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Position Battle: Strong Safety

There should be no position battle here. LaRon Landry should be playing strong safety. Period. It makes the most sense, given his skills, and it's the position he was drafted to play. (Virtually all of his incentives are based on tackles, tackles for loss, etc; things that occur around the line of scrimmage, not 40 yards downfield). Having Landry at this position would put a young playmaker into a defense long starved for big plays.

But then you know I've been banging this drum since last offseason. Perhaps Kareem Moore will show enough to rate a good, long look at free safety -- enough to get Landry back to being a running back-seeking missile and blitzing threat -- but that seems to be a long shot at this point. So Reed Doughty and Chris Horton are likely to slug it out for the right to start alongside Landry, with Landry often the single high safety (players who have chatted with coordinator Greg Blache are convinced that much of this system will remain intact, with Albert Haynesworth being given some room to freelance and do his thing, but everything else pretty much status quo).

Horton deservedly drew lots of accolades for his surprising rookie season, but he remains very raw. He slowed in the latter stages of the season and, when isolated in coverage, got into trouble. He had some issues playing Cover-2 and, when you talk to players and scouts, he seems ideally suited as a third safety in a Cobra package. Over the course of an entire game, his lack of speed and youth can show up at critical moments.

The guy hits like a monster and has an incredible nose for the football. He fits the system perfectly as a run stopper, but using him situationally might make the most sense. Doughty lacks some of Horton's size, but he is a natural hitter, too, and, like Horton, suffers most when forced to backtrack downfield. He is very smart and comfortable in this system, but it must be remembered that he is also coming off major back surgery.

Mike Green added experience and stability last year and I think this young group of safeties is calling out for the same again now. If you made me pick between Doughty and Horton at this point, I'm not sure I could; I think you need to find ways to get snaps out of both of them. Players are likely to be rotated at this spot this season (much like Kedric Golston and Anthony Montgomery, pre-Albert Haynesworth).

By Jason La Canfora  |  March 31, 2009; 9:28 AM ET
Categories:  Redskins by Position  
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Comments

anti-Jason comment.

Posted by: Original_etrod | March 31, 2009 9:39 AM | Report abuse

I thought Moore did OK towards the end of the season.

Posted by: Original_etrod | March 31, 2009 9:40 AM | Report abuse

Let's go Kareem Moore, take that FS position over.

Posted by: Yoder-lay-hee-who | March 31, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

Moore was getting more comfortable on the field towards the end of last season. Horton seemed to benefit from being in a similar system at UCLA, so he got down the mental part a little quicker than Moore. Kareem is the better athlete though, so with a year of seasoning, he should get even more playing time.

Posted by: Yoder-lay-hee-who | March 31, 2009 9:44 AM | Report abuse

Basically what JLaC is trying to say is:

ST21 was a BEAST. The Skins miss him off AND on the field. No team recovers that fast trying to replace one of the best talents in the league who the team thought would have been set for the next decade. Until then, DirtyThirty will have to sacrifice......

Posted by: 4thFloor | March 31, 2009 9:46 AM | Report abuse

JLC,

I will go with Blache's knowledge over yours, if he thinks Horton can play there full time then that is good enough for me.

I do agree that Landry is the best fit a SS, it would be nice to be able to play him there.

I thought Horton played great sure he had a few breakdowns but all rookies do, he will be much better this year.

I love the go young you keep preaching, but then you say that they are not good enough to play. Lets see how he does this year before we say he is a third Safety.

With a better pass rush, we would not have to play Landry so far back that he might as well be sitting in the stands.

Posted by: Flounder21 | March 31, 2009 9:48 AM | Report abuse

I was impressed with Kareem Moore in the limited time he got last year, but definately not enough to think he can replace Landry as the FS. Horton showed much more than Moore did last year.

Until the Skins take a top FS in one of the early rounds of the draft (which I hope isnt' until at least next year), I think it makes sense to keep Landry at FS with Moore to back him up.

I still don't understand why JLC has been so down on Horton but so high on Moore. Moore met expectations as a late round draft pick by contributing on special teams and performing well in spot duty at FS. Horton exceeded expectations as a late round pick by starting most games and coming up with several turnovers/big plays.

Posted by: HokiePaul | March 31, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

Hopefully Moore will be able to take over the FS job at some point this year, then Landry can go back to crushing people near the line.

Either way all these guys will get lots of playing time this year.

Posted by: Flounder21 | March 31, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

"Until the Skins take a top FS in one of the early rounds of the draft (which I hope isnt' until at least next year)"

Next year has 2 of the best safeties that have come out in years :

Eric Berry from Tennessee

Taylor Mays from USC


Next years 1st round is going to be insane, it would be nice to make some moves to get 2 picks.

Posted by: Yoder-lay-hee-who | March 31, 2009 9:56 AM | Report abuse

I love Landry, let's get that out of the way first. I have his jersey and wear it proud. However, "crushing people near the line"? Really? Ask Brandon Jacobs how he felt when he got 'crushed' by Landry. #30 should stay at FS where he can play like ST21 and roam around with his speed and scare the crap out of WR's coming over the middle with his hits. Keep Horton at SS, throw in Moore or Reed in situations and hopefully they all can get more picks with Prince Albert putting pressure on the QB.

Posted by: sidkid31 | March 31, 2009 10:01 AM | Report abuse

One thing's for sure, this is not a position of concern. Whether it's Horton or Landry, this position is covered.

And Horton is definitely above Doughty at this point. Horton was an absolute monster in the run game last season, consistently either blowing plays up himself or blowing up blockers allowing for others to stuff the play.

