Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
On Twitter: RedskinsInsider and PostSports  |  Facebook  |  E-mail alerts: Redskins and Sports  |  RSS

Redskins' new-look defense will be more complex under Haslett

Former defensive coordinator Greg Blache simplified much of the scheme he inherited from his predecessor, Gregg Williams.

The Redskins continued to run a base 4-3 attack and remained a top-10 unit statistically - fourth overall in 2008 and 10th last season - during Blache's two seasons. New defensive coordinator Jim Haslett plans to shake up things with a 3-4 scheme that will require more of players, people familiar with the Redskins' plans said last week during the NFL scouting combine at Indianapolis.

Although Washington is expected to utilize several fronts and maintain some 4-3 principles, Haslett will implement a primarily 3-4 scheme that will be much more complex than what players have experienced the past two seasons. Although the Redskins finished tied for eighth in the league with 40 sacks in the 2009 season, Coach Mike Shanahan and Haslett envision even greater success rushing the passer with their new defense, league sources said.

Some in the organization believe that with Albert Haynesworth at nose tackle and Brian Orakpo (11 sacks as a rookie) and Andre Carter (11 sacks in 2009) or possibly free agent Julius Peppers (10.5 sacks in '09) as outside linebackers in the 3-4 scheme, the Redskins' pass rush could be second to none in the league. And an improved pass rush is only part of the reason Shanahan and Haslett plan to make a major change on defense.

The Redskins tied for 26th in the league with only 11 interceptions last season. Shanahan and Haslett want more. Many more.

Some players could struggle working in a more complex scheme, but safety Reed Doughty figures to thrive under Haslett and new defensive backs coach Bob Slowik. Doughty, a restricted free agent, is among the smartest players on the roster, coaches and teammates say, and he's eager to try something new.

"It's actually exciting for me," Doughty said in a phone interview. "As much as I liked our defense the last two years, it was pretty basic. I'm sure it'll be a little bit more like when coach Williams was here my rookie year.

"Just more stuff, making more calls and maybe a little more complicated. But once you get in it, that complication can bring success. I think it'll be kind of fun for me and I think I'll have success doing it."

Doughty rebounded strong last season after his 2008 season was cut short because of back surgery. He supplanted Chris Horton as the starter at strong safety in the second half and finished third on the team with 75 solo tackles (91 overall). Doughty also had two sacks and an interception. With a salary of a little more than $542,000, Doughty was among the biggest bargains on the team. The Redskins are expected to tender Doughty.

"I do expect to be back," Doughty said. "Having the back surgery, obviously, it felt career-threatening and it ended up not being. Really, I think it ended up saving my career, just the way I felt and the way I played.

"I feel confident in what I can do and I just need to show that to the new coaches in the new stuff they have planned for us. Like I said, I'm really looking forward to the changes."

By Jason Reid  |  March 3, 2010; 7:28 AM ET
Categories:  Jason Reid , Jim Haslett  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Redskins explore their nose-tackle options in draft
Next: Redskins make low tender to Kedric Golston

Comments

Bring back Reed Doughty.

Posted by: RedDMV | March 3, 2010 7:57 AM | Report abuse

First.

This season will be interesting.

Posted by: ronnieb1212 | March 3, 2010 7:57 AM | Report abuse

FIRST to hope Haslett doesn't overthink the defense like Greggggg did here (see Disaster of '06)

Posted by: brownwood26 | March 3, 2010 7:57 AM | Report abuse

Doughty is great as a kind of fourth linebacker in Blache's defense. The thought of him covering in a cover one, two, three zone blitz doesn't exactly fill my heart with confidence in the defense. Doughty and Horton both will be challenged to fit into Haslett's defense where the safeties are going to be playing deep more often. One or both of them could be trade bait as the team tries to get more pure coverage guys in the secondary. I think trading Doughty to New Orleans where Greg Williams would be happy to have him is a very real option.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | March 3, 2010 8:02 AM | Report abuse

Check out this post on the Redskins switching to the 3-4
http://billythedistinguishedgentlemen.blogspot.com/

Posted by: b145579 | March 3, 2010 8:03 AM | Report abuse

Doesn't sound good for guys like LL who seem to struggle with even basic principles such as tackling, much less complex schemes.

