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Need to Know: Alfred Morris' top five performances

Need to Know: Alfred Morris' top five performances

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, May 24, three days before the start of OTAs.

Nickel coverage

(I'm on vacation this week so we're going to rerun some of your favorite lists from earlier this year. If you're in Colrolla, NC this week, say hi!)

Here are Alfred Morris’ five best career games in terms of yards gained rushing.

1. Week 17, 2012 vs. Cowboys—If Morris retired tomorrow he’d have a permanent place in the hearts of Redskins fans for this game alone. With Robert Griffin III slowed by a knee injury, Morris took the team on his back, rushing for 200 yards and three touchdowns as the Redskins won to take the NFC East.

2. Week 10, 2013 @ Vikings—This is the only loss on this list. Morris rushed for 139 yards and the Redskins built a 27-14 third-quarter lead. They couldn’t hold on and lost 34-27.

3. Week 14, 2012 vs. Ravens—This game is remembered mostly for the final drive, when Kirk Cousins took over for Griffin and passed for the TD to put the game into over time, and the extra period when Richard Crawford’s put return set up the winning field goal. But in the first 58 minutes of the game, Morris helped keep them in it by rushing for 129 yards and a touchdown.

4. Week 13, 2012 vs. Giants—A week before the Ravens game the Redskins played a Monday night game against the Giants and Morris rushed for 124 yards. The most important yards came in the fourth quarter. He wasn’t spectacular but his 20 yards on seven carries after the Redskins took a one-point lead early in the period ran clock and moved the chains.

5. Week 9, 2013 vs. Chargers—Darrel Young was the definitive touchdown vulture in this game, scoring on runs of 1, 1, and 4 yards after Morris’ 121 yards rushing helped the team get close.

Bonus stat: I came across this while looking up the numbers here—In 12 career games vs. the NFC East, Morris has 1,119 yards rushing. That’s a 16-game pace of just shy of 1,500 yards.

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Timeline

—It’s been 146 days since the Redskins played a game; it will be 106 days until the play the Texans in their season opener.

—Days until: OTAs start 3; Training camp 60; Redskins @ Eagles 122

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Redskins defensive coordinator resume: Jason Tarver

Redskins defensive coordinator resume: Jason Tarver

The Redskins have interviewed some high-profile candidates for their open defensive coordinator position. When it was reported that they will meet with former Raiders defensive coordinator Jason Tarver, the reaction among the fans was, “Who?”

Let’s take a look at what Tarver’s qualifications are to get the job of running the Redskins’ defense.

Before becoming a coordinator: At the age of 22, Tarver took a coaching job at West Valley College in California, and did that while earning his bachelor’s degree in biochemistry from Santa Clara. After that he was a graduate assistant at UCLA for three years before getting into the NFL in 2001, when the 49ers hired him as a quality control coach. Tarver worked his way up to outside linebackers coach in 2005 and did that job until 2010, when he was let go went Mike Singletary was fired as the head coach. After a year as the defensive coordinator at Stanford, Dennis Allen hired Tarver to run the Raiders defense in 2012.

More Redskins: Early first-round draft possibilities

Note: If you want more complete stats on Tarver’s defenses check out his page on Pro Football Reference. DVOA stats via Football Outsiders. A negative DVOA percentage is better than a positive number. Zero is average.

For players, * designates Pro Bowl selection, + designates first-team All-Pro

2012 Raiders (4-12)

Rankings: Yards 5,672 (18th), points 443 (28th), takeaways 19 (26th), 3rd down 39.1% (20th), DVOA 12.5% 29th
Notable players: DT Richard Seymour, DE Lamarr Houston

It should be noted that Allen had a defensive background so he had a hand in these numbers. This team just wasn’t very good as indicated by the fact that Seymour, at age 33, was one of their best defensive players.

2013 Raiders (4-12)

Rankings: Yards 5,918 (22nd), points 453 (29th), takeaways 22 (21st), 3rd down 43.1% (28th), DVOA 10.3% (26th)
Notable players: S Charles Woodson

They did make an effort to shore up the defense by bringing back Woodson and drafting cornerback D.J. Hayden in the first round. But Hayden only played in eight games and Woodson could only contribute so much at age 37. The pass defense struggled, ranking 29th in DVOA.

Related: Redskins offensive coordinator resume: Matt Cavanaugh

2014 Raiders (3-13)

Rankings: 5,721 (21st), points 452 (32nd), takeaways 14 (30th), 3rd down 38.5% (14th), DVOA 6.3% (26th)
Notable players: LB Khalil Mack, S Woodson

Allen was fired after an 0-4 start and Tony Sparano took over as interim head coach the rest of the way. Sparano has an offensive background so perhaps Tarver is more fully accountable for these results than those in other seasons. They did draft Mack with the fifth overall pick but his impact as a rookie was limited as recorded four sacks. Hayden again missed half of the season and, again, the defense was near the bottom of the NFL.

Stay up to date on the Redskins! Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page www.Facebook.com/RealRedskins and follow him on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.

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Award Tour: JP & Tandler select Redskins Offensive Player of the Year

Award Tour: JP & Tandler select Redskins Offensive Player of the Year

With the 2017 offseason about to kick into high gear, Redskins Insiders JP Finlay and Rich Tandler are going to take one last look at 2016 in the coming days. That’s right, it’s time to hand out awards for Coach of the Year, Special Teams Player of the Year, Rookie of the Year, Defensive Player of the Year and Offensive Player of the Year.

We’ve picked our top coaches and the Special Teams. and defensive POY’s. Today we select the Offensive Player of the Year.

Tandler: I don’t see any need to overthink this. The Redskins set a team record for total offensive yards in a season and it was mostly due to the play of Kirk Cousins. He shattered his own team records in nearly every major passing stat. He was a steady hand as the line underwent some turmoil with the suspension of Trent Williams and injury situations. His primary running backs were a fumble-prone second-year player and an undrafted rookie. The team’s best pass catcher, tight end Jordan Reed, missed four games with injuries and he was obviously hampered by a shoulder injury in a few others. Cousins did slump towards the end of the season and the interception he threw late in the season finale killed off the Redskins’ playoff chances. But he was the one primarily responsible for the team posting winning record in consecutive seasons for the first time in nearly 20 years.

More Redskins: Early first-round draft possibilities

Finlay: I kinda wanted to overthink this but Tandler yelled at me. DeSean Jackson was arguably the Redskins best threat, and Pierre Garçon was the most dependable player on the team. Jordan Reed showed how great he can be, but injuries limited his performance. In the end, the award goes to Kirk Cousins. It has to. The guy nearly threw for 5,000 yards and he broke his own passing record that he set last season. What happens before the March 1 franchise deadline not withstanding, Cousins was the 'Skins best offensive player in 2016.

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