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Need to Know: Callahan says Redskins' running scheme will be diverse

Need to Know: Callahan says Redskins' running scheme will be diverse

Here is what you need to know on this Tuesday, June 23, 37 days before the Washington Redskins start training camp

 

Read and react

Here are some quotes from offensive line coach Bill Callahan’s media session during minicamp and my reaction to them:

On guard Spencer Long:
“Coming out he was a very mobile, strong, athletic-type guard so putting him into that position and trying to elevate his skill level is challenging for all of us. Hopefully he can hang on to it and compete for that starting spot.”
Callahan and the organization took something of a leap of faith in letting go of Chris Chester last month and essentially handing the right guard job to a player who has all of 18 NFL snaps under his belt. Callahan believes that he can be coached up and get the job done.

On changes in the Redskins’ running scheme:
“I think when you have balance in you running game, whether it’s the gap scheme, the zone scheme, using your draws, using wide zones, or tight zones, or whatever that may be I think it just keeps the defense off balance and it plays to your players’ strengths.”
As with the Cowboys last year, the Redskins aren’t going to go with power blocking plays exclusively. They will mix it up. I would still look for more power than zone because of the last several words of that quote.

More on playing to strengths:
“When you walk in the door you look at the players first and what they do best and you fashion a system around their strengths and their skill levels. That’s what we’re trying to do in this OTA and this minicamp session.”
Or you can walk in the door and replace one starter with a top draft pick and give another one the heave-ho and replace him with a second-year player. They already had Trent Williams, who is scheme versatile, and Shawn Lauvao, who was a fish out of water in the Redskins’ zone-oriented scheme last year. By drafting Brandon Scherff and elevating Long they transformed the line into one that is better suited to just push defenders out of the way. I’d say they adjusted the talent to run the scheme they want.

When asked about the enthusiasm he displays on the job:
“I love it, I absolutely love it. I look forward to practice every day. There’s nothing like it. I’m just an old school ball coach, you know what I mean? . . . I have a passion for this game. I love the game and what it stands for and what it’s all about, what it brings to the table and what it gives to a person and what they learn from it.”
I have to think most NFL coaches also love the game—you couldn’t put in all the hours that they do if they didn’t—but Callahan expresses it better than most I’ve heard.

Timeline

—It’s been 177 days since the Redskins played a game. It will be 82 days until they play the Dolphins at FedEx Field.

Days until: Redskins training camp starts 37; Preseason opener @ Browns 51; final cuts 74

If you have any questions about what's going on at Redskins Park, hit me up in the comments. And I'm always on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.

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In case you missed it

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New #RedskinsTalk Podcast: How many game balls go out after dominant win over Raiders?

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New #RedskinsTalk Podcast: How many game balls go out after dominant win over Raiders?

JP Finlay, Rich Tandler and Mitch Tischler give their instant analysis from FedEx Field in the immediate wake of Washington's dominating 27-10 win over Oakland.

Want more Redskins? Click here to follow JP on Facebook and check out @JPFinlayCSN for live updates via Twitter! Click here for the #RedskinsTalk on Apple Podcastshere for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!

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Five takeaways: A lot to like about the Redskins' dominant primetime win

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Five takeaways: A lot to like about the Redskins' dominant primetime win

Here are my five takeaways from the Redskins’ 27-10 win over the Raiders:

This was the Redskins best defensive performance since 1992. That was the last time they held an opponent to under 128 total yards. They were physical, smart, determined and they made plays. If not for two turnovers they would have had a shutout. Oakland did not cross the Washington 48 without the benefit of a gift. Just dominant. 

With a strong defense, you can do what you want to on offense. I asked Kirk Cousins how much running for a couple of yards a pop as Samaje Perine was doing early in the game helped the offense. He answered in part by saying that the offense can afford to run for a low average per carry when the defense is playing so well. That's true. A punt isn't a bad play when you are confident that you are likely to get the ball back three plays later. 

Chris Thompson just keeps getting better every week. His patience when he has the ball in his hands and his ability to burst into the opening when it's there are textbook excellent. Oh yeah, his open field speed, which he gets to show off after being patient and cutting, is also amazing. Even the smaller plays, like two near the end of the half, when he wove his way through the cracks in the defense and then got out of bounds after gaining everything he could, are fun to watch. He is the Redskins' offensive MVP so far. 

Doctson showed why the Redskins drafted him on one flash. Nobody is going to give Josh Doctson an MVP award but we did see his potential when he went up and took that deep pass away from David Amerson for the touchdown. Plays like that make you see why the Redskins drafted him in the first round and why they have been patient with him. He will need to develop consistency but in the meantime, splash plays like that help a lot.

It’s hard to find fault in this one. Normally in these posts, I try to find a positive in a loss and something to be critical of in a win. But it’s really hard to find much to be critical about in the immediate aftermath of this one. Jamison Crowder’s muff of a punt certainly was an issue and perhaps Samaje Perine could have made more out of the line’s blocking for him. But from the defense to Cousins to Thompson to Zach Brown to D.J. Swearinger and many more, it was as dominant a game as we’ve seen from this team in a while. Can they keep it up? Tune in next Monday from Arrowhead Stadium and we’ll find out.

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