Posted by: scampbell1975 | March 3, 2010 8:05 AM | Report abuse

Red, as thing as we are at DB, we may have no choice.

But I do like Doughty. Hopefully this defense suits him.

Posted by: brownwood26 | March 3, 2010 8:08 AM | Report abuse

Um, that should say "as THIN as we are at DB"...

Posted by: brownwood26 | March 3, 2010 8:10 AM | Report abuse

Doughty rebounded strong last season after his 2008 season was cut short because of back surgery. He supplanted Chris Horton as the starter at strong safety in the second half and finished third on the team with 75 solo tackles (91 overall).
--JReid

BULLSH!T....he started one game over Horton and then Horton took his job back...STOP ASS KISSING the season is over

Posted by: jcnjcnj | March 3, 2010 8:11 AM | Report abuse

The Redskins will have Okung and Ducasse after the first 2 rounds of the draft.
Major improvement to last year.

Posted by: SkinsFan37years | March 3, 2010 8:13 AM | Report abuse

Red, as thing as we are at DB, we may have no choice.

But I do like Doughty. Hopefully this defense suits him.

Posted by: brownwood26 | March 3, 2010 8:08 AM
------------------------------------------
Call me a Doughty-hater, but I think a lot of his prestige last year came at the expense of Landry. Doughty rarely was ten yards away from the line of scrimmage leaving Landry for sideline to sideline deep support.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | March 3, 2010 8:13 AM | Report abuse

I agree somewhat but we have to sign SOME FA's.I don't care how good the coaching staff is we can not win with what we have now and we don't have enough draft picks to make a significant difference. If you're going to get FA's you should get GOOD ones. Bodies to fill holes, no thanks, we have plenty. Good player evaluation is the key here.

Posted by: scampbell1975 | March 3, 2010 7:50 AM


Agreed, scamp...never said I didn't want us to sign ANY free agents, just don't want to go hog-wild on guys like Peppers, Dansby and Sproles like in years past. Getting mid-level guys who can help (and do so at a reasonable price) should be the focus.

Seems to me the easy way to do it would be to get guys who 1) fit the system and 2) would generate little or no jersey sales. I'm pretty sick of seeing this team market players who made names for themselves in other people's uniforms. We're way past the point where we need to develop our own stars.

Posted by: brownwood26 | March 3, 2010 8:16 AM | Report abuse

"The Redskins tied for 26th in the league with only 11 interceptions last season. Shanahan and Haslett want more. Many more."


If they want "many more" they need to take a long hard look at one of their "starting" CBs and understand why his nickname is "Drop-22".

Posted by: p1funk | March 3, 2010 8:17 AM | Report abuse

Call me a Doughty-hater, but I think a lot of his prestige last year came at the expense of Landry. Doughty rarely was ten yards away from the line of scrimmage leaving Landry for sideline to sideline deep support.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | March 3, 2010 8:13 AM | Report

That's because they both play the same position. Landry is supposed to be this great athlete. That is why they moved him to FS because he is supposed to be able to play sideline to sideline. Doughty's success came because he's a smart player. LL's failure is because he is out of position, is undisciplined, and is uncoachable.

Posted by: scampbell1975 | March 3, 2010 8:18 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: RedSkinHead | March 3, 2010 8:02 AM | Report abuse

?
Why is this bad news for only Doughty and Horton?

Both of those guys are more reliable in deep coverage than LL30.

Posted by: p1funk | March 3, 2010 8:18 AM | Report abuse

FIRST to hope Haslett doesn't overthink the defense like Greggggg did here (see Disaster of '06)

Posted by: brownwood26 | March 3, 2010 7:57 AM | Report abuse

You may be right, but several analysts blamed the 06 collapse of the Redskin's defense on Al Saunder's new offense. There were too many 3 and outs that only took about 2 minutes off the clock. That defense was exhausted and the offense never took enough time on drives to give the defense a rest.

