. I'm thankful they helped support me in that moment where I could go back and take care of my family.

My brother, he's in jail. We're still in contact. He's working hard to get every thing in line, get his life together.

It's tough. But I know my brother, too, and the way our parents raised us. And that's that you get knocked down, you get back. My brother's a good man. Made some poor decisions at a young age. He has to deal with it. But at the same time, I know the kind of man and the kind of character he has. I'm going to play whatever role I can to help him back on his feet and get his life back in order.

It's been tough at Washington. In general, I really haven't had a lot of bad seasons, besides last year and maybe my second year with the Ravens. I've been fortunate to be pretty successful in most of my football career. It is tough, when things don't quite go the way you want them to go. I think for us, the Redskins, it's good for us to have to deal with the adversity. I think it'll make us a better team in the long run.

I've been around for awhile now. So I know coaching change is just part of the business. You deal with it. At the end of the day, I've got to go out there and block and play football. It's just somebody else telling me how and when to do it.

Both Baltimore and Washington are great, and both cities absolutely love football. It is great to be a part of the history of the Redskins, just because Baltimore's kind of a younger team, as far as franchises. Obviously, they've been very successful and I was glad I was able to be a part of some of that success as well. But I think all the history and all the great players that come through with the history of football, with the Redskins, I'm grateful I get to be a part of it.

by Berry Tramel
Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,...
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