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Need to Know: RG3 chooses to remain positive

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Need to Know: RG3 chooses to remain positive

Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, October 31, three days before the Washington Redskins host the San Diego Chargers.

Nickel coverage

Five notes and quotes from Redskins Park:

1. Wide receiver Josh Morgan played just 19 of the Redskins’ 71 offensive snaps against the Broncos. He’s a bit mystified as to why his role has been reduced so drastically this year. “Nobody's happy when they get a reduced role. Whatever they ask you to do you just do,” he said. “I am healthy. I'm definitely healthier, I feel good, my body feels good. I don't ask no questions I just go out there and try to win games.”

2. Linebacker Rob Jackson may find himself covering Chargers tight end Antonio Gates, who is having one of the best seasons of his 11-year career. If there are any great secrets to doing so, Jackson wasn’t talking about them. “I don't think you can stop him, you just have to kind of limit him,” said Jackson. “No touchdowns, obviously. If he does make the catch battle to the ball, get him down, tackle him, no yards after the catch, things like that.”

3. We noted here yesterday that the Chargers have twice won 1:00 games in the Eastern time zone this year. On a conference call with reporters, San Diego coach Mike McCoy said that they start their days early on a regular basis. “I firmly believe and have sold the team that this is one of 16 games and . . . it doesn’t matter what time we play. It’s an opportunity,” the first-year coach said. “We start early in morning. We have 7:20 meetings every day, so we’ve done a nice job at this point in time on the road.”

4. Mike Shanahan was asked how he keeps players “happy” if they don’t think they’re getting the ball enough. His old-school answer was predictable. “You’re not trying to keep everybody happy, you’re trying to get people to perform,” he said. It’s not my job to keep them happy, but you talk about the things they do poorly.”

5. How does Robert Griffin III cope with being the struggling quarterback of a 2-5 team? Accentuate the positive. “It’s very trying. It’s a test and you’re going to get put through tests in your life and you’ve got to decide how you’re going to react to them,” said Griffin. “You can react in a negative way or a positive way. I choose to be positive. I don’t go out there and scream at guys. We talked about this before, but my way of leading, you have to be positive.”

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Stat of the day

—After Sunday, the Redskins will have played eight games and they will have faced five of the top 10 quarterbacks in the NFL in terms of passer rating—Peyton Manning, Philip Rivers, Aaron Rodgers, Tony Romo, and Matthew Stafford

Timeline

—Days until: Chargers @ Redskins 3; Redskins @ Vikings 7; Redskins @ Eagles 17

—Today’s schedule: Player availability 11:15; Jim Haslett news conference 12:00; Practice 1:00; Kyle Shanahan and Mike Shanahan news conferences after practice (approx. 3:00; all news conferences streamed live on CSNwashington.com)

In case you missed it

Tandler talks about O-line, Redskins' chances

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#RedskinsTalk Podcast Episode 40 - Seriously, when will the Redskins pick a coordinator?

#RedskinsTalk Podcast Episode 40 - Seriously, when will the Redskins pick a coordinator?

As the Redskins settle into the offseason without both an offensive and defensive coordinator, JP Finlay and Rich Tandler debate who will get the jobs, and when they will be announced. 

Related: NFL Mock Draft 1.0

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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.