And Rocky Mac's INT vs Dallas was sparked by a Horton blitz. Horton put the heat on Romo, forced him to rid the ball quickly to TO, Rogers read the quick pass and drilled TO as the ball arrived, the ball popped up in the air and RMac came down with it.

Horton's a stud. In a 3 player rotation of Landry, Horton, and Moore, the safety spot is looking very strong.

Posted by: psps23 | March 31, 2009 10:03 AM | Report abuse

"I will go with Blache's knowledge over yours, if he thinks Horton can play there full time then that is good enough for me."

Blache doesn't....that is why they were throwing out Moore more at the end of the season as well as running out Springs at safety in the 3 CB 1 Safety set. It was obvious that Blache didn't feel comfortable with him out there all the time.

Man the panties bunch crown just can't get out of there own way sometimes...this post is dead on, and saying that Horton is best when his skills are utlized to the fullest isn't an insult. Horton is a lot like LaRon and they both should be playing strong safety. Plus the system does lots of different looks with DBs...so "starting" is not really super relevant......

Do people check in with this blog just to get their rage on? Does it stop you from beating your dog? Really its so tiring.....sports are about fun arguements...its not all some grand insult....

Posted by: chrislarry | March 31, 2009 10:03 AM | Report abuse

For all of you Madden haters, Raheem Morris learned to be a HC and got the job at age 32 because of Madden......

http://blogs.denverpost.com/broncos/2009/03/30/an-interesting-theory-on-young-nfl-head-coaches/

Posted by: 4thFloor | March 31, 2009 10:03 AM | Report abuse

And if the team drafts a safety high at any point in the next 5 years, somebody will need to slap Vinny.

Posted by: psps23 | March 31, 2009 10:05 AM | Report abuse

flounder: "I thought Horton played great sure he had a few breakdowns but all rookies do, he will be much better this year."

I'm wondering if he will. I thought he played very well at the start and got some very nice INTs. But it also looked like he was anything but a natural in pass coverage, and outside of the ball-hawking, was at a disadvantage against faster receivers.

Hope I'm wrong. But overall I thought he might slide back a little this year, and pairing with Doughty, who performed so well in relief of Taylor the year before, might save two careers.

Posted by: Samson151 | March 31, 2009 10:07 AM | Report abuse

I love Landry, let's get that out of the way first. I have his jersey and wear it proud. However, "crushing people near the line"? Really? Ask Brandon Jacobs how he felt when he got 'crushed' by Landry. #30 should stay at FS where he can play like ST21 and roam around with his speed and scare the crap out of WR's coming over the middle with his hits. Keep Horton at SS, throw in Moore or Reed in situations and hopefully they all can get more picks with Prince Albert putting pressure on the QB.

Posted by: sidkid31 | March 31, 2009 10:01 AM |

First of all that was not near the line, Jacobs had a 20 yard full head of steam. Landry when in to high but any safety in the league would have had the same issue. Atleast he was man enough to give it a try, most guys would have tried to jump on his back. Landry is a much better SS then FS.

Posted by: Flounder21 | March 31, 2009 10:10 AM | Report abuse

Earlier somebody posted on this blog some pre draft QB ratings. Here is a little lab experiment that casts a lot of doubt on their credence. 2004 draft: 3 1st round QBs chosen (Man, Roeth, Riv), all 3 scored a "likely to succeed" rating, all 3 actually successful. Repeat lab experiment under prexactly the same conditions one year later in 2005 draft: 3 1st round QBs chosen (Smith, Rod, Camp), all 3 scored "likely to succeed" rating, all 3 actually busts to near busts. While obviously the 3 2004 1st rounders were spot on selections, all 3 of the 2005 draft 1st rounders should have been 3rd round or lower selections. But of course we all new even before seeing those numbers that NFL drafting ain't no science. If drafting were a science, then the lab experiment thingy should come out the same every time, not the prexact opposite.

Posted by: AntonChigurh | March 31, 2009 10:12 AM | Report abuse

CL,

JLC is consistent in putting down the team, and he has no true knowledge of the game.

So like I said I will let Blache make that choice.

Stop doing Corks job, hows the baby by the way getting big I'll bet.

Posted by: Flounder21 | March 31, 2009 10:16 AM | Report abuse

Comparing horton and doughty is laughable. Reed is a nice guy but not close to cracking the 30/48/41 rotation. I thought a lot of the defenses problems late in the season were because horton was out. We couldn't get off the field with teams running on us. Meanwhile wally pipp, i mean doughty, has never been a factor.

Posted by: AdamCr | March 31, 2009 10:21 AM | Report abuse

Raise your hand if you have created more than 3 formation sets in Madden. Congratulations you are now capable of being a NFL head coach.

For the record I indeed have created 3 sets, the best of which was my 3-TE 2-WR formation, shotgun/Ace set.

Posted by: alex35332 | March 31, 2009 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Doughty was definitely a factor in the team's run during the post-ST stretch in '07. It's tough to attribute how much of his drop-off was a result of his debilitating back injury. All things considered, he'll probably be the 4th or 5th safety while helping to improve our woeful special teams last season.

Posted by: psps23 | March 31, 2009 10:27 AM | Report abuse

Ask Brandon Jacobs how he felt when he got 'crushed' by Landry...

Posted by: sidkid31 | March 31, 2009 10:01 AM

I wish people would stop pointing to this...you have a mutant RB who weighs in at 265 pounds vs. a 215 pound safety. This isn't like MoJo getting Shawne Merriman with the hit stick. Just simply physics. And football is about leverage. And more than anything Landry took a bad angle and didn't have his feet set on that play. If he got trucked outright I'd call it that...it wasn't.

