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Redskins-Lions keys to victory: offense

The Redskins were able to keep the running game going against a talented Bears run-stopping defense. Ryan Torain has consecutive 100-yard games rushing. He was able to run against the Bears defense. So he should be able to run against the much weaker run defense of the Lions.

Torain could be the difference in the Detroit game. He could go for a career-high day. So with that being said, the Redskins once again will help themselves if they run the ball successfully. Lions quarterback Matt Stafford is just returning from an injury that has kept him out for most of the season. He's young and not yet considered one of the NFL's elite. If the Redskins' offense can run and control the clock -- and put some points on the board -- I believe a rusty Stafford could start trying to force the ball in the Lions' passing game and turn it over.

The Lions aren't the best team, but they have a very aggressive defensive unit. They have some real good young talent like tackle Ndamukong Suh and proven vets like linebacker Julian Peterson. They get after teams with their pass rush.

The offensive line must do a better job of protecting Donovan McNabb. If he has to continue moving around the pocket as much as he has been, his accuracy will continue to suffer. Better protection will mean better results in the passing game.

The Redskins were horrible on third down conversions on Sunday. They will need to improve on this aspect of the game against Detroit. It's important that they establish good habits on third down. The red zone offense was non-existent against Chicago. The Redskins need to not only get into the red zone, but they also need to score.

Washington had seven penalties last week, and that's still too many. They need to cut down on penalties or they will cost them the game.

For this game against a low-ranking Lions defense, I believe the Redskins can have success. I give the edge to the Redskins offense. What are your keys for the offense and who do you give the edge to?

By LaVar Arrington  | October 26, 2010; 2:00 PM ET
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Next: Redskins-Lions keys to victory: defense


I'm looking forward to this in depth research supported article on refs, players, and coaches fixing NFL games for Vegas.

Hoping to see it soon.

Posted by: rexforab | October 26, 2010 2:33 PM | Report abuse

LaVar, tonight is my first reading of your column. For some reason I *assumed* that your column would not provide the insight I was looking for, but would instead be a surface look. You have impressed me for years - from your play, to the greatest rant ever broadcast, to now doing a fine job with the column. Well done. Keep it up. p.s. I'd love to read one of your columns where you write what you think it might have been like playing back in the day with Mann, Manley, and some of the others. Wouldn't that have been fascinating? Okay, so I'm old....

Posted by: RugbyLawyer | October 26, 2010 11:48 PM | Report abuse

LaVar, I agree third down conversions will be key. Good runs on 1st and 2nd down will help keep us in 3rd and manageable.

I worry that teams will begin to approach us like they have the past several years-- put safety help on Moss's side of the field and bracket Cooley. I don't think Torrain has shown he can be effective enough out of the backfield, and I don't put Williams in the list of players I'd want to count on for a key 3rd down conversion. Neither Armstrong nor Galloway is someone who scares defenses.

I wish McNabb would get healthy, because I think a few boots would help the running game and provide a few opportunities to complete some passes to Cooley or Davis on the back side of the play. I also still would like to see Brandon Banks used more in the offense-- on bubble screens if they play us straight and on reverses when they start to cheat play side on the zone-stretch. What do you think?

Posted by: MB_202 | October 27, 2010 9:41 AM | Report abuse

North South Torrain plz!!!!

Posted by: robzombie | October 27, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

North South Torain plz!!!!

Posted by: robzombie | October 27, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

I am very impressed with Mr. Arrington's thinking, writing and repartee on the talk shows. He really helps us understand football and "team-building". This is not true of many of the local writers and commentators, perhaps because their most recent experience on the field dates to their pee-wee years.

Posted by: Towards_Light | October 27, 2010 1:56 PM | Report abuse

My main concern is that the redskins tend to play to the level of their opponent. The team has looked like it has a lot of potential for the whole season. It's midseason, and these guys need to gel. This is a very beatable team. If the skins play with their heads in the game, they will win.

Posted by: j762 | October 27, 2010 4:38 PM | Report abuse

I'm looking forward to this in depth research supported article on refs, players, and coaches fixing NFL games for Vegas.

Hoping to see it soon.

Posted by: rexforab | October 26, 2010 2:33 PM |

Heh! No kidding...that sure came out of the blue. He convinced me he really was serious but didn't throw out any specific thing that got him going. I am _really_ curious if he will a) even write anything more about it, and b) be able to back it up with ANYTHING resembling a fact(s).

That said, I do like Arrington's commentary - he keeps things interesting every week :)

Posted by: jiji1 | October 27, 2010 6:06 PM | Report abuse

Lavar, I love this section you have...good commentary.
you've given the broad overview of your topics... we want more dude! most people reading this stuff are junkies...can you give us more in depth stuff?.., like do you think it's true that we have backed off on the bootleg plays because McNabb's ham is sore?
what kind of run defense does detroit play? do they over pursue? will we have better success inside the tackles or out? it seems Torain likes the outside run plays with the option to cut it back. will this work on the Lions?

I think you are right about the run game, we will see a lot of it this sunday, as our O Line is doing better here than pass blocking. the passing game just has not jelled yet.

Part of the reason we are horrible on third down, is because McNabb thinks 3rd down is when he should go deep! throw the lowest percentage shot! on third down...I mean, really? sure we need to go deep some, but 3rd down when we need to sustain drives?

maybe in future posts, you can take some important plays and break them down... why it worked, and what the strategy was, from the coach's eye


Posted by: aintlifegrand | October 28, 2010 3:13 PM | Report abuse

The "I love Lavar commentary" is hilarious and obviously Lavar and his peeps are the ones posting it. Yes, he knows football, he was a good football player. But is he a great writer or even analyst???... negative. He acts like a big baby on some of these televised sports segments, pouting and acting ridiculous when people don't agree with him. Plus, have you read his Tweets??? They are incredibly negative and immature. He needs to grow up and offer a less-biased and arrogant view. His writing is ok. If he would stop with the attitude and arrogance, his analysis' would become more interesting to follow.

Posted by: foreverskins72 | October 28, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Penalties actually helped us last time, if there wasn't a delay of game and illegally knocking the ball forward out of bounds, the Skins would have possibly lost.

Posted by: ZJohnHTTR | October 28, 2010 4:30 PM | Report abuse

What does Broke Back Mountain and the NFL have in common ? They both have Cowboys that suck ! Hail !

Posted by: yesyall1 | October 29, 2010 8:35 AM | Report abuse

Arrington gives Penn State a bad name. Take his keyboard away - the man has no insight. He writes the obvious.

Is this some special diversity experiment at the WaPo? If so, bring it to a close and hire an analyst.

Posted by: g0tcha | October 29, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Brilliant analysis of all 3 facets of the game, LaVar. You really know your football.

Posted by: 1hasher | October 31, 2010 6:21 PM | Report abuse

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