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Doing the Sack Dance

We've chatted a bit this week about the lack of sacks - six through five games - and a general dearth of a pass rush. Well, actually, we've been blogging about this for years, back when Barno still liked me (at least I think he did). Seems to never change.

Defensive coordinator Greg Blache is doing it with coverage, and taking almost no chances with the blitz. It's working, and I totally get why he's doing it. I just wonder if at some point they are going to need to be more effective getting after the quarterback.

Blache didn't want to hear about the low number of sacks - he's not a stats guy - and said that no coach is ever satisfied with the amount of pressure. But he's worried strictly with wins and losses, and doing whatever it takes in the game plan on that particular week to be victorious.

"We'd love to have more sacks, but you do what you have to do to win," Blache said.

No Redskin has more than a single sack, and the linebackers and defensive backs have combined for just a half-sack (again, he's rarely blitzing at all, so that's not surprising). Losing Jason Taylor for most of the season thus far hasn't helped, either, as he was the guy who was supposed to rectify that.

The Skins rank 30th in sacks per pass play. At times the passer has had far too much time to operate, but the superior ability of the corners and some big plays from the safeties has negated that for the most part. Opposing QBs have a meager 77.8 passer rating against the Redskins this season, completing less than 59 percent of their passes, with six TDs and five INTs.

Eventually, though, you figure the Skins will turn the ball over a few times on offense. And there will come a time when they need more takeaways from the defense, and getting the QB is the best place to start in the quest for those type of game changing moments. In the right match-up I think Chris Wilson can give these guys a boost, and if Andre Carter can build off his effort in Philly then that could be a great catalyst for more pressure, too.

Taylor is back practicing, and though he would likely need a week or so to get his legs and conditioning back, he could still give the Skins a few explosive bursts on third downs. If Blache finds a way to get a pass rush going, then this team might really be ready to do damage, because there isn't much else that looks like it needs fixing these days.

By Jason La Canfora  |  October 9, 2008; 7:00 PM ET
 
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Next: Imagine: Jim Zorn and the Wildcat offense...

Comments

I have two sacks!

Sicwidit

Posted by: rickyroge | October 9, 2008 7:07 PM | Report abuse

funny Barno reference...

Posted by: chrislarry | October 9, 2008 7:10 PM | Report abuse

is moving jason taylor to carters side and moving carter to LB(where he's played before). help the pass rush w/o blitzing. it would put our best pass rushers out on the field, and if you put demetric evans on the other end it allows them to play the run just as well as we have been I think.

Posted by: 892617 | October 9, 2008 7:14 PM | Report abuse

The team is 4 & 1 ...We just beat the eagles and Cowboys at home...Our offense has no turnovers.....Why do we need to TRY and find negatives to talk about? For a week now I have seen many references to negatives on the blogs....

How bout we talk about what a great job..the oline is doing and what a hell of a year Portis and Campbell are having?

Who am I kidding...we will never talk about those things....just anything negative to hash out....Waiting for the FO bashing to start again as well....I'm sure JLC is keeping a very close eye on anything that can pop up to start that crap again.

Can we just enjoy the fact we are 4 and 1?

Posted by: leevi98 | October 9, 2008 7:29 PM | Report abuse

If I'm not mistaken Philly led the league in sacks before last week.

Give me run defense over sacks any day.

Posted by: Gfunk | October 9, 2008 7:33 PM | Report abuse

Leevi, I agree and disagree. The team is playing great and deserves some praise. I have been praising. But discussion is stirred by controversy and "issues that need to be addressed." Having said that, JC looks great and Portis is putting it on defenses. Who needs a pass rush when our offense keeps their offenses off the field. A pass rush would be great, don't get me wrong, heck, the gints won it all with mostly that last year, but our coverage is so good that it will soon begin to create more sacks (hopefully.)

Posted by: scampbell1975 | October 9, 2008 7:46 PM | Report abuse

We all know what happens when the name "Barno" is invoked. Beware!

Posted by: allen_wrench | October 9, 2008 8:03 PM | Report abuse

Agreed, allen_wrench. Let us not speak the name of he who shall not be named!

