Washington Redskins, Def, Redskins
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2016 Outlook: Quality BackupLast updated on Jul-27-2016 by Shawn Childs
The Redskins finished 26th in the NFL in rushing yards allowed (1962) with runners gaining 4.8 yards per carry. Their run defense did tighten up in the red zone leading to 10 rushing TDs. Teams attempted 25.4 runs per game, which was slight below the league average (26.3).
They ranked poorly as well in passing yards allowed (4128 - 25th) with 30 TDs and 11 Ints. Their defense only managed 38 sacks.
Washington should be much improved with CB Josh Norman added to the secondary. He was one of the best cover corners in the league with negative value in run support. He should match in single coverage against Dez Bryant and Odell Beckham, which is a big upgrade for the Redskins. CB Bashaud Breeland was much a better plays in both coverage and run support after struggling in 2014. With continued success, Washington will move in the right direction with their pass defense. DeAngelo Hall had a down year in coverage partly due to a toe issue. This season he'll shift to strong safety where he should have value defending the passing game. S David Bruton looks like the favorite to win the other starting job in the secondary. He graded about league average in 2015.
LB Ryan Kerrigan offered a much better balance skill set in 2015 after struggling in 2014 against the run. He had nine sacks last year compared to 13.5 in 2014. LB Will Compton with a huge liability last year in all areas with starting snaps. He'll probably lose snaps to LB Mason Foster, who was at least league average against the run with some value rushing the QB. Foster has high risk in pass coverage. LB Perry Riley added no value to the Redskins last year. LB Junior Galette missed the 2015 season due to a torn Achilles. He should move into the starting line with upside as pass rushing (22 sacks in 2013 and 2014 with the Saints). LB Preston Smith delivered eight sacks in his rookie season after Washington drafted him in the second round. He needs to improve his rush defense.
DE Chris Baker had success as run defender while delivering a career-high six sacks. DE Ricky Jean-Francois held his ground against the run with no value in the pass rush. DE Stephen Paea struggled in 2015 while missing the last five games of the season due to a toe injury. He flashed some upside in the pass rush in 2014 when he posted a career-high six sacks. NT Jerrell Powe will compete for a starting job after missing the whole 2915 season.
This team defense needs improved play from their defensive line while their secondary will be much improved at the CB position. Their linebacking corps has one upside player with two other options that have a chance to be productive. The Redskins will move closer to league average on the defensive side of the ball with matchup value at times when they play from the lead.
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