As for the safety spot: anyone who thinks this team should spend ANOTHER high pick on a safety is an idiot. The Skins have taken 2 safeties in the top 10 twice in a 4 year span and took 2 in last year's draft. I don't think there's another team in the NFL that gives this much TLC to the safety spot when the D-line is SCREAMING for upgrades. Handle business at the line of scrimmage and worry about the safety spot later.

Posted by: brownwood26 | March 31, 2009 10:28 AM | Report abuse

For the record, I've never played madded nfl whatever, and I've never created a 'set' the likes of which you describe....

Posted by: BeantownGreg | March 31, 2009 10:29 AM | Report abuse

I have never played madded NFL either.

Posted by: alex35332 | March 31, 2009 10:30 AM | Report abuse

Jason La Canfora quote: " If you made me pick between Doughty and Horton at this point, I'm not sure I could;"

What?? As if your post wasn't off base, that line pushed it full bore into the realm of little credibility.

Is Horton better than Landry at SS. No. But is Horton a toss-up with Doughty?? You have to be joking.

Jay Lac, Please focus on getting "Insider" info, and less on talent evaluation. Put simply, don't quit your day job.

Posted by: MadeRED | March 31, 2009 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Doughty was getting cooked in pass d last year before the back. He's a good teams guy, nothing wrong with that. Horton was among the best rookie safeties in the league. Let's hope kareem can play some free though but keep 37 off the field. I think blache comment that he'd rather fall in love with a stripper than a rookie, then replacing reed with horton, says a lot.

Posted by: AdamCr | March 31, 2009 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: alex35332 | March 31, 2009 10:37 AM | Report abuse

More I read these post the more I got to laugh. I guess we have a team of awful players that are lucky to be playing in the NFL and couldn't play for any other team but ours.

JM220

Posted by: icetotalpackage | March 31, 2009 10:38 AM | Report abuse

al, while I'm intrigued by Loadholt, I'm 100 percent certain that he should not be picked that early. He'll go late 1, early 2, but not at 13.....

Posted by: BeantownGreg | March 31, 2009 10:42 AM | Report abuse

I stopped reading the examiner mock draft once it got to #4 and had Oher up there.

Mock drafts are too much a waste....

Posted by: 4thFloor | March 31, 2009 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Greg
I am just reporting what the reporters are saying.

Posted by: alex35332 | March 31, 2009 10:49 AM | Report abuse

antonchig: "Camp), all 3 scored "likely to succeed" rating, all 3 actually busts to near busts. While obviously the 3 2004 1st rounders were spot on selections, all 3 of the 2005 draft 1st rounders should have been 3rd round or lower selections. But of course we all new even before seeing those numbers that NFL drafting ain't no science. If drafting were a science, then the lab experiment thingy should come out the same every time, not the prexact opposite."

What's 'prexact'?

Although I think you're right in saying the draft is far from a science, and teams often overvalue a current class based on the previous year's outcome, the rest of it baffles me.

The stats suggest that Campbell is in fact a midlevel NFL QB. Last year, his numbers were very comparable to Kerry Collins and several other playoff QBs. So how does he qualify as a 'bust', except maybe in the eyes of a disappointed fan?

To call something a 'science', you have to be able to apply the scientific method to it, right? You come up with a hypothesis, design an experiment, analyze and replicate results. I think that's what the NFL tries to do, through its combines, etc., with indifferent success. Most of the variables are simply outside anybody's control. You get a lot of stuff like you see on this board, weights and measures and 40 yard double-stop-shuttle-jumps with mustard, and ultimately, you still end up with an educated guess.

Just as the success of the 04 class didn't predict success in 05, we can't reliably predict failure in 08. Stafford, Sanchez, and Freeman may turn out quite well. But no matter how they do, it doesn't help us predict next year's crop.

Posted by: Samson151 | March 31, 2009 10:51 AM | Report abuse

al, 10-4, I gotcha, but I just think thats WAY, WAY too early for big phil. I like him, and think he's a talented player, and my dream scenario is trading back into the late 20's and picking him up, but 13 would be a serious reach for him.

Posted by: BeantownGreg | March 31, 2009 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Doughty played surprisingly well when asked to play for Landry who was asked to play for ST21. Extra credit for both players!

I do feel a little more comfortable watching Horton sacrifice his body rather than Landry, who is a great talent.

Moore had the best hit of the year on Coolcho Coolco.

It would be nice if Doughty can be healthy and win the SS position battle. With Landry and Doughty starting we're DEEP.

Even better if Horton or Moore can prove to be stars.

Posted by: pabrian2003 | March 31, 2009 10:55 AM | Report abuse

They do need a center. And a backup who can play the other positions as well would be extremely valuable. If (Jansen) could stay reasonably healthy it could extend his career indefinitely. However, his problems with mobility in pass protection limit his ability to play guard and tackle.

Posted by: periculum

Jansen’s never played guard or center in the pros, tho there was some experimentation as a backup center last camp. The key question is whether or not another year of recovery has restored a significant degree of mobility, or have age and injuries permanently damaged him. Amazingly, that can’t be determined by opinions on a board, no matter how positively stated.

Needs to be determined going into the draft, tho.

Posted by: TheCork | March 31, 2009 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Dear Washington Post,

It is not even April, so no job is secure 100% for the upcoming season.

Every spot in the lineup, even Cooley's, Haynesworth, Landry, etc...are all up for competition.

Let the best man win. And in the above three cases I am assuming they will, but whomever the coaching staff decides is the best to play those position, or any position, is yet to be 100% decided FIVE MONTHS before opening day. The draft hasn't even occurred yet.

Wake up.

