February 24, 2020

Washington Redskins: Week 7 Thursday Press Conference Wrap Up

The injuries continue to be a topic of concern for the Washington Redskins, which was the topic of discussion for the majority of Jay Gruden‘s media availability. However, new defensive coordinator Joe Barry was able to discuss football through evaluations of the past and looking forward to the upcoming game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

The one football game related point that Gruden discussed was what a healthy Jordan Reed would do to jumpstart the Redskins sputtering offense. Having Reed available will add the element of long completions back into the playbook, which Gruden knows needs to be done in order to help the run game. With Reed being a major mismatch against most linebackers and safeties, the Florida product should be able to continuously sit down in the middle of the field behind eight man fronts that are trying to stop the run. Then teams will be unable to simply commit to the run as they have been for much of the past two games.

Although Joe Barry knows that it is not just one guy who is responsible for the Redskins horrible run defense the past two weeks, there have been some repeated culprits. Namely Perry Riley and DaShon Goldson because of bad angles to the football, misreading gap assignments, and poor tackling. To Riley’s credit, Barry stuck up for his middle linebacker by pointing out that he is still knocking off rust from his calf injury that kept him out after playing well early in the season. Barry assessed the reason for breakdowns on each of the Jets seven big runs which resulted in the bulk of their ground total. Luckily for the Redskins if they clean those plays up, they were fairly sound against the run.

On his side of the ball, Barry said that the third quarter struggles have “been addressed” partly by cranking up practice halfway through. This comes after Gruden said the big thing about the third quarter approach is “awareness”. Like Gruden, Barry said “I have no idea” why it has been an issue for the defense. The coaching staff is trying to implement the game plan of starting fast from the opening kickoff, but then “starting faster” out of halftime. When it comes to the coaching staff, Gruden said “not really” when asked if their role would change during intermission. We will wait until Sunday to see if the Redskins can finally turn around their pitiful play coming out of halftime.

With regards to the Buccaneers offense. Gruden hopes to disrupt Jameis Winston by forcing him to be “one dimensional”, a tough task as Doug Martin has been playing at a high level during the past two games. Joe Barry expects a lot of screen plays from the Buccaneers and has made that a point of emphasis during the week after the Redskins were beat last week with a screen that shifted the momentum.

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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