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Orakpo, Redskins will face improved Eagles' O-line

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Orakpo, Redskins will face improved Eagles' O-line

We don’t know how much of an effect Chip Kelly’s new scheme will have on the Eagles’ offense. It could boom, it could bust. But one advantage Kelly will have over what Andy Reid last year is a solid pair of bookend tackles.

Jason Peters, one of the best in the game, returns at left tackle after missing all of 2012 with an Achilles injury. The Eagles tried Demetress Bell there for a while and by the time the Redskins played them for the first time in Week 11 they had turned to Kind Dunlap. Neither was even up to “just a guy” level; they were both awful.

They invested their first draft pick, the fourth overall, in Lane Johnson, an athletic tackle out of Oklahoma. Even right of the bat he should be a major upgrade over Dennis Kelly, the stiff who was at right tackle for both Redskins-Eagles games last year.

The Eagles had issues in the interior of the line as well and it showed. In their two games with the Redskins Philly rushed for just 170 yards. They also gave up nine sacks to a Redskins team that had just 32 sacks on the season.

One would expect the Eagles to be better in both pass protection and running the ball just by virtue of the return of Peters and the addition of Johnson. The Redskins, of course, have Brian Orakpo back from injury and he will line up against Peters on most snaps. We will see who has the advantage.

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Pierre-Paul injury a big loss for Redskins' playoff rival

Pierre-Paul injury a big loss for Redskins' playoff rival

When you’re fighting for a playoff spot, it’s not only about what happens to you. It’s also about what happens to the teams you’re competing against for that playoff spot. And one of the Redskins’ main competitors got some very bad news this morning.

The Giants, who are in the No. 5 spot in the NFC, the first wild card spot, got word today that defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul has had sports hernia surgery. The recovery time is at least four weeks, probably more like six. The Giants’ season is likely to be over by the time six weeks elapse, barring a playoff run without one of their best defensive players.

Pierre-Paul has helped solidify what was a shaky Giants defense last year. He has seven sacks and a fumble recovery returned for a touchdown. He has been heating up down the stretch with 5.5 sacks in his last three games.

His loss is a big blow for the Giants. They are a game ahead of the Buccaneers, who hold the No. 6 spot, and a game and a half ahead of the Redskins, who are currently seventh.

The Redskins play New York in Week 17 so the Redskins have to pick up just one game on the Giants over the next three to have a shot at passing them in the season finale.

The chances of that happening looked pretty good with Washington playing playing three teams with losing records in the Eagles, Panthers, and Bears and the Giants going against division leaders Dallas and Detroit in addition to the Eagles. With the Giants now without Pierre-Paul, the Redskins’ probabilities got tilted in their direction a little bit more.

Just finishing ahead of the Giants wouldn’t guarantee a playoff spot but it would come close. It would mean that the Redskins would have at least nine wins and the Redskins’ tie means that two teams would have to get to 10 wins to knock them out of the playoffs. The Bucs have to win three more games to get to nine wins and the Packers and Vikings would have to run the table.

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Redskins Stat Breakdown: What worked — and what didn't — against Arizona

Redskins Stat Breakdown: What worked — and what didn't — against Arizona

CSN has teamed up with The Edge Systems to provide the occasional statistical review of Redskins game film. The Edge is analytical football software currently being used by coaches in the NFL, SEC, ACC and the media, providing some of the fastest and best data in football.

Below is a breakdown of the Redskins run game against Arizona - a game coach Jay Gruden admitted did not feature enough carries for Robert Kelley. 

The Redskins had a lot of success with their GAP runs early in the game.

In the first half they were successful on 75 percent of their GAP runs. 

As the game wore on the Redskins moved away from what had been successful and only ran two GAP runs in the second half.

As the Redskins power run game vanished, so did their prospects for winning the game.

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