Posted by: BrokenClipboard | March 31, 2009 11:07 AM | Report abuse

I don't care much on JLC either way, but it is amusing to see him say, "If I had to pick...", the guy drops in a LOT of I would do this, I would do that. His best stuff comes when it starts with "An anonymous NFL executive or scout said..." Leave it to a professional evaluator. you went to school to report what they say, not replace it.

Posted by: showell81 | March 31, 2009 11:07 AM | Report abuse

Position Battle: Strong Safety
There should be no position battle here. LaRon Landry should be playing strong safety. Period. It makes the most sense, given his skills, and it's the position he was drafted to play. (Virtually all of his incentives are based on tackles, tackles for loss, etc; things that occur around the line of scrimmage, not 40 yards downfield). Having Landry at this position would put a young playmaker into a defense long starved for big plays.--JLaC

We get it. You're stirring up the troops. But what in the high holy Hades maks you think you know better than Blache regarding the Redskins defense? That rag tag band of oft injured defenders DID finish fourth last year in the NFL with Landry at free safety.

I don't know how many TD's Landry's ability to fly to pick up a receiver' who has gotten past a skins CB has prevented, but I'll bet the coaching staff has a good idea. And if Hortn ahs shortcomings--as is often the case with low round picks--so too likely does Kareem Moore.

Posted by: TheCork | March 31, 2009 11:08 AM | Report abuse

And if the team drafts a safety high at any point in the next 5 years, somebody will need to slap Vinny.

Posted by: psps23

On the other hand, it appears to be the only position he knows how to draft. He was two for two drafting safeties last year, Oh for three at receiver, and oh for one at CB, OL, and Punter.

Posted by: TheCork | March 31, 2009 11:10 AM | Report abuse

More I read these post the more I got to laugh. I guess we have a team of awful players that are lucky to be playing in the NFL and couldn't play for any other team but ours.

JM220

I couldn't agree with you more, and I didn't even read your post. 510 squat, huh?

Posted by: TheCork | March 31, 2009 11:11 AM | Report abuse

Off the record, I'm a fan of the kinder, less caustic cork thats been around the past few days......

Posted by: BeantownGreg | March 31, 2009 11:12 AM | Report abuse

" If you made me pick between Doughty and Horton at this point, I'm not sure I could; I think you need to find ways to get snaps out of both of them. "

talk about one of the EASIEST position battles on the team

the young, quicker, harder hitting bigger impact player or the slower, older, softer hitting player?

derrrr


methinks Reed is one of those "unnamed sources" we hear about if this is even a question

Posted by: TheTruth11 | March 31, 2009 11:16 AM | Report abuse

I'm not. I have actually read his comments over the last few.

I'm am so program too just scroll and do noot attempt to read more than 3 words.......

Posted by: 4thFloor | March 31, 2009 11:19 AM | Report abuse

I think Moore is suited for free safety, Landry at free safety and Horton as the third safety. I believe Doughty is not a gifted athlete and could be pushed out of it altogether. Every highlight film I can remember of Doughty was him running after someone who beat him deep or that terrible pass interference play two years ago. The guy is not a player who rises well to challenges, he's not that gifted an athlete, and he's coming off of an injury. He was Williamson's pet project and surely if the Redskins cut him, he would be picked up by New Orleans where Williamson is now the defensive coordinator. I doubt he is worth any trade value but perhaps Williamson could talk the team into giving up a late round pick for Doughty. If Vinny was smart, he'd start shopping the guy now.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | March 31, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

Off the record, I'm a fan of the kinder, less caustic cork thats been around the past few days......

Posted by: BeantownGreg

Shutup fathead.

Actually, you and I could probably enjoy a beer together. Frickin' Internet is like Road Rage. I find myself writing stuff here I would never say in person. I think most of us do. Doesn't mean I don't regret it.

Gonna work on it tho. Winnin season would drive alot of the anger away, methinks.

Posted by: TheCork | March 31, 2009 11:27 AM | Report abuse

"Next year has 2 of the best safeties that have come out in years :

Eric Berry from Tennessee

Taylor Mays from USC


Next years 1st round is going to be insane, it would be nice to make some moves to get 2 picks.

Posted by: Yoder-lay-hee-who"

Eric Berry >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Mays


Eric Berry will be a gamechanger ala #21

Mays will be a solid player.


BOOK IT LOSERS

Posted by: TheTruth11 | March 31, 2009 11:29 AM | Report abuse

The Door has been opened for us to get Vick this year. My bandwagon is still kind of empty, though.

Look, Vick doesn't even have to leave Virginia to get a job and he would only want vet min for the next 2 years. We can buy him some obbyist and call it a day......

http://views.washingtonpost.com/theleague/nflnewsfeed/2009/03/falcons-vick-reportedly-settle-contract-case.html

A Wildcat with a real QB is the future.....

Posted by: 4thFloor | March 31, 2009 11:32 AM | Report abuse

I'm am so program too just scroll and do noot attempt to read more than 3 words.......

Posted by: 4thFloor

And then there are the posts when you can just feel the sputtering anger coming thru the electrons. We don't need no steenkin' Spellcheck.

Let's see if 4th responds to "And then there...."

Sincerely 4th, we kid because we love. Some people are born White, some African America. Some Polish. I'm a natural born Smart azz.

"Kinder, less caustic Cork, Kinder less caustic Cork." Its my new Mantra. And I have Beans to thank.

Posted by: TheCork | March 31, 2009 11:33 AM | Report abuse

Maybe Vick could play free safety.

Posted by: Original_etrod | March 31, 2009 11:34 AM | Report abuse

For the record, I dont like Horton deep. He takes bad angles the deeper he gets. That may change with time but I think his greatest value is the third cobra or near the line in a strong position, reading the play and getting to the carrier before he has time to square his shoulders and juke. Horton also gets burnt covering TE's, which is why cobra safety makes sense, he can just stand in the middle and read the Qb or RB... turning his back to the LOS is not what he is good at.

