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Need to Know: Five Redskins who will be under pressure against the Cowboys

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Need to Know: Five Redskins who will be under pressure against the Cowboys

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, September 17, one day before the Washington Redskins host the Dallas Cowboys.

Timeline

Today's schedule: Walkthrough at Redskins Park, no media availability

Days until: Browns @ Redskins 15; Redskins @ Ravens 22; Eagles @ Redskins 29

Five under pressure vs. the Cowboys

QB Kirk Cousins—Here he is atop the list again this week. He can’t afford a stumbling start like he had last year, not with the Redskins’ schedule dictating a fast start if they are going to be in the playoff hunt. Cousins wasn’t the reason they lost but he didn’t do much to lift up his team either. When you’re getting a $20 million salary and you want to make more, expectations are high.

C Kory Lichtensteiger—His job was threatened on multiple occasions during the offseason. On opening night he commits two false starts and is in the center of a line that couldn’t open up many holes in the running game. The veteran needs to have a mistake free game.

DE Chris Baker—As Baker goes, so goes the Redskins’ defensive line and they will need to have a good day against the Cowboys. Although the Dallas rushing attack sputtered somewhat against the Giants that line is too good and Ezekiel Elliott is too talent for anyone to relax.

ILB Will Compton—He will be calling defensive audibles while rookie QB Dak Prescott is making his call at the line. The Redskins want to see Prescott playing checkers while Compton is playing chess. Compton and the other linebackers also have to make sure they are solid against the run also. If Dallas gets it s running game going it won't matter who's handing off it Elliott and Alfred Morris.

CB Josh Norman—The Steelers debacle wasn’t on him, no matter how you slice it. But he needs to start showing that he is worth the sizable investment the Redskins made in him. When he is on Dez Bryant he needs to shut him down. When he isn’t on Bryant he needs to shut the other receiver down. And making a big play or two would certainly help things.

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In case you missed it 

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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.

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The results aren't pretty.

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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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