Quick Links

Redskins training camp report, day 5: Things get chippy

baker-with-line.png

Redskins training camp report, day 5: Things get chippy

RICHMOND—The Redskins held their fifth full practice of training camp in full pads, football pants and all. Here are my observations:

—Lined up to return punts were DeSean Jackson, Lache Seastrunk, Richard Crawford, Nick Williams, Rashad Ross, and Chris Thompson. Crawford, Williams, and Thompson each fumbled a punt.

—An open-field tackling drill didn’t last long but it was a lot of fun. Safety Ross Madison got a good hit on WR Cody Hoffman.

—Brian Baker gets down to the nitty-gritty on pass rush techniques. Here’s a Vine of one of their drills. (Note: This is my first attempt at this medium, I’m sure there are some refinements that I can make to my technique as well.)

—One more time with the Vine thing, a look at blitz pickups, running backs vs. safeties.

—The defense also did a drill where everyone ran over in pursuit of the ball carrier. Trash cans represented blockers so it wasn’t realistic but the goal is to create the mindset. Ryan Clark talked about it yesterday. “When you’re playing the LeSean McCoys and the Darren Sproles, you have to gang tackle those guys,” he said. “You have to get a lot of people around that ball.”

—Silas Redd has shown some promise but he has to remember what Gruden says all the time—low man wins. Near the goal line in an 11 on 11 session, Redd hit the line upright. Very quickly, he was knocked back a couple of yards behind the line of scrimmage.

—Lache Seastrunk didn’t try to go through the defense he went around it. The rookie displayed some impressive speed scooting around the left end and into the end zone from about 10 yards out.

—When Robert Griffin III was a rookie and new to the team and Pierre Garçon was new to the team after signing as a free agent, Griffin threw to Garçon frequently during training camp to develop chemistry between the quarterback and receiver. This year, Griffin is strongly focusing on throwing to Andre Roberts and DeSean Jackson.

—During 11 on 11 drills, Griffin saw an opening up the middle and shot through it, picking up about 20 yards. He looked very much like the 2012 version of RG3, covering the 20 yards in the blink of an eye. This is why Gruden, while he is going to cut way back on planned runs by Griffin, will encourage him to run out of the pocket when the situation calls for it.

—Things got a bit heated, both literally as it got hotter and figuratively as a couple of scuffles broke out. First Ted Bolser and Chase Minnifield got into it and then it was cornerback Peyton Thompson and Roberts. The latter was a push, with Roberts losing his helmet but getting off a solid punch.

Quick Links

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.

Quick Links

Award Tour: JP & Tandler select Redskins Offensive Player of the Year

Award Tour: JP & Tandler select Redskins Offensive Player of the Year

With the 2017 offseason about to kick into high gear, Redskins Insiders JP Finlay and Rich Tandler are going to take one last look at 2016 in the coming days. That’s right, it’s time to hand out awards for Coach of the Year, Special Teams Player of the Year, Rookie of the Year, Defensive Player of the Year and Offensive Player of the Year.

We’ve picked our top coaches and the Special Teams. and defensive POY’s. Today we select the Offensive Player of the Year.

Tandler: I don’t see any need to overthink this. The Redskins set a team record for total offensive yards in a season and it was mostly due to the play of Kirk Cousins. He shattered his own team records in nearly every major passing stat. He was a steady hand as the line underwent some turmoil with the suspension of Trent Williams and injury situations. His primary running backs were a fumble-prone second-year player and an undrafted rookie. The team’s best pass catcher, tight end Jordan Reed, missed four games with injuries and he was obviously hampered by a shoulder injury in a few others. Cousins did slump towards the end of the season and the interception he threw late in the season finale killed off the Redskins’ playoff chances. But he was the one primarily responsible for the team posting winning record in consecutive seasons for the first time in nearly 20 years.

More Redskins: Early first-round draft possibilities

Finlay: I kinda wanted to overthink this but Tandler yelled at me. DeSean Jackson was arguably the Redskins best threat, and Pierre Garçon was the most dependable player on the team. Jordan Reed showed how great he can be, but injuries limited his performance. In the end, the award goes to Kirk Cousins. It has to. The guy nearly threw for 5,000 yards and he broke his own passing record that he set last season. What happens before the March 1 franchise deadline not withstanding, Cousins was the 'Skins best offensive player in 2016.

<iframe width="100%" height="300" style="background-color:transparent; display:block; max-width: 700px;" frameborder="0" allowtransparency="allowtransparency" scrolling="no" src="//embeds.audioboom.com/posts/5490107-episode-39-sean-mcvay-is-gone-and-nothing-but-questions-on-defense-too/embed/v4?eid=AQAAAApifli7xVMA" title="audioBoom player"></iframe>