Posted by: PDiddy | October 9, 2008 8:24 PM | Report abuse

And what a fantastic issue to have to deal with, two VERY GOOD tackles, heck, most teams don't even one as good.

Nice Job Snyder/Cerrato and Buges, very nice.

Posted by: craig2 | October 9, 2008 7:43 PM | Report abuse

Are we alowwed to actually praise Snyder and Cerrato in this blog?

Posted by: 4thFloor | October 9, 2008 8:28 PM | Report abuse

Are we alowwed to actually praise Snyder and Cerrato in this blog?

Posted by: 4thFloor | October 9, 2008 8:28 PM | Report abuse

I think that's what the "report abuse" link is for.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | October 9, 2008 8:35 PM | Report abuse

Are we alowwed to actually praise Snyder and Cerrato in this blog?

Posted by: 4thFloor | October 9, 2008 8:28 PM | Report abuse

I think that's what the "report abuse" link is for.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | October 9, 2008 8:35 PM

lol!

Posted by: scampbell1975 | October 9, 2008 8:42 PM | Report abuse

Not to worry even without "pretty boy"(Taylor) we're still getting it done.Evans has done a good job in JT's spot, the O line has been lights out and Joe Bugel deserves serious kudo's for his work, so far he's the coach of the year given his personal tragedy few would disagree.Blache will figure it out he'll find a way to dial up pressure on the opposing qb. Sunday's contest will say a lot about how the Skins will approach these so called creampuff's in the next three weeks.

Posted by: dargregmag | October 9, 2008 8:45 PM | Report abuse

If you look closely at the film, you'll see Heyer better able to handle speed rushers(which are prevalent in the NFL right now) while he has shown improvement against power rushers. Jansen has lost his foot speed, which means he is having serious problems staying in front of speed rushers and stay balanced in order to take on the guy properly. Heyer is learning to be a mean and nasty linemen, if he's healthy, he's the better overall player, and he should play.

And what a fantastic issue to have to deal with, two VERY GOOD tackles, heck, most teams don't even one as good.

Nice Job Snyder/Cerrato and Buges, very nice.

Posted by: craig2 | October 9, 2008 7:43 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: craig2 | October 9, 2008 8:51 PM | Report abuse

The Redskins' defense has only six sacks on the season. But consider the quarterbacks they have faced.

* Brees - tied for third in the NFL with four sacks all season, one sack for every 37 attempts
* Romo - tied for third in the NFL with four sacks all season, one sack for every 40.5 attempts
* Eli M - tied for fifth in the NFL with five sacks all season, one sack for every 26.4 attempts
* McNabb - tied for 20th in the NFL with 10 sacks all season, one sack for every 17.5 attempts
* Warner - 28th in the NFL with 12 sacks all season, one sack for every 15.25 attempts

I find it interesting that so much tends to be made of sacks, but the fact that three of the QBs we've faced had there worst rating of the year against us(the other two were only a couple of points away from the same thing) doesn't get discussed at the same time.

Blache has done exactly what needed to be done against the particular offenses we've faced thus far, just enjoy it, I am!

Posted by: craig2 | October 9, 2008 8:53 PM | Report abuse

"If Blache finds a way to get a pass rush going, then this team might really be ready to do damage, because there isn't much else that looks like it needs fixing these days"

They haven't done any damage yet? Five of the top SIX(as of the game being played) offenses were held to their lowest yardage output and their lowest point total of the season against the Skins, sounds like damage to me.

Posted by: craig2 | October 9, 2008 8:57 PM | Report abuse

No we're not getting sacks, but like everybody said we're 4-1...I'd rather have our record than the best defense in the league!! Right JLC?

Posted by: EsMyDee | October 9, 2008 8:58 PM | Report abuse

Are we alowwed to actually praise Snyder and Cerrato in this blog?

Posted by: 4thFloor | October 9, 2008 8:28 PM | Report abuse

I think that's what the "report abuse" link is for.

Posted by: talent_evaluator | October 9, 2008 8:35 PM

yeah, that was funny, very good on t_e!

Posted by: craig2 | October 9, 2008 8:59 PM | Report abuse

skins will have 11 sacks against the rams...

