Oct 16, 2015, 5:13 AM EDT
Here is what you need to know on this Friday, October 16, two days before the Washington Redskins play the New York Jets.
Read and react
Comments from Jay Gruden and Joe Barry along with my reaction to them.
Joe Barry on the Falcons’ last drive against his defense:
Our mentality was they needed a touchdown. You have a different mentality when the two-minute starts on what they need—do they need a field goal or do they need a touchdown? I’m a firm believer in our rush and coverage . . . We got them to fourth and two with 30 seconds left. We’ve got to find a way to win a down. Whether it’s a sack-fumble, whether it’s a tipped pass, we’re going to make them earn everything they get. We didn’t make the play. They made the play.
React: For all of the discussion about soft coverages and not being aggressive enough, doing anything on a football field does ultimately come down to players making plays. With the Redskins’ depleted secondary, the odds were against them no matter what the scheme. That said, I would have liked to see a little more pass pressure with Atlanta’s main receiving threat, Julio Jones, obviously hampered by his hamstring injury.
Jay Gruden on Morgan Moses’ performance this year:
“I think reps, number one, since training camp and OTAs – really since training camp – and then the comfort level playing right tackle. Like I said before, he played left tackle his last two years at Virginia and then we tried to flip him last year and he wasn’t quite ready. Everything was backwards to him. His sets were different, but having another year under his belt playing just right tackle, I think it’s helped him out the most. And [Offensive Line] Coach [Bill] Callahan has done an excellent job with him. The comfort level with his pass sets, his combination blocks on the right side is the big difference.”
React: Moses has been the Redskins’ biggest surprise contributor this year. Not much was expected of him since he missed the entire offseason program rehabbing his injured foot. Plus they drafted Brandon Scherff fifth overall to play tackle. But they made the shuffle on the line in training camp, Scherff moved over a slot, Moses moved in a right tackle. He has been far from flawless but he has played well enough to think that he will be a solid part of the line going forward.
Barry on his defensive philosophy:
“You know, there’s three things that we’ve really preached since the very first meeting we had back in May. That’s to compete, to be physical and to finish. We’re never going to be satisfied and we’re definitely not satisfied yet. As long as we show up every day and we compete and we play physical and we finish, I think those are the things that we are always going to be striving for and make the fans of the Redskins proud.
React: Of course we have a long way to go this season but it’s so far, so good for Barry’s defense. They are not dominant by any means but they have improved on a lot of meaningful categories including net yards per pass attempt, total yards per game, and, on the bottom line, points per game by almost a full touchdown. And they have done this with a secondary that was not very good to begin with and has had to deal with multiple injuries on top of that. Again, it’s too early to come to a conclusion that Gruden’s controversial decision to hire Barry was the right call. But things are looking up almost a third of the way into the season.
Gruden on the need to get bigger chunks of yardage:
“It’s a matter of when we do take the shots making something out of them. We do need to get more plays in chunks. You know, it’s difficult against a defense like this to think that you’re going to go — we’ve had a lot of good 15/13/14-play drives, I think more than anybody in the league. But we do need to work on our long gains, chunk plays somehow, whether it’s in the running game, screens, or shot plays down the field.”
React: The Redskins’ ability to grind out long drives of 10 plays or more (14 this year with 12 of them resulting in scores) is very useful. But they also could use an occasional quick advance down the field. The Redskins have just two quick strikes this year, drives that started in their own territory that took six plays or fewer and resulted in a touchdown. You’re not going to get those every game but it’s hard to grind out those 10-play drives because each snap increases the odds of a penalty, turnover, missed assignment, or other miscue scuttling the possession.
—Today’s schedule: Practice 11:55; Jay Gruden and Sean McVay news conferences and player availability after practice, approx. 1:00.
—Days until: Redskins @ Jets 2; Bucs @ Redskins 9; Redskins @ Patriots 23
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- The ‘Skins haven’t beaten an AFC East team in a very long time
- OPEN THREAD: Is Jay Gruden a Top 10 NFL head coach?
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- Should the Redskins stick with one back?
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