Posted by: RedskinJim1 | March 3, 2010 8:20 AM | Report abuse

Doughty would be good in a 4-6 defense.

The SS from the Jets, Leonhard, isn't known for his coverage skills, but he was getting it done last year for the Jets.

Doughty = Leonhard

If they're truly going to go hybrid on defense then I expect them to incorporate the 4-6 in their defense as well.

The key to getting takeaways is to give the opposing offense different looks -- creating confusion is the best method for a defense.

Posted by: RedDMV | March 3, 2010 8:24 AM | Report abuse

FIRST to hope Haslett doesn't overthink the defense like Greggggg did here (see Disaster of '06)

Posted by: brownwood26 | March 3, 2010 7:57 AM | Report abuse


The '06 Disaster came down to 2 simple things:

1) Adam Archuleta's incompetence in pass coverage.

2) They were asking Sean Taylor to defend the deep ball AND be responsible for coming up to play the run.

This left the team vulnerable to deep play-action passes down the middle and the Skins got gashed for big plays all season long.

The issues were easliy corrected: Arch got benched and they made ST21 responsible only for playing deep center.

The defense rebounded and tunred things around real quickly as a result.

Posted by: p1funk | March 3, 2010 8:25 AM | Report abuse

That defense was exhausted and the offense never took enough time on drives to give the defense a rest.

Posted by: RedskinJim1 | March 3, 2010 8:20 AM


I don't necessarily wanna spend time debating this, but that seems like a cheap excuse...you don't go from a top 5 defense to 31st just because the offense goes 3-and-out. From what I read, some of that was to blame but a lot of it fell on Gregggg's shoulders because he felt like his scheme would trump the loss of key defenders like AP and Ryan Clark. When a coach has so much ego that he feels like he can jam players into his scheme instead of building the defense around the players, that's a problem.

And that's all I meant by that remark...that I hope Haslett isn't making this thing more complicated than it needs to be just to show how smart he is.

Posted by: brownwood26 | March 3, 2010 8:30 AM | Report abuse

The key to getting takeaways is to give the opposing offense different looks -- creating confusion is the best method for a defense.

Posted by: RedDMV | March 3, 2010 8:24 AM | Report abuse


Right on. The Steelers, Ravens and Jets thrive off of throwing different looks and formations at offenses and putting the pressure back on them. It would be great to have the Skins D be in the conversation with those other teams.

Posted by: p1funk | March 3, 2010 8:31 AM | Report abuse

Why is this bad news for only Doughty and Horton?

Both of those guys are more reliable in deep coverage than LL30.

Posted by: p1funk


If Laron didn't bite on double moves like he does, he'd be good in coverage.

Neither Doughty or Horton have backpedaling speed to be considered reliable in coverage. I've seen them both get baked in coverage by the opposing receiver simply running past them. Laron's only problem in coverage is that he falls for the double move too often. Horton and Doughty, like Laron, will excel playing at the line of scrimmage.

Besides, we don't know what they were asking Laron to do last year. Several teammates have said that the dude was confused and thinking too much. That's from Blache wanting him to be like Sean Taylor and he isn't.

Posted by: RedDMV | March 3, 2010 8:32 AM | Report abuse

The defense rebounded and tunred things around real quickly as a result.

Posted by: p1funk | March 3, 2010 8:25 AM


Really? Cuz I sure seem to remember Tiki Barber making a big push for the HoF on us the last game of that season...

Posted by: brownwood26 | March 3, 2010 8:33 AM | Report abuse

Reed Doughty should fit in just fine in this new D . The man was all over the field last year , waiting for them to bring out his jersey !,. In my opinion, let Smoot walk,he gets burnt down field and has a hard time catching the ball !

Posted by: killerskunk63 | March 3, 2010 8:36 AM | Report abuse

The defense rebounded and tunred things around real quickly as a result.

Posted by: p1funk | March 3, 2010 8:25 AM


Really? Cuz I sure seem to remember Tiki Barber making a big push for the HoF on us the last game of that season...