Posted by: dealer1 | October 9, 2008 9:01 PM | Report abuse

leevi keep thinking everything is fine...

lets hope the players and coaches don't agree and understand that when things are going well its twice as important to work harder, look for weakness in your game and anticipate where future opponents will try to exploit.

I am loathe to defend JLC b/c its such a boring debate, but my gawd the dude has doling out so many HJs that he needs a Costco box of Vaseline....

Its OK to look how the team can improve, actually its a good thing.

Posted by: chrislarry | October 9, 2008 9:02 PM | Report abuse

cl i don't get it...are you saying jasno has been saying nice things about the skins?

Posted by: dealer1 | October 9, 2008 9:04 PM | Report abuse

skins sack bulger 9 times and trent green 3 times

Posted by: dealer1 | October 9, 2008 9:06 PM | Report abuse

Our best pass defense:

Jason Taylor at right defensive end.
Cornelius Griffin at right defensive tackle.
Demetric Evans at left defensive tackle.
Chris Wilson at left defensive end.

Posted by: Glass_Half_Full | October 9, 2008 9:07 PM | Report abuse

skins will have 11 sacks against the rams...

Posted by: dealer1 | October 9, 2008 9:01 PM

skins sack bulger 9 times and trent green 3 times

Posted by: dealer1 | October 9, 2008 9:06 PM

9+3 = 12

So which one is it?

Posted by: 4thFloor | October 9, 2008 9:17 PM | Report abuse

dealer....yes! and when he writes a fair look at an aspect that can improve he gets hammered....

weird, especially when I am sure that the skins D is also thinking that more pressure on QBs will be needed....

but i also dont like the "no need to improve" mentality and all signs of the staff/player suggest they aren't buying the hype either and gettin' after how to be even more beast...

NEVER SATISFIED!

Posted by: chrislarry | October 9, 2008 9:18 PM | Report abuse

It's time for SICWIDIT'S WEEKLY QUIZ SHOW!!!!

Fill in the blanks:

1) ___________, _______________, and ____________ will not be on this team next year.

2) My favorite ex-jock NFL analyst is_______________.

3) _______________will be the next Redskin inducted into the "Ring of Honor".

4) He's a great football player, but__________could never take my daughter out.

5) A record of ______ is needed to win the NFC East

6) When I go to a Skins game I drink at least ________beers.


Have at it RI!

Posted by: rickyroge | October 9, 2008 9:18 PM | Report abuse

i feel a loss coming. we've had too much time to think about ourselves...and they're coming off a bye. dammit.

Posted by: CrappyWaiter | October 9, 2008 9:18 PM | Report abuse

Stats don't win games.......

Posted by: 4thFloor | October 9, 2008 9:19 PM | Report abuse

Sweet I love sic ricky's quizes!

Fill in the blanks:

1) ___________, _______________, and ____________ will not be on this team next year.

2) My favorite ex-jock NFL analyst is_______________.

3) _______________will be the next Redskin inducted into the "Ring of Honor".

4) He's a great football player, but_Brandon Marshall__could never take my daughter out.

5) A record of ___11-4___ is needed to win the NFC East

6) When I watch a Skins game I drink at least ______5__beers.

Posted by: chrislarry | October 9, 2008 9:21 PM | Report abuse

ricky you're making me think to hard

Posted by: CrappyWaiter | October 9, 2008 9:21 PM | Report abuse

I don't give a damn if we don't get another sack this year. As long as we keep winning. Philly has way more sacks than us. Who won the game last week? And some of you are wondering why I think JLC needs to move on.

JM220

Posted by: icetotalpackage | October 9, 2008 9:22 PM | Report abuse

Fill in the blanks:

1) _____Marcus______, ______Jansen_________, and _____Thrash_______ will not be on this team next year.

2) My favorite ex-jock NFL analyst is__Phil Simms_____________.

3) __Portis_____________will be the next Redskin inducted into the "Ring of Honor".

Posted by: chrislarry | October 9, 2008 9:23 PM | Report abuse

There is lots of room for improvement, I just think JASNO tends to write with a bit too much venom. Not sure why, but when I read a lot of his stuff there is just an undercurrent of "hate", even when he is spouting positive stuff(it's weird really).