Laron can still blitz from FS, and they should switch it up to keep the offense guessing.

But LL is definately our best option at this point deep. I hope Moore proves otherwise in camp and preseason, but so far it is what it is...

Posted by: Zeebs | March 31, 2009 11:35 AM | Report abuse

if cork and I can have peace, anything is possible......its a good day...

Posted by: BeantownGreg | March 31, 2009 11:38 AM | Report abuse

Anybody going to see a real pro football game inside DC Saturday?

http://www.dcarmor.com/

I know I am going to try to get out there myself. Chuck Brown playing at halftime.

Cork - I'm willing to let the past be the past.........

Posted by: 4thFloor | March 31, 2009 11:40 AM | Report abuse

Cork...I agree, the internet can spark rage with anyone, doesn't reall you cover you for what you think is funny witty humor.

Having said that...I think Moore will surprise us this year, it would be great to see him and Landry play side by side, with Landry taking SS. I thought I read last year that Moore was a pretty quick kid, but cant remember how much truth was in that. Be great to use Horton in certain packages where he would play more of a safety/ LB hybrid role to rush the QB or cover space, shut down the run. Agreed with everyone that for now, Safety is a safe position with the Skins.

Posted by: mhartz1 | March 31, 2009 11:40 AM | Report abuse

I think too much is being made of this. Is Landry a better SS than anyone else on the team? YES. But is he a better FS than anyone else on the team? YES. In fact he may actually be good enough to be the 3rd or 4th corner on the team (exaggeration). But all of that is irrelevant. The question really is "what combination of players gives the team the best opportunity for a W?" As far as I am concerned, nothing else matters. If we win every game 2-0, I and every last one of you would watch every last game, even with it being that boring. It would be better if it were exciting and explosive, but wining is exciting. So all that matters is that W-L-T, and what will help us earn the 32nd pick of next year's draft.

Posted by: moosepod | March 31, 2009 11:41 AM | Report abuse

I think Moore is suited for free safety, Landry at free safety and Horton as the third safety. I believe Doughty is not a gifted athlete and could be pushed out of it altogether. Every highlight film I can remember of Doughty was him running after someone who beat him deep or that terrible pass interference play two years ago. The guy is not a player who rises well to challenges, he's not that gifted an athlete, and he's coming off of an injury. He was Williamson's pet project and surely if the Redskins cut him, he would be picked up by New Orleans where Williamson is now the defensive coordinator. I doubt he is worth any trade value but perhaps Williamson could talk the team into giving up a late round pick for Doughty. If Vinny was smart, he'd start shopping the guy now.

Posted by: RedSkinHead | March 31, 2009 11:25 AM

This post has given me 3 reasons to believe you don't follow Redskins football with any regularity:

1) You keep calling Gregg Williams "Williamson". Once is a typo. Three times means you REEEEALLY don't know his name.

2) Anyone who thinks there's ANY trade value under ANY circumstances for Reed Doughty is the level above insane.

3) Just because Landry has some speed doesn't mean he's suited to play FS. Dude can play both spots rather well, but played some of his best ball at SS. I'll take Blache's word on that over anyone else's.

Posted by: brownwood26 | March 31, 2009 11:43 AM | Report abuse

Anybody going to see a real pro football game inside DC Saturday?

http://www.dcarmor.com/

I know I am going to try to get out there myself. Chuck Brown playing at halftime.

Cork - I'm willing to let the past be the past.........

Posted by: 4thFloor | March 31, 2009 11:40 AM | Report abuse

I may go to a game at some point. But my weekends for the moth are a nightmare. Also saw them on TV, I think it was on RTN Retro Television Network, which is part of ABC's HDTV broadcast, the broadcast was like the amateur porn of football broadcasts, nothing like watching to fat guys sit there silently as the games go on TV.

Posted by: alex35332 | March 31, 2009 11:46 AM | Report abuse

"Eric Berry >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Mays"

I agree, just sayin Mays will be a 1st round pick as well. 21 was a combo of both, Berry's athleticism and Mays' size/hits.

Posted by: Yoder-lay-hee-who | March 31, 2009 11:48 AM | Report abuse

Gonna work on it tho. Winnin season would drive alot of the anger away, methinks.

Posted by: TheCork

lol. We all stuff we need to work on.

JM220

Posted by: icetotalpackage | March 31, 2009 11:49 AM | Report abuse

JM220 - You bailing on Heyer?

Posted by: 4thFloor | March 31, 2009 11:53 AM | Report abuse

al, 10-4, I gotcha, but I just think thats WAY, WAY too early for big phil. I like him, and think he's a talented player, and my dream scenario is trading back into the late 20's and picking him up, but 13 would be a serious reach for him.

Posted by: BeantownGreg | March 31, 2009 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Hey, Beanie, I know you've been pushing Loadholt, but I think #20 is even a stretch for him. To me he looks like a 1-2 year project. I would take him in the third round, but not before that. I'd much rather take Britton , Meredith or Beatty before Big Phil.

Posted by: frediefritz | March 31, 2009 11:56 AM | Report abuse

you guys remember the hit Kareem Moore put on chad ocho cinco johnson...whatever...

highlight reel...he almost knocked the sharpie out of his jock

Posted by: carsonspence | March 31, 2009 11:57 AM | Report abuse

If they can get a deal done with Washington, use him judiciously for run support, and Moore can take a step up this year, then Blache could have some seriously wicked options at his disposal.
Moore playing umbrella means that Landry, Horton, and/or Washington could rove around the line of scrimmage. We might not get more sacks, but you'd bet the QBs will get a bit jumpy.

