The Redskins' offense showed some signs of improvement in the team's 17-13 road loss against the 49ers, but it's still hard to be optimistic about their overall performance when all things are considered; especially as it pertains to the play of Robert Griffin. The defense forced a season-high three turnovers and that combined with Tress Way's booming punts helped to set the offense up with good field position all day. Alfred Morris had what was perhaps the second best game of his career behind only his 200-yard rushing destruction of the Dallas Cowboys in the Redskins' 2012 division clinching win. However, even with all of that, Robert Griffin could not lead the team to victory.
Griffin was sacked five times for the third game in a row and only produced 117 yards of total offense (less than 17 skill-position players in Week 12 alone). Over the past two weeks Griffin has played at a historically awful level for this franchise, and it appears that he may actually be regressing instead of progressing. Nobody knows for sure if his problems are mental, physical or both. Maybe he was never anything more than a system quarterback to begin with. One thing is clear: right now he is doing more harm than good to offense and the team as a whole. If he doesn't turn things around soon, then Jay Gruden will be forced to take matters into his own hands and ultimately Griffin will be benched. In my opinion, it's sink or swim for Griffin this week. If he doesn't right the ship against Indianapolis, then the Redskins will have a Colt of their own running the offense before the game is over.
***Data Disclaimer: This is my own count after watching the game tape. Snap data for kneel-downs and plays negated by pre-snap penalties are not included. However, plays negated by post-snap penalties are included.***
The Offense ran 55 snaps
- 27 Passing Snaps (49%) and 28 Rushing Snaps (51%)
- This was the first time in the 2014 season that the Washington Redskins rushed the ball more than they passed it. Maybe Jay Gruden is finally figuring out how to play to this team's strengths.
- Washington trailed the 49ers during 42 of the team's offensive snaps (76%); the game was tied for the other 13 snaps (24%). This was the fifth time this season that the offense did not take a single snap while the team held the lead.
- The offense was responsible for three of the team's seven penalties (19 of 61 penalty yards). All three of the offensive penalties were committed by linemen in the fourth quarter. Tom Compton (illegal formation) and Kory Lichtensteiger (holding) were flagged on the quarter's first drive, and Morgan Moses' false start infraction took place on the first snap of the game's final drive.
- The Redskins scored on 3 of their 12 drives. The offense went 3-and-out on four occasions (25%) and failed to record more than three snaps on 2 other drives. That makes 6 of the 12 drives (50%) that only lasted three snaps, and they only scored on one of them with a field goal. The offense also failed to record more than five snaps on 9 of the team's 12 drives (75%).
- The Redskins only converted on 2 of their 13 third-down attempts. The resulting 15% conversion rate is pathetic even for this team. This was actually only the second time in 2014 that the offense's third-down conversion rate was lower than 20% (12.5% against the Giants in Week 4).
Team Snap Data:
|Quarter||Number of Snaps (%)|
|Down||Number of Snaps (%)|
|Field Position||Number of Snaps (%)|
|Redskins Side||37 (67%)|
|49ers Side||18 (33%)|
|At or Inside Own 20||10 (18%)|
|Red Zone||7 (13%)|
|Formation||Number of Snaps (%)|
|Under Center||24 (44%)|
|Total Shotgun||31 (56%)|
|Play Type||Number of Snaps (%)|
|Regular Pass||15 (27%)|
|HB Pitch/Toss||9 (16%)|
|Regular Hand-off||9 (16%)|
|Play Action||5 (9%)|
|Zone-Read Play Action||4 (7%)|
|Zone-Read Run||4 (7%)|
|HB Draw||2 (4%)|
|QB Draw||2 (4%)|
|QB Scramble||2 (4%)|
|Trick Play||1 (2%)|
- Only 25 of the 55 snaps occurred in the first half of Sunday's game, the fewest in any half this season for the Redskins.
- Here's some more on the team's third-down woes. Over a quarter of the offense's snaps were on third down in this game (25.45%), the most this season. Only one of third downs (7%) was with less than five yards to go and eight of them (57%) were with seven or more yards to go. That's not a good recipe for success on the "money down".
- Robert Griffin took a season-low 3 snaps (5%) from the pistol formation against the 49ers. Washington had not shown fewer than nine pistol looks in games that Griffin had played in prior to Sunday.
|Personnel||Number of Snaps (%)|
|10 (1 RB/ 0 TE/ 4 WR)||7 (13%)|
|11 (1 RB/1 TE/3 WR)||28 (51%)|
|12 (1 RB/2 TE/2 WR)||0 (0%)|
|21 (2 RB/1 TE/ 2 WR)||11 (20%)|
|22 (2 RB/ 2 TE/ 1 WR)||6 (11%)|
|23 (2 RB/ 3 TE/ 0 WR)||3 (5%)|
- Jay Gruden has not been this diverse and varied with his usage of personnel groupings since the Week 3 road tilt against the Eagles, when he employed six different groupings.
- The Philadelphia game was also the last time that the offense deployed a four-receiver set. The 7 four-receivers snaps in this game exceeded the total number of such snaps previously recorded in the entire 2014 season by the Redskins (6 such snaps in Weeks 1-11).
- The four-wide looks came courtesy of the 10 personnel grouping (one running back and four wide receivers). This was the first time that the 10 grouping had been used in 2014. Typically, Jordan Reed splits out wide or lines up in the slot as a receiver in 11 personnel sets, so it's more than likely that this change had