Like the first paragraph, for one thing, I disagree with this part, "and a general dearth of a pass rush"

Sacks don't necessarily mean their is no pressure. There has been pressure, just not sacks. Sacks are not the only measure of pressuring a quarterback.

And, as I posted above, there is the factor of quality quarterbacks who know how to get rid of the ball.

Posted by: craig2 | October 9, 2008 9:24 PM | Report abuse

Jm220/4th....please get real, we obviously need to rush the passer better if we want the season this team is very capable of having....

I cant believe you guys dont want to analyze how the team can improve at week 5.....

Posted by: chrislarry | October 9, 2008 9:26 PM | Report abuse

The Skins are the real deal this year. They have faced five good teams this year and prevailed against all but one. And that one they lost to in the 1st quarter, and won 7-6 the rest of the way.

The next three games will be won with ease. We may have some questions with our team, sacks, special teams (especially punting) and whether or not we are starting the correct RT. Our 2nd rd picks are not where we think they should be.

But to think that the team is taking the view that we the fans are taking, to me, is amazing. If anyone of us can think of a weakness on our team, then I am sure that the coaches and players are also seeing that weakness and are working on it. No one is more grounded than our coaches and are not going to let the praise of the fans and media make them think all they have to do is show up. Who is more concerned about the Rams offense than Blache?

It is also funny to me that some are hesitant to say something because they do not want to jinx the team. The players need to bring it every week and the coaches need to get them ready to play every week. Film work and game planning.

They look and sound very confident, but not cocky, and seem to be hungry, taking the position of us against the NFL.

I am with Craig and Leevi, let's enjoy the product that is being displayed on the field. Nothing wrong with conversation on perceived weaknesses or who should start at what position, but let's not worry that the coaches are not doing the right thing. Me, I am not worried about the next three games.

Posted by: Curzon417 | October 9, 2008 9:28 PM | Report abuse

I give up, yes he hates them.....

if this line doesnt scream hate I dont know what does

"If Blache finds a way to get a pass rush going, then this team might really be ready to do damage, because there isn't much else that looks like it needs fixing these days."

Posted by: chrislarry | October 9, 2008 9:28 PM | Report abuse

It's time for SICWIDIT'S WEEKLY QUIZ SHOW!!!!
Fill in the blanks:
1) Washington, Fabini and Doughty will not be on this team next year.
2) My favorite ex-jock NFL analyst is Woodson (NFLN).
3) Portis will be the next Redskin inducted into the "Ring of Honor".
4) He's a great football player, but- to many to list -could never take my daughter out.
5) A record of 13-3 is needed to win the NFC East
6) When I go to a Skins game I drink at least ________beers.


Thanks for these Sic, keep them coming!

Posted by: Curzon417 | October 9, 2008 9:33 PM | Report abuse

what is surprising is that we've played the #2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 offenses in the nfl and they all come with very talented QBs. you would think that sitting back and not blitzing might work against average QBs but not against elite QBs. but no QB has had a big day against us. Romo threw for 300 yds but 1/2 of that was garbage yards at the end of each half. Even in the one loss Manning looked pretty poor.

whatever works...let the cowboys continue to worry about stats.

Posted by: DreamOutLoud | October 9, 2008 9:47 PM | Report abuse

One thing I'd like to ponder is how Dan Snyder must feel during this recent run...He's made some major blunders with this team, he's wasted money, traded draft picks and drawn the scorn of fans, but to see this come together like it has so far, must be pretty gratifying.

I know I sound like a complete Snyder-tool, but for all the hell he catches he must be impossible to live with right now.

Hail to em' though!!!

Posted by: rickyroge | October 9, 2008 9:48 PM | Report abuse

Yes, I'm doing this NOW!

WHY THIS TEAM COULD (emphasize COULD) WIN IT ALL...

1) This is a veteran team with a good mix of youngsters. Most of these guys were in the playoffs and remember what it takes.

2) Zorn is bringing out the talent that has been here all along.

3) They have beaten the best teams in the league in a physical fashion.

If we stay healthy, we could go deep!

Posted by: rickyroge | October 9, 2008 9:55 PM | Report abuse

It's time for SICWIDIT'S WEEKLY QUIZ SHOW!!!!

