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Need to Know: Comparing the Bengals and Redskins

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Need to Know: Comparing the Bengals and Redskins

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, January 11, 59 days from the start of NFL free agency.

Nickel coverage

Here are five areas on offense where Jay Gruden’s Cincinnati Bengals ranked considerably better than the Redskins in 2013:

1. Sacks per pass attempt: Andy Dalton was sacked on 4.9 percent of his pass attempts, the third-best in the league. Redskins QB’s were sacked on 7.0 percent of their attempts, 13th in the league.

2. Passing yards/play: This takes yardage lost to sacks into account. The Bengals averaged 7.05 yards/pass play, 10th in the NFL while Washington averaged 6.14, 23rd.

3. Fourth down conversion percentage: This is not a major category but these are usually critical plays and a team frequently converts them as much on the play call as they do on physical talent. Cincinnati converted 12 of 21 (57.1%), 11th in the league. The Redskins were 6 of 20 (30%), ranked 28th.

4. Red zone percentage: The Bengals shined in this area, converting 73.9 percent of their red zone opportunities into touchdowns. That was second in the league. The Redskins converted 52 percent of the time, tied for 20th.

5. Goal to go percentage: When the Bengals got a first down at the ten yard line or closer they were close to automatic, getting at TD 84 percent of the time, best in the NFL. The Redskins managed to punch it in 73.1 percent of the time, 13th in the league.

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Timeline

—It’s been 13 days since the Redskins played a game; it will be about 239 days until they play another one.

—Days until: NFL free agency 59; Offseason workouts start 86; 2014 NFL Draft 117

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Gruden talks about his humble beginnings

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Jonathan Allen plans to model his game after two other All-Pro defenders

Jonathan Allen plans to model his game after two other All-Pro defenders

New Redskins defensive lineman Jonathan Allen is looking to pattern his game after two All-Pro linemen. 

"I'm a very versatile player and can do anything. I love watching Geno Atkins and Aaron Donald," Washington’s first-round draft pick told reporters on a conference call.

The Redskins will be very happy if Allen can be as productive as Atkins and Donald. Atkins has played for the Bengals since the 2010 season. He has been durable, playing in 16 games in six of his seven seasons, and effective, producing 52 sacks, a good total for a defensive tackle. 

MORE REDSKINS: A COMPLETE RECAP OF ROUND 1

Donald was a first-round pick of the Rams in 2014. He was a first-team All-Pro in each of the past two seasons, recording a total of 28 sacks in his three seasons. 

Both players combine outstanding physical talent and high motors. Allen has selected two pretty good role models to follow. 

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

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Gruden: Redskins have no concerns about Allen's shoulders

Gruden: Redskins have no concerns about Allen's shoulders

Jonathan Allen was the perfect pick for the Redskins, filling a need with a player who clearly was the best on the board.

Allen’s slide from a top-five prospect to the middle of the first round is believed to be because of issues with both of his shoulders. During his time at Alabama he suffered labral tears in both of his shoulders that were surgically repaired and he also suffers from mild arthritis in both of them. That apparently scared some teams off but not the Redskins.

“We didn't have any concerns,” said coach Jay Gruden. “We talked to Dr. [James] Andrews, he gave thumbs up on him. We feel very good about the injuries.”

Then why did a top talent slide all the way back to the Redskins’ pick?

“As far as him falling to us, their were a lot of things that happened in the draft, three quarterbacks went, a couple of receivers went pretty high, a lot of offensive players went that probably not a lot of people expected,” said Gruden. “So, some of these very good defensive players fell to us and we're happy.”

Allen told reporters that the shoulders did not cause him any problems while he was playing.

“I didn’t even wear a brace for the [2016] season,” Allen said. “So, I mean, it doesn’t even affect me. Every team I talked to, shoulders were medically cleared, no problems. Probably the best I’ve felt in the last four years, to be honest.”

Alabama team doctor Lyle Cain’s assessment of Allen’s shoulders align with those of the player and Gruden.

"He's played without any problems," Cain told NFL Media last month. "This is something that a lot of offensive linemen and defensive linemen have, things guys play with their whole careers. It's just a little earlier for him because he got hurt in college."

We will see how this plays out. It’s possible that his injury problems could limit his effectiveness or cut his career short. But clearly the Redskins saw that the Allen’s talent made the injury risk a worthwhile gamble.

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.