September 20, 2019

Washington Redskins: Bye Week Tuesday Press Conference Wrap Up

On the last day of practice before the Washington Redskins will take some time off during the bye week, Jay Gruden addressed the media on what will be transpiring behind closed doors.

With regards to injury, Gruden did not want to “project and guess” of who would be available against the patriots but did admit he has “high hopes for the majority of them”. Gruden’s main message to his players was to “get their bodies healthy” both physically and mentally. Although some may see it is unfair during their time off, I think Gruden was correct to ask the team to “tune in” to New England’s matchup against the Dolphins Thursday night as another step to be “mentally ready to go”.

Barring any setbacks, I would expect both DeSean Jackson (hamstring) and DeAngelo Hall (toe) to return to the lineup with the likes of Chris Culliver (knee) and Kory Lichtensteiger (shoulder) also having good chances to suit up. The statuses of Ryan Kerrigan (hand), Keenan Robinson (ribs), Perry Riley (leg), and Bashaud Breeland (hamstring) are not crystal clear yet, but my guess would be all but Breeland are able to play against New England.

Gruden’s number one priority over the bye week is “fixing the running game” which has amassed just  135 yards over the past three weeks after the team exploded onto the season with 343 yards in the first two games of the year. There is definitely a correlation with the loss of left guard Shawn Lauvao in Week 3 of the regular season, but there is no excuse for the lack of execution from all involved where you can only muster up 52 yards a game. Nonetheless, Gruden credits the offensive line for doing a “good job” despite injuries and praises the right side of the line anchored by rookie Brandon Scherff and Morgan Moses who have been “excellent as far as their growth”.

Another area in which the Redskins have struggled recently is in their pass rush, which is exposing their deficiencies in the secondary while they deal with substantial injuries. Gruden admits that they have missed about five sacks this week between Ricky Jean-Francois, Trent Murphy, and Jason Hatcher but the guys are “rushing hard”. The team will work on finishing plays when they come back, which also includes individual tackling of non-quarterbacks.

On the impact from Scot McCloughan‘s first draft class with the Washington Redskins, Gruden is happy with the production from Brandon Scherff and Matt Jones, part of the reason why they are getting all the playing time they are. Gruden is also pleased with the contribution from Jamison Crowder who has “emerged as a top slot receiver”, Preston Smith who has done “some good things”, and sleeper sixth round pick Kyshoen Jarrett who has been “outstanding” because of his contribution as a nickle corner through injuries.

The coaching staff will have some time off, Gruden does not know whether he will take any, and reconvene to start self-scouting and then preparing for the defending world champion New England Patriots during the additional off days.

About Neil Dalal

Neil Dalal is a Staff Writer for District Sports Page covering the Redskins, Wizards, and Maryland Terrapins. Neil grew up in Silver Spring, MD and attends the University of Maryland. Neil has loved everything related to the Redskins, Wizards, Capitals, and Terrapins since he was eight years old. However, he favors the Orioles, as he started watching baseball before the Expos moved to DC. You can follow Neil on Twitter @NeilDalal96.

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