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Need to Know: Final thoughts on Redskins vs. Ravens—Washington's best O-line combo?


Need to Know: Final thoughts on Redskins vs. Ravens—Washington's best O-line combo?

Here is what you need to know on this Sunday, October 9, the day the Washington Redskins go up the road to play the Ravens in Baltimore.


Today's schedule: Redskins kickoff 12 noon, CSN; Redskins @ Ravens 1 p.m., FOX

Days until: Eagles @ Redskins 7; Redskins @ Lions 14; Redskins vs. Bengals in London 21

Final thoughts on Redskins vs. Ravens

—Yes, Steve Smith Sr. can beat you deep and Mike Wallace has good vertical speed as well. But the Ravens are basically a plodding passing offense. They are one of just two teams averaging less than 10 yards per pass completion. Baltimore scores on 38 percent of its drives, just a couple of ticks above the league average. The Redskins average 11.9 yards per completion and the score on 53 percent of their drives, second best in the NFL to the Falcons. Look at more advanced analytics, the Redskins are 11th in offensive DVOA at 5.3% while the Ravens are 27th at -12.4%. Washington seems to have substantially more pop in its offense.

—During training camp the general consensus was that the Redskins’ best run-blocking offensive line was, from left to right, Trent Williams, Shawn Lauvao, Spencer Long, Brandon Scherff, and Morgan Moses. That is the line that will play for the Redskins today. We will see how the group wisdom shakes out in reality.

—It’s not breaking news when I tell you that missed tackles have been a problem for the Redskins defense. According to Pro Football Focus they have 40 of them. To compare, the Ravens have 26 misses. The biggest culprit for Washington was safety David Bruton, who had eight; nobody else on the team has more than three. But don’t presume that the problems will largely dissipate with Bruton on injured reserve. His replacement, Duke Ihenacho, has three misses in just 45 snaps played. Maybe if they can cut down on the missed tackles (they won’t be eliminated; every team has some every game) and knock down a few third-down passes the defense can be competent.

—The missed tackles may be a result of Jay Gruden running one of the less physical training camps in the league. The idea was that they might not be as sharp earlier in the year but they would be fresher as the year as the year went since they didn’t beat up on each other in Richmond. Well, it’s October, the time when the easier practices in August should begin to pay off. The Redskins have some injuries but they are better off than some and worse off than others. The Ravens had a fairly physical camp; let's see who has fresher legs in the fourth quarter.

—This is a tough one to figure. The Ravens probably aren’t quite as good as their 3-1 record but they are playing at home. Their top defensive ranking is a bit deceptive since they have yet to play an offense that is as good as, well, the Redskins. The game is in Baltimore but the Redskins proved they can win in a hostile environment in East Rutherford a couple of weeks ago. Can they do it again? I’m going on a hunch more than any logic here:

Redskins 27, Ravens 21

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Report: Redskins to interview former Raiders defensive coordinator

Report: Redskins to interview former Raiders defensive coordinator

The Redskins have set up another interview with a candidate to fill their vacant defensive coordinator position.

According to the Washington Post, Jason Tarver, the defensive coordinator of the Raiders from 2012-2014, will meet with the organization. The date of the interview is not known.

Related: Redskins offensive coordinator resume: Matt Cavanaugh

Before joining the Raiders, Tarver coached in college for five years before the 49ers hired him as a quality control coach. He worked his way up to become the outside linebackers coach, a position he held from 2005-2010. Scot McCloughan was the GM of the 49ers while Tarver was coaching there.

After a year as a defensive coordinator in the college ranks at Stanford, Tarver was hired as the Raiders’ defensive coordinator. He was a defensive assistant for the 2015 49ers and he was out of football last season.

More Redskins: The Redskins week that was

The Redskins have announced interviews with former Browns head coach Mike Pettine and ex-Jaguars coach Gus Bradley. It was reported earlier today that they also will meet with Rob Ryan, most recently the Bills’ defensive coordinator.

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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Redskins plan to interview Rob Ryan for defensive coordinator, per report

Redskins plan to interview Rob Ryan for defensive coordinator, per report

Plenty of Redskins fans wanted the team to interview Rex Ryan for defensive coordinator.

Well, a report shows they aren't talking to Rex, but instead, his brother Rob, according to Albert Breer of MMQB

Rex Ryan's track record as a defensive coordinator is very impressive.

Rob Ryan's track record as a defensive coordinator is, uh, less impressive. 

In 12 seasons as a coordinator, first in Oakland and then with Cleveland, Dallas and New Orleans, Rob Ryan has two Top 5 finishes in yards allowed. He also has finished 31st out of 32 teams in the league in yards allowed three times.

Below is a chart from Pro Football Reference showing his defensive ranks from 2004 when he became coordinator in Oakland all the way through his last job as a coordinator in New Orleans in 2015.


The results aren't pretty.


It should be noted that in 2016, Rob Ryan served as assistant head coach in Buffalo on his brother Rex's staff.

That team's defense finished 19th in yards allowed. 

Gus Bradley and Mike Pettine have interviewed with the Redskins for their vacant defensive coordinator opening.

Washington is also reported to have reached out to Wade Phillips, who took the same position with the Rams, and Steve Wilks, who took the same position with the Carolina Panthers. Internally, outside linebackers coach Greg Manusky also seems to be under some consideration for the position, and a report last week linked former 49ers head coach Jim Tomsula with the Washington defense.

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