Posted by: brownwood26 | March 3, 2010 8:33 AM | Report abuse


By rebound, I meant from '06 to '07.

They went from 31st in 2006 to 8th in 2007. That's a pretty significant turn around in one offseason.

Posted by: p1funk | March 3, 2010 8:38 AM | Report abuse

Gotcha p1funk, I misread that.

Posted by: brownwood26 | March 3, 2010 8:42 AM | Report abuse

If Laron didn't bite on double moves like he does, he'd be good in coverage.

Posted by: RedDMV | March 3, 2010 8:32 AM | Report abuse

*Sigh*

Red, I don't want to get into an LL fight with you today, but the dude is just not good in coverage.

I still recall the Raiders game when they were splitting out Darren McFadden as a WR and he was toasting LL30 - it wasn't double moves, it was LL30 being incapable of covering a running back.

Posted by: p1funk | March 3, 2010 8:44 AM | Report abuse

Do we have any shot of drafting Javid Best from Cal? He burned his 40 at the combine and can catch out of the backfield. I assume he's a first rounder, and given our need/interest for OT and QB, probably not going to happen unless we trade down.

Posted by: quinn3 | March 3, 2010 8:48 AM | Report abuse

What worries me is that our current secondary was confused in Blache's 'simple' scheme... how are they going to fare in a markedly more complicated one? Are we facing full re-build there, too? I guess we'll see.

Posted by: DikShuttle | March 3, 2010 8:49 AM | Report abuse

No ones' fighting.


Just saying that Landry ain't that bad like many people here make him out to be.

I'm just not in the one bad season = cut him crowd. All I'm saying is, let's see how Landry performs when they aren't trying to make him into Sean Taylor.

Posted by: RedDMV | March 3, 2010 8:53 AM | Report abuse

can anyone tell me where the synder jet will land at 12.01 friday march 5 2010 ?

Posted by: robertg238 | March 3, 2010 8:56 AM | Report abuse

can anyone tell me where the synder jet will land at 12.01 friday march 5 2010 ?

Posted by: robertg238 | March 3, 2010 8:56 AM | Report abuse

can anyone tell me where the synder jet will land at 12.01 friday march 5 2010 ?

Posted by: robertg238 | March 3, 2010 8:56 AM | Report abuse

I'm just not in the one bad season = cut him crowd. All I'm saying is, let's see how Landry performs when they aren't trying to make him into Sean Taylor.

Posted by: RedDMV | March 3, 2010 8:53 AM | Report abuse


Bingo.

Posted by: Original_etrod | March 3, 2010 8:57 AM | Report abuse

I suppose it was inevitable that the SHANAHAN era would include "proven" now over-the-hill players from the BRONCOS glory days. God, I hope we don't become DENVER EAST under this guy. Let's start a new identity please and leave history where it belongs......in the past.

Posted by: glawrence007 | March 3, 2010 7:37 AM | Report abuse

"No,no boo. Let's sign 'um up." A synopsis on this take from youse guys here.

Sorry guys I'm not buying it. I'd rather start fresh all 'round, but I know it won't happen. What concerns me most is that SHANAHAN will think several of these former BRONCOS can still bring it when they can't.

CASEY WEIGMANN can replace WIL MONTGOMERY however, any day of the week. I'll buy that one. He was the weakest link in the spagetti necklace that was last years REDSKIN o-line. Let's see what it costs before signing him to a five year contract however.

Posted by: glawrence007 | March 3, 2010 8:58 AM | Report abuse

Maybe in Carolina new orleans or san diego

Posted by: robertg238 | March 3, 2010 8:58 AM | Report abuse

p1, that Raider game you're talking about, was Landry in zone or playing man?

I ask because if he was zoning then, it goes back to what I was saying that they had him doing too much. If he was manned, well then it's no viable excuse that I could give for why he was toasted by McFadden.

Dude probably was an insane amount of reads pre-snap and after. That's stuff a QB does, and Landry obviously ain't no QB.

But that was McFadden and not necessarily Le'Ron McClain he was trying to run with.