Fill in the blanks:

1) Reed Doughty, Marcus Washington, and Jason Fabini will not be on this team next year.

2) My favorite ex-jock NFL analyst is Woodson.

3)Sean Taylor will be the next Redskin inducted into the "Ring of Honor".

4) He's a great football player, but Chad Johnson could never take my daughter out.

5) A record of 12-4 is needed to win the NFC East

6) When I go to a Skins game I drink at least ____?___beers. We'll see in December.

Posted by: scampbell1975 | October 9, 2008 10:07 PM | Report abuse

I was thinking about putting Keyshawn in there with Woodson but I hated him so much as a player I couldn't stomach it. Terrell Owens could replace CJ too.

Posted by: scampbell1975 | October 9, 2008 10:10 PM | Report abuse

Scamp, I agree with you on Keyshawn...

Posted by: Curzon417 | October 9, 2008 10:24 PM | Report abuse

4th, 13. They also sack steven Jackson on one of those direct snap deal of weird al plays

Posted by: dealer1 | October 9, 2008 11:30 PM | Report abuse

CL, I don't know what's up with your boy jm220...in this economy he wants someone to take away someones livelyhood...someone who's been a stand upguy...and as hardworker jasno is. Czabe is friggin still employed by snyder...cmon!

Posted by: dealer1 | October 9, 2008 11:37 PM | Report abuse

Is anyone else concerned that Al Saunders knows our defense? Vinny was asked about this today by Larry M - something along the lines of "Since Al Saunders knows our defense and we know his offense will that be a wash for both parties?" Vinny replied that Saunders went against Gregg Williams defense in practice not Blache's but still - kind of the same thing.

The Rams have not YET won a game but Remember The Titans in 2005 (or was it 2006? They came into Fedex Field at 0-5 and left at 1-5 with a win over the Skins.

Posted by: Lisa_R | October 9, 2008 11:40 PM | Report abuse

Before the season, the Redskins' odds for division, conference and Super Bowl titles were 13-2, 18-1 and 40-1. The current listings are 3-1, 6-1 and 12-1.

Time to cash in those fast sinking 401k's, lads, and get that money down on the RedDawgs.

Hail to 'em!!

Posted by: RedskinWillie | October 9, 2008 11:49 PM | Report abuse

leevi keep thinking everything is fine...

lets hope the players and coaches don't agree and understand that when things are going well its twice as important to work harder, look for weakness in your game and anticipate where future opponents will try to exploit.

I am loathe to defend JLC b/c its such a boring debate, but my gawd the dude has doling out so many HJs that he needs a Costco box of Vaseline....

Its OK to look how the team can improve, actually its a good thing.

Posted by: chrislarry | October 9, 2008 9:02 PM | Report abuse

I agree with you 100% but that's the coaches job not mine...I'm just a fan

Posted by: leevi98 | October 10, 2008 12:07 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: Curzon417 | October 10, 2008 12:24 AM | Report abuse

So we have few sacks. The defense has been very effective. But there's another story in this.

Skins rush 4, so you'd think they would get decent pressure without a blitz.

But linemen have additional responsibilities and it appears that the Skins linemen take care of those first. What am I talking about? Draws, screens and QB runs. Plays that are effective against a team that is thinking pass rush and nothing else.

Anyone recall other teams running effective draws or screens against this defense? Or a QB running effectively? Hasn't happened much. Instead, the Skins line tends to keep the play in front of them. Tipped passes is another positive result we've seen.

As the season goes on, the Skins will need to get more sacks and throw in more blitzes too keep the other teams guessing. But a sound defense comes first. And like it was last year, this is a very sound defense.

Posted by: zcezcest1 | October 10, 2008 3:30 AM | Report abuse

first!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: dealer1 | October 10, 2008 7:49 AM | Report abuse

Perfection is unattainable. (Just ask the 2007 Patriots.)

Constructive criticism is like Jello: there's always room for a little.