Posted by: daggar | March 31, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

4th, I wish I could catch the DC Armor, but I dont live in town anymore, friend of mine is a QB on that team, would love to catch him play

One of my hopes with the D this season is that when we get a lead, "WHEN" that we stop running this prevent defense, that prevent kills me.

Posted by: mhartz1 | March 31, 2009 12:02 PM | Report abuse

fried, Phil L, wont last till the 3rd....

Posted by: BeantownGreg | March 31, 2009 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Off the record, I'm a fan of the kinder, less caustic cork thats been around the past few days......

Posted by: BeantownGreg | March 31, 2009 11:12 AM | Report abuse
You're better off keeping those thoughts to yourself.

Posted by: frediefritz | March 31, 2009 12:10 PM | Report abuse

I would love that DC armor thing to work out, but could they do any worse to promote themselves?

Posted by: alex35332 | March 31, 2009 12:10 PM | Report abuse

methinks Reed is one of those "unnamed sources" we hear about if this is even a question

Posted by: TheTruth11

Seems that Doughty's only chance is to KNOW the system and play error FREE.

If 37 beats 48 because of this, then 48 will be available for that big SITUATIONAL run stopping or ball-hawking assignment.

I expect 48, 41, and 37 to make major ST contribbies at the least.


Posted by: pabrian2003 | March 31, 2009 12:11 PM | Report abuse

For the record, I dont like Horton deep. He takes bad angles the deeper he gets. That may change with time but I think his greatest value is the third cobra or near the line in a strong position, reading the play and getting to the carrier before he has time to square his shoulders and juke. Horton also gets burnt covering TE's, which is why cobra safety makes sense, he can just stand in the middle and read the Qb or RB... turning his back to the LOS is not what he is good at.

Laron can still blitz from FS, and they should switch it up to keep the offense guessing.

But LL is definately our best option at this point deep. I hope Moore proves otherwise in camp and preseason, but so far it is what it is...

Posted by: Zeebs | March 31, 2009 11:35 AM | Report abuse

Not really seeing how a guy thats 40 yards off the line of scrimmage is gonna blitz effectively, I think they may see that coming. But this speaks to a larger problem, the skins with their current personnel have no need to be playing their single High free safty centerfield position(or whatever you want to call it). the position was created for 21 he was the only player that had the size speed and ballhawking ability to play that. We need to go back to a more traditional safeties set where the free and strong are more interchangeable. landry was the last guy the QB looked at in the SEC he was the playmaker at or behind the line of scrimmage so he should be there. Horton is a great tackler, he was constantly making tackles for loss or at the line, even on the bigger backs his coverage ability is to underdeveloped. In JLC eyes Doughty should be ahead of Horton, I really cant even justify arguing this as it is absurd, cmon Doughty please weve been married to this guy for a decent while albeit commendable performance for less then half a season. Moore has slightly better coverage then Horton but I still dont see him as an NFL free safety where mistakes can occur so quickly. Bottom line we had a safety squad full of strong safeties, good young ones at that. Adjust the defense to suit our strong points in this instance, having landry back there is a waste, but keep in mind if we do keep him back there that it is a hard position to learn, ST found it very difficult to adjust to and did better at the position over time, Landry could follow a similar path but I dont want to have to wait to find out.

Posted by: Stu27 | March 31, 2009 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Not that it really merits much in terms of comments. I think we have a great set of safeties with great depth. I am looking forward to seeing all 4 in a solid rotation, with a regular use of the 3 safety set, or reverse cobra as I am calling it the rattler.

Posted by: alex35332 | March 31, 2009 12:17 PM | Report abuse

pabrian: "Seems that Doughty's only chance is to KNOW the system and play error FREE."

That's probably true. The weird thing is, he gets close to that at times. Or at least he did, all those months ago.

So you've got two strong safeties with limitations. Horton's a wonderful run-stopper and a ball hawk downfield. Doughty knows the offense and makes few mistakes (a couple big ones, though). Both are limited athletically.

Maybe injuries will decide it. Or maybe one will get lucky early on and pull off a couple big plays. The other will end up on special teams.

Posted by: Samson151 | March 31, 2009 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Actually, it's the defense that Doughty knows. Although he probably knows the offense, too. He's that sort of player.

Posted by: Samson151 | March 31, 2009 12:23 PM | Report abuse

there is NO, I repeat, I say, I repeat, NO reason to put Landry into coverage. Ever. Period.

He should be laying fear into the opponent. Area51 still lives in my mind.

To put Landry into a coverage roll is squandering resources. If they do that to him again, they may as well fire the DC. And I LIKE the DC.

(Though I'm not at all happy w/ how they used JayTay).

Posted by: DikShuttle | March 31, 2009 12:29 PM | Report abuse

yoderlay: "Next year has 2 of the best safeties that have come out in years:Eric Berry from Tennessee Taylor Mays from USC"

They're very impressive. Too bad they have to play games next season, that often diminishes the old rep. But they're wonderful athletes.

Berry's not very big -- around 5'11" and between 200 and 205 -- but quick and a playmaker. Mays has the size (6'2" or a bit taller, and around 230 lbs) and is the big hitter. Is either one the next Sean Taylor or Laron Landry? Hard to say.

Posted by: Samson151 | March 31, 2009 12:29 PM | Report abuse

I would love that DC armor thing to work out, but could they do any worse to promote themselves?

Posted by: alex35332 | March 31, 2009 12:10 PM

Alex, they are having Chuck Brown perform at Halftime.

Tickets to the game or $20.

Tickets to go see Chuck perform are $50.