Posted by: RedDMV | March 3, 2010 9:00 AM | Report abuse

Espn is reporting, the skins are hard at work for Sproels and Dansby

Posted by: SkinsFan37years | March 3, 2010 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Bring back REED DOUGHTY.

Posted by: glawrence007 | March 3, 2010 9:03 AM | Report abuse

Call me a Doughty-hater, but I think a lot of his prestige last year came at the expense of Landry. Doughty rarely was ten yards away from the line of scrimmage leaving Landry for sideline to sideline deep support.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | March 3, 2010 8:13 AM | Report abuse

Was that on DOUGHTY for free-lancing, or was that what he was told to play?

Posted by: glawrence007 | March 3, 2010 9:06 AM | Report abuse

CASEY WEIGMANN can replace WIL MONTGOMERY however, any day of the week. I'll buy that one. He was the weakest link in the spagetti necklace that was last years REDSKIN o-line. Let's see what it costs before signing him to a five year contract however.

Posted by: glawrence007 | March 3, 2010 8:58 AM


C'mon GL...you're better than this.

Nobody's gonna sign a 38 year-old center to a 5 year deal. Even Brett f-ing Favre didn't get that kinda deal from Minnesota.

You sign him to a one year deal for the vet's minimum. Any other guy with a Denver connection likely won't yield much more than that anyway, so I don't get why you're all riled up about this.

Posted by: brownwood26 | March 3, 2010 9:07 AM | Report abuse

Forget SPROLES.

DANSBY, DANSBY, DANSBY, Yee-Haw good buddy.

Posted by: glawrence007 | March 3, 2010 9:07 AM | Report abuse

Do we have any shot of drafting Javid Best from Cal? He burned his 40 at the combine and can catch out of the backfield. I assume he's a first rounder, and given our need/interest for OT and QB, probably not going to happen unless we trade down.

Posted by: quinn3 | March 3, 2010 8:48 AM | Report abuse

We sure do. C.J. Spiller is the top rated back. Ryan Matthews is also rated pretty high. Jahvid had a concussion so that may scare someone off. I've seen mock drafts that have us taking Best in the second. With the amount of talent in the draft and the teams ahead of us with running back issues I'd say we have a pretty good shot at landing him in the second.

Posted by: PAskinsfan17 | March 3, 2010 9:09 AM | Report abuse

C'mon GL...you're better than this.

Nobody's gonna sign a 38 year-old center to a 5 year deal. Even Brett f-ing Favre didn't get that kinda deal from Minnesota.

LOL, just LOL. Gotcha' 'wood. That was just for you buddy. Thanks for the prop too. My man......

Posted by: glawrence007 | March 3, 2010 9:10 AM | Report abuse

What worries me is that our current secondary was confused in Blache's 'simple' scheme... how are they going to fare in a markedly more complicated one? Are we facing full re-build there, too? I guess we'll see.

Posted by: DikShuttle


I think it varied from player to player.

Take Landry and Doughty. Doughty's assignment in most situations was to probably play the line of scrimmage. Landry had to defend deep passes, sideline, middle of the field.... the beer man.

And this probably changed according to what personnel the offense had in. I'm assuming Landry was asked to make too many judgement calls which doesn't suit him very well. They need to "Doughty" Landry -- Just play him on the LOS.

Posted by: RedDMV | March 3, 2010 9:10 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: jeffco01 | March 2, 2010 3:58 PM | Report abuse

I will say it again for a variety of reasons, stay away from ISO-JOE JOHNSON. We just got rid of that type of personnel, or at least, most of them.

Posted by: glawrence007 | March 2, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: glawrence007 | March 3, 2010 9:12 AM | Report abuse

Beep beep.

Posted by: skinfanman | March 3, 2010 9:13 AM | Report abuse

And this probably changed according to what personnel the offense had in. I'm assuming Landry was asked to make too many judgement calls which doesn't suit him very well. They need to "Doughty" Landry -- Just play him on the LOS.

Posted by: RedDMV | March 3, 2010 9:10 AM | Report abuse

He was the perfect compliment to ST21.