Posted by: tafka | October 10, 2008 7:52 AM | Report abuse

Maybe Blache is saving his blitz plays for the second time around the division

Posted by: Tappahannock | October 10, 2008 8:01 AM | Report abuse

good morning! we are alive! we made it thru yesterday and we are here today to face another day that is shaping up to be pretty brutal...i'm looking at the asian markets right now...they might be reacting to us but who knows...

i know most of us out there are freaking out about the economy, i know i am. but i think something good will come out of this. and when we do america (and the rest of the world) will be free of dependence on oil, will spend less and live within their means.

we have to see this as a positive and an opportunity to improve. and for those who have cash i'd suggest keep it in cash. and reasses after 3/6 months about what you want to do with that cash.

you may hear people say "buy now! (in the stock market)" but resist the temptation to buy and sell. just hold on it's gonna be a bumpy ride. but we'll come thru it.

and skins make such a good distraction these days don't they? after we come thru this and skins have won a superbowl we should all send a big thank you to jim zorn and even danny and vinny for giving us a good distraction.

Posted by: dealer1 | October 10, 2008 8:02 AM | Report abuse

Hey, it's Friday! Time for weekly TCCL's! Hip Hip Hooray!

100 TCCL's for Dealer, for his nearly-impeccable comedic timing.

100 TCCL's for LearnedHand, for his very-funny-and-perfectly-understated Leonard Little joke.

10,000 TCCL's for Beantown Greg for his meaningful contributions to the ongoing blog discussions. (They're just like Bonus Points, Greg - have fun with them!)

Posted by: tafka | October 10, 2008 8:08 AM | Report abuse

beep beep - naturally.

Posted by: tafka | October 10, 2008 8:09 AM | Report abuse

Sell, Mortimer! SELLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!

Posted by: tafka | October 10, 2008 8:19 AM | Report abuse

Hello Redskins Nation.

We are very excited to have the team come home after winning two NFC East road games against the Dallas Cowboys and the Philadelphia Eagles. HAIL!

This week we have the St. Louis Rams, and this will not be an easy game, especially if we want to maintain our growth and standing the NFC East, the NFC conference, and the league.

We are the only team in the NFL with a battle cry (Hail to the Redskins!). And now we are the only team in the NFL with a post-game celebrate chant thanks to our new Head Coach Jim Zorn (Hip-Hip Hooray!).

After beating the Dallas Cowboys, the supposedly best team in the NFL, Jim Zorn in the locker led the team in a celebration chat of Hip-Hip Hooray. It would be exciting to have the entire stadium, and the Redskins Nation, join the team in the celebration chant before they head to the locker room.

My brother and I are organizing the first Hip-Hip Hooray celebration chant this Sunday after our team beats the St. Louis Rams at the stadium. If it is clear at the 2:00 minute warning of the 4th quarter that the Washington Redskins will win the game we ask that all Redskins fans in the stadium (we will be at the game in Section 424---Row 12---Seats 7, 8 & 9) to join us in a celebration chant of Hip-Hip Hooray!

If it is not clear by the 2:00 minute warning of the 4th quarter that we will win the game then we will start the chant 30 seconds later at 1:30 minute mark. If not then, then 30 second later at the 1:00 minute mark. If not then, then 30 seconds later at the 30 second mark.

You get the pattern. At some point at the 2:00 minute warning of the 4th quarter or after we want to do the chant if it is clear we will win the game. We do not want to do the chant before the 2:00 minute warning of the 4th quarter!

To make it easy for everyone to participate for the first time we asking that the entire stadium join together in the Hip-Hip Hooray chant in unison. And yes brings to celebrate.

If we are successful in getting fans to join in after the game this week, then we will organize the second chant with sections of the stadium doing the call (Hip-Hip) and the other sections doing the response (Hooray!).

We hope this celebration chant will become a tradition for Redskins fans attending the game after each victory.

Please join us this Sunday for a big Hip-Hip Hooray, after we win the game.

Thanks,

Derek Silver and Marvin Silver
Washington Redskins Fans 4 Life

PS, Check us out on Facebook at Hip-Hip Hooray (Washington Redskin's Coach Jim Zorn's Celebration Cry) and help Spread the Word. silver_marvinm@msn.com

Posted by: silvermarvin | October 10, 2008 10:04 AM | Report abuse

Barno is the man. I'm going to the game with him Sunday!

Posted by: epostell | October 10, 2008 10:39 AM | Report abuse

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