The arena will pack atleast through halftime. Trust me on this one. And Chuck will prob extend the Halftime to 30 minutes, atleast, because he will be rocking so hard.....

Posted by: 4thFloor | March 31, 2009 12:30 PM | Report abuse

"But this speaks to a larger problem, the skins with their current personnel have no need to be playing their single High free safty centerfield position(or whatever you want to call it)."

Playing a single deep safety isn't a "need", it's a luxury. Most teams require 2-deep in order to protect their corners from single coverage. Landry provides the opportunity for Blache to use an extra player, be it a safety in his "cobra" package, a roamer in the form of Jason Taylor last season, or another blitzer, that he wouldn't have been able to use if Landry weren't playing that position last season. No, Landry wasn't drafted with that position in mind, but he is talented enough to allow Blache to continue with the creative formations that enabled such a dominant defense despite the lack of true playmakers in the front 7 (or front 8 with Landry as the single deep man).

Landry playing that slot is a good thing, not a bad thing.

Posted by: psps23 | March 31, 2009 12:33 PM | Report abuse

I heard a coach make the following point about playing safety: you can make up ground quickly by simply making good decisions. Since the safety is usually deeper than the CB, he can watch the pattern develop a bit more. If he anticipates the break and guesses correctly on where the ball is going, a 4.7 guy can consistently outperform a less educated 4.4 player. Sure, he still lacks 'makeup' speed. But, the argument goes, he has less ground to make up.

Posted by: Samson151 | March 31, 2009 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Sidbury In Demand
Posted by Aaron Wilson on March 31, 2009, 12:09 p.m.
University of Richmond defensive end/outside linebacker Lawrence Sidbury drew a big NFL crowd to his campus Pro Day workout with 31 NFL teams in attendance, according to Gil Brandt of NFL.com.

That included Carolina Panthers General Manager Marty Hurney as well as the Cleveland Browns and Miami Dolphins’ linebackers coaches as Baltimore Ravens linebackers coach Vic Fangio oversaw the workout drills.

At 6-foot-2, 265 pounds, Sidbury is regarded as a strong pass rushing candidate. He has visited the Buffalo Bills and has schedule visits with the Philadelphia Eagles, Dallas Cowboys, Tennessee Titans and St. Louis Rams.

Sidbury ran the 40-yard dash in 4.57 seconds at the NFL Scouting Combine, bench pressing 225 pounds 28 times and turned in a 35-inch vertical leap.

Last season, Sidbury posted 7 1/2 sacks. His workout numbers are superior to his production at this point, but NFL teams are enamored of Sidbury’s potential.

Meanwhile, Richmond running back Josh Vaughan had an impressive workout.

He ran a 4.59 in the 40-yard dash, registered a 37-inch vertical leap, a 9-11 broad jump and bench pressed 225 pounds a staggering 36 times.

=========================================

I say pick up both of them.......

Posted by: 4thFloor | March 31, 2009 12:36 PM | Report abuse

psps: "Blache to continue with the creative formations that enabled such a dominant defense despite the lack of true playmakers in the front 7 (or front 8 with Landry as the single deep man)."

But creative formations aren't Blache's strength, are they? He uses a lot less trickery than Greg Williams did, for instance.

Posted by: Samson151 | March 31, 2009 12:36 PM | Report abuse

I don't care what position he plays, I just don't want to see Landry running up to the line of scrimmage, only to, prior to the snap of the ball, retreat 40 yards backwards....

Posted by: BeantownGreg | March 31, 2009 12:37 PM | Report abuse

"Meanwhile, Richmond running back Josh Vaughan had an impressive workout.He ran a 4.59 in the 40-yard dash, registered a 37-inch vertical leap, a 9-11 broad jump and bench pressed 225 pounds a staggering 36 times."

I can see it now. We design a play where Vaughan leaps over the linebacker AND the cornerback, then picks up the safety and does 44 curls before falling exhausted into the end zone.

Posted by: Samson151 | March 31, 2009 12:39 PM | Report abuse

But creative formations aren't Blache's strength, are they? He uses a lot less trickery than Greg Williams did, for instance.


Posted by: Samson151 | March 31, 2009 12:36 PM


Trickery isn't his thing. He has stated this many times. He is more into simplicity and self discipline.

You didn't see the famous video when JLaC was carried (had a shot taken at) by Blache in that interview late last season when JLa kept bickering him about the lack of pass rush?

The was some good SJK right there...

Posted by: 4thFloor | March 31, 2009 12:41 PM | Report abuse

"But this speaks to a larger problem, the skins with their current personnel have no need to be playing their single High free safty centerfield position(or whatever you want to call it)."

Playing a single deep safety isn't a "need", it's a luxury. Most teams require 2-deep in order to protect their corners from single coverage. Landry provides the opportunity for Blache to use an extra player, be it a safety in his "cobra" package, a roamer in the form of Jason Taylor last season, or another blitzer, that he wouldn't have been able to use if Landry weren't playing that position last season. No, Landry wasn't drafted with that position in mind, but he is talented enough to allow Blache to continue with the creative formations that enabled such a dominant defense despite the lack of true playmakers in the front 7 (or front 8 with Landry as the single deep man).

Landry playing that slot is a good thing, not a bad thing.

Posted by: psps23 | March 31, 2009 12:33 PM | Report abuse


Thats all fine and dandy but the results wernt there. The two biggest deficiencies the skins D had last year were sacks and turnovers. Landry did not make an impact in the turnover margin, he could mak an impact in the amount of sacks we get and would most likely end up with creating fumbles. You can either have a luxury that is not working or you can do what everyone else does and get better results.

Posted by: Stu27 | March 31, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

"Landry playing that slot is a good thing, not a bad thing."

