For Orchard, though, it has to feel at least a little like a miracle.
The 27-year-old joined Washington late last season to help make up for the loss of Ryan Kerrigan, who wasn't healthy enough to go in the team's Week 13 matchup with the Panthers. But Orchard didn't just fill in that weekend; he starred.
The pass rusher posted two tackles for loss, one sack and the game-sealing fumble recovery. He didn't know the system and didn't even know some of his fellow defender's names, yet he was still able to terrorize Carolina in the second half and was a huge reason why Washington escaped with the road victory.
After the win, Orchard joined NBC Sports Washington's JP Finlay on Redskins Postgame Live for a memorable interview (watch the full video above).
"I might get a little emotional," he told Finlay, wiping away tears. "My family, we've been through a lot. So, to come out and represent myself and my family, it means everything. Just grateful for the organization to give me an opportunity to play the game that I love."
The opposing coach that day? Ron Rivera. Orchard no doubt made an impression on the guy who had a huge say in bringing him back for 2020. It's likely not a stretch to say that afternoon revived his career, and you can tell he felt that way in that interview.
Now, Orchard is by no means a roster lock. The Redskins have been active when it comes to signing other linebackers so far and already have edge rushers like Ryan Kerrigan, Ryan Anderson and Montez Sweat in house. He'll have to earn his spot this summer.
For a guy who was installing windows before the Burgundy and Gold originally acquired him last season, however, the new contract was an important and exciting step. It's safe to assume he's cool putting that window gig on hold for a while.
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