Posted by: glawrence007 | March 3, 2010 9:14 AM | Report abuse

p1, that Raider game you're talking about, was Landry in zone or playing man?


Posted by: RedDMV | March 3, 2010 9:00 AM | Report abuse


It was man.

The Raiders were lining up with McFadden in the backfield, and then he was going in motion and splitting out wide, and it was (apparently) Landry's assignment to go out there and cover him.

I know we are not talking about covering LeRon McClain, but we are also not tlaking about covering Larry Fitzgerald.

Look, I think it was DUMB for the coaches to continue to use LL as a free safety. They did not put him in a position to really succeed and max-out his talent and that is the coaches role and coaches fault.

Even so, Landry is simply deficient in coverage (I'm not even bringing up the tackling fundamentals), and my fear is that he's going to get exposed at this point in his career and it will be like Roy Williams 2.0.

Once a guy is in the league for a couple of years, the league learns about him. They develop enough game film and game situations to understand what he can and cannot do. LL30 has had a relatively successful early career - he's real talented and made some big plays. But last year was a regression and teams seem to have him "scouted".

It was the same deal with Roy Williams. He was the toast of the league, going to Pro Bowls and everyone feared his big hits. After a few seasons folks realized "he can't cover". He lost his starting job and eventually got cut.

If LL30 does not develop his all-around game as a defender in coverage I see the same thing happening...

Posted by: p1funk | March 3, 2010 9:17 AM | Report abuse

We sure do. C.J. Spiller is the top rated back. Ryan Matthews is also rated pretty high. Jahvid had a concussion so that may scare someone off. I've seen mock drafts that have us taking Best in the second. With the amount of talent in the draft and the teams ahead of us with running back issues I'd say we have a pretty good shot at landing him in the second.

Posted by: PAskinsfan17 | March 3, 2010 9:09 AM | Report abuse

That would be great. I would prefer Best to Sproles or Chester Taylor any day.

Posted by: quinn3 | March 3, 2010 9:19 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: RedSkinHead | March 3, 2010 8:02 AM | Report abuse

?
Why is this bad news for only Doughty and Horton?

Both of those guys are more reliable in deep coverage than LL30.

Posted by: p1funk | March 3, 2010 8:18 AM
-----------------------------------------
Landry was given deep support sideline to sideline which the team would have never asked of Horton and Doughty because of their limited coverage skills. He's a great athlete who can cover ground quickly, but Blache just asked too much of him. The year prior Landry did a good job, which many people seem to forget. This is the same guy the Redskins drafted, only he was put in a position he couldn't manage. I think some of the players have basically said the same thing. My feeling is Landry will be playing strong safety and a player yet to be named will be the free safety. Doughty and Horton can't play free safety. They'd suck more at it than Landry. I still remember Doughty's pass interference call two seasons ago when he got beat deep in Dallas. I remember Horton's last year in Detroit. Last year they tried to minimize getting these guys locked in man to man on anyone with deep speed, and kept them close to the line of scrimmage where they could use them more as extra linebackers. Landry is a unique athlete. Horton and Doughty are not.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | March 3, 2010 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Landry is a unique athlete. Horton and Doughty are not.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | March 3, 2010 9:21 AM

I believe Horton was almost the last guy picked in the draft, there is a reason for that, and Dought was I believe undrafted. Both should not be starting and should only provide depth. LL future in this league is as a SS. He played FS out of neccesity. We need to find a true FS in the in FA maybe sharper or clark (bandaid)for cheap. I've not heard alot about Moore. Is he developeing? This yr we need other positions filled first before FS can be addressed.

Posted by: sthai75 | March 3, 2010 9:32 AM | Report abuse

I wouldn't be too quick to dismiss what Blache did entirely. He simplified things in favor of execution and while there weren't a ton of turnovers the defense still kept us in games.

Posted by: BrooklynSkins | March 3, 2010 9:36 AM | Report abuse

I'm trying to stay positive with these defensive changes, but I have these visions of Alexander and Carter trying to cover TE's and RB's and, well... Campbell and the offense better be ready to put some points on the board this year.

Posted by: coparker5 | March 3, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company