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Redskins Tuesday minicamp report, defense: Some easy INT's

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Redskins Tuesday minicamp report, defense: Some easy INT's

The Redskins held the first day of their three-day mandatory minicamp with temperatures hovering near 90 and under skies that looked threatening but stayed dry.

Here are my observations on defense and special teams.

—They started off with special teams like they have been doing since last year. Among those running out when the coaches called for the first team kickoff coverage unit were DaMon Cromartie-Smith, Jeron Johnson, Evan Spencer, Trey Wolfe, Duke Ihenacho, Trevardo Williams, Akeem Davis, Trenton Robinson, and Will Compton.

—With the second-team kickoff unit were Phillip Thomas, Matt Jones, Darrel Young, Justin Rogers, Tevin Mitchel, Ja’Gared Davis, Kyshoen Jarrett, and Martrell Spaight.

—I wouldn’t read too much into who is lining up where; at this point it seems that a lot of second- and third-team players are interchangeable so it likely is the same with special teams.

—It’s been pretty rainy in Ashburn lately, making the field soft. Some big chunks were torn out early in the proceedings (insert your own “feeling right at home”/FedEx Field joke here).

—Kirk Cousins threw a swing pass to full back Jordan Campbell. Linebacker Adam Hayward came running over late yelling, “Who the f*** was supposed to be covering the flat?” Evidently it wasn’t Hayward.

—Cornerback Tajh Hasson had two of the easier interceptions a DB can get. On one, a Cousins pass hit receiver Colin Lockett right in the hands. It bounced out and into the arms of Hassan. Later, on the last play of team drills, Colt McCoy threw to the sideline. Hassan was the only player with 8 yards of the pass and he got another pick.

—Among those on the first-team punting unit were Silas Redd, Adam Hayward, Trevardo Williams, Young, and Niles Paul.

—The coaches had the returners field punts while holding onto a second football with one arm. It’s not easy to do and it really makes the players focus.

—The only punt that I saw fumbled was a boomer by Tress Way. Rookie Trey Williams, who was not holding on to a ball with one arm, had it go through his hands.

—Tom Compton was matched up blocking Keenan Robinson on an outside run. Robinson apparently was not pleased with Compton’s technique. “You gonna hold me the whole time?” the linebacker yelled at the tackle.

—The final session of practice was field goal kicking. On the first attempt, Kai Forbath was wide left from about 35 yards.

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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: 2017 NFL MOCK DRAFT 1.0: CORNERING THE MARKET

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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.