Grade vs. Rams: DComment:After jumping from the 31stranked defense to 13thlast season, there was hope that the Redskins unit would take the next step and join the leagues elite. So far, though, it hasnt happened and after Sundays 31-28 loss to the Rams theres legitimate concern whether its even possible.After two games, the unit ranks 28thin yards allowed per game (405.0) and 27thin points yielded (31.5). And now, defensive coordinator Jim Haslett must figure out how to overcome the loss of starters Brian Orakpo and Adam Carriker for the remainder of the season.But lets get back to Sundays unsightly performance in St. Louis. The Redskins returned a fumble for a touchdown, recovered another and intercepted a pass. But thats it for good news.Sam Bradford and the youthful Rams had lost eight games in a row, limped in with an injury depleted line and were coming off a season in which they ranked last in points scored per game (12.1). The Redskins, however, made them look like the Greatest Show on Turf Rams of the late 1900s.Bradford and wide receiver Danny Amendola shredded the secondary, particularly in the first half even when everyone at Edward Jones Dome knew what was coming next. Twelve of Amendolas 15 receptions (a record high against the Redskins) came before halftime (on the Rams second drive, Amendola caught passes on six of seven plays). Bradford, meantime, finished with 310 passing yards and three touchdowns. It marked Bradfords third highest passing day of his career, while he equaled his high for touchdowns in a game.Against the run, the Redskins werent much better. The Rams managed to rack up 151 yards, despite losing star running back Steven Jackson in the second quarter to injury. With Jackson sidelined, rookie Daryl Richardson rushed for 83 yards, including a 53-yard scamper in the third quarter, on 15 carries.If the loss of Carriker (torn quadriceps) in the first quarter and Orakpo (torn pectoral muscle) and cornerback Josh Wilson (concussion) in the third were at the root of the Redskins struggles Sunday, watch out. It could be a long season for the D.
Redskins fans, the following sentence may cause your jaw to drop so hard, it will break through the floor of wherever you are, and maybe even break through the floor below that one, too: Andre Roberts has been a nice role player for the Detroit Lions so far this year.
Is the ex-Redskin, whom many fans dubbed "Dropberts" because he wasn't exactly the most sure-handed receiver to come through town, setting the league ablaze with his performance? No, not even close.
But Roberts has done very well as a punt returner for the 3-3 Lions (his major highlight being an 85-yard score versus the Bears) and, last week, hauled in one heck of a touchdown catch against the Rams.
Here are those two plays (no, the man you're about to see in the two videos isn't someone else who just so happens to be named Andre Roberts. It is in fact the same Andre Roberts who played for the Redskins in 2014 and 2015):
Is the legendary Andre Roberts Revenge Game about to be upon us? It's almost time to find out.
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Last year the Redskins got some quality defensive snaps from Kyshoen Jarrett, a rookie defensive back out of Virginia Tech. He was a valued member of the defense but it appears that his career has been derailed by a severe neck injury.
They may have found another Hokie who can fill at least some of the role that Jarrett filled last year. Third-round pick Kendall Fuller started off slowly as he nursed an injured knee back to health. He was inactive the first three games and then he came in at nickel cornerback in Week 4 and it looks like it will be hard for anyone to push him out of the lineup. Last week, in fact, Jay Gruden said as much.
“I think he’s going to be a nickel here for a long time,” said Gruden. “Yes, we love the way he plays. I love his work ethic.”
This week, Joe Barry was even more expansive in his praise of the rookie and of the program that produced both Jarrett and Fuller.
“You know, I’m going to give Virginia Tech a little plug right here because I said the same thing about Kyshoen Jarrett last year,” said the Redskins defensive coordinator. “He was just very mature, very football savvy, and Kendall is absolutely in the same mold. He is a rookie. He’s obviously young, that’s obvious. But he’s very mature for his age, football mature I’m talking about.”
What does he mean by “football mature”?
“Very detailed, asks great questions,” said Barry. “You know, the biggest thing, playing any position but especially playing DB and specifically the nickel corner, you’ve got have a plan every week on how you attack the guy that you play based on what type of player that is, and usually young guys don’t get that. Usually young guys say, ‘Oh, I get the call, I’ve got to play the call.’ You know, ‘I’ve got to play my leverage, I’ve got to do my job.’ But you learn as you’re in this league, you’ve got to approach every single wide receiver different. And it’s cool that Kendall already understands that.”
Fuller had some good background coming into the NFL. He went to Virginia Tech, know and “DB University” for producing a number of NFL corners and safeties including Fuller’s three older brothers. He has been exposed to NFL-level defensive back savvy since his older brother Vincent was drafted by the Titans in 2005.
Vincent played until 2011. Kendall would be seeing his brother Corey playing for the Lions on Sunday but Corey is on the PUP list with foot injury. Kyle Fuller of the Bears also is on the shelf, sent to IR after getting a knee scoped. So for the time being, Kendall is the only active Fuller in the league. But he carries the benefit of growing up in an NFL family.
“He already really gets it and that’s why I talk about his awareness, his savviness, his instincts, whatever you want to call it,” said Barry. “He has that and it’s really neat.”