Good and bad. Good in the sense that he is talented enough to get the job done. Bad in the sense that he's not being used in a way that takes full advantage of his gifts as a football player. In the end, having Landry back there has worked out just fine. In a perfect world, he would be allowed to play his natural position...but that's a luxury the Skins no longer have.

Posted by: Yoder-lay-hee-who | March 31, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

"But creative formations aren't Blache's strength, are they? He uses a lot less trickery than Greg Williams did, for instance.

Posted by: Samson151"

Early in his tenure, Williams was very creative and sophisticated with his defensive schemes. In 2007, he really dumbed down the playbook and kept it simple.

Blache took Williams' base formations and philosophies from 2007 and used them relatively the same. However, as the season wore on and it became obvious that (1) None of the other safeties were as versatile or dynamic as Landry was in the SS role, and (2) Jason Taylor clearly wasn't working out as a traditional LDE, Blache became more creative and judicious in his packages, attempting to do the best he could to get those guys into positions of their strengths while minimizing their weaknesses. He even got to the point where he was playing only 1 safety with 3 CBs vs Philadelphia. He also got burned on occasion (remember Lo Alexander attempting to cover Westbrook in the flat?).

Blache started out simple, but he certainly didn't stay that way throughout. His schemes and formations became very creative as the season progressed.

Posted by: psps23 | March 31, 2009 12:46 PM | Report abuse

brownwood26,
You got me man. I pulled a Theisman twice in that post as I meant Williams, and I meant Landry at strong safety - not free safety. I guess I'm no Norman Einstein.

Landry can prowl for the underneath passes and lay the lumber on anyone who puts their hands on the ball. I think Moore has some speed and I heard Blache say last year that he kind of reminded him of ST. Horton plays almost like a linebacker. He can blitz and stuff the run. I agree that he is not as great in coverage, and I think that is why he would be good as the third safety. As for a draft pick for Doughty? There has got to be some GM out there that is dumber than Vinny... right? Right?

Posted by: RedSkinHead | March 31, 2009 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Beep beep.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | March 31, 2009 12:53 PM | Report abuse

"Thats all fine and dandy but the results wernt there. The two biggest deficiencies the skins D had last year were sacks and turnovers. Landry did not make an impact in the turnover margin, he could mak an impact in the amount of sacks we get and would most likely end up with creating fumbles. You can either have a luxury that is not working or you can do what everyone else does and get better results.

Posted by: Stu27"

I don't think you're getting what I'm saying. Playing Landry in the blitzing, in-the-box role requires a single-deep safety. The only player that's proven to be able to do this is Landry himself. If you went to a more "traditional" defense, then Landry would still be playing off the ball, only he'd be paired with another safety back there. He can't blitz or play in the box unless the other guy he's paired with can handle manning the entire "center-field" zone by himself.

I'd love to get Landry back to his more natural position. But unless Moore can prove to handle the single-deep slot, that's not going to happen. Landry was drafted with Sean Taylor in mind. Without ST, Landry can't do what he was envisioned for. ST's prior role, and Landry's current role, is far more critical to the success of the defense.

Posted by: psps23 | March 31, 2009 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Memo to JLC:

Younger players are going to be inconsistent at times and be vulnerable in coverage until they learn the system and get a book on NFL offenses.

What Horton is lacking more than anything else is that experience.

Don't give me the 'he doesn't have the speed to cover' in the short and intermediate zones nonsense. Very few STRONG safeties in the NFL are down the field cover men or they would be playing free safety or corner.

Horton with experience will be able to cover the non-elite tight ends in the league and the pass catching fullbacks.

That is what is required.

The other end of the coin is a strong safety has to be able to force and make the tackle in space.

That is something that Horton does very well.

Posted by: leopard09 | March 31, 2009 1:19 PM | Report abuse

All the more reason to draft Taylor Mays from USC in 2010, who hits, ballhawks and is as much an athlete as another Taylor we all miss.

Posted by: brian58 | March 31, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Who cares about Safety when the Skins have 36 year old Daniels and 35 year old Wynn on the Roster. Both will play hard in the first half of the season then fall apart with arthritis...

Posted by: jercha | March 31, 2009 4:43 PM | Report abuse

""If you made me pick between Doughty and Horton at this point, I'm not sure I could""

wow...just, wow...

Posted by: p1funk | March 31, 2009 4:55 PM | Report abuse

Haynesworth is going to walk on water thus making our defense unstopable. Now that we have him we only need one safety and that should be Landry.

Posted by: sjp879 | March 31, 2009 6:39 PM | Report abuse

Just dropping by the Skins Insider. It's the offseason, so I won't stay for long. Just had to say a few words when I saw this headline.

I'm wondering why there is only one beat reporter at the Washington Post who consistently thinks he knows more about the team he is assigned to cover than those that actually coach the team.

Why is that?

A) Is it that the Skins coaches on all sides of the ball over the last 5 years (the time period that JLC has covered the team) just don't have any idea what they are doing?

B) Is it that JLC is simply a football genius at these things and really does know more about this stuff than our coaches have the past 5 years?

C) Or is it that JLC is a pompous little turd who thinks he knows everything there is to know about the world?

Hmmmm...it's a tough call.

Posted by: Barno1 | March 31, 2009 8:20 PM | Report abuse

JLC, will you please stop trying to sound like you know football. There are about a dozen schemes where a team uses 3 safeties, every one of them isn't called COBRA, its just the only one you know.

Posted by: 6-2StackMonster | March 31, 2009 9:02 PM | Report abuse

The safety problem could be solved by trading Moore or Horton to the Ravens for LaRon's brother, Dawan Landry

Posted by: Dkessler1 | March 31, 2009 11:16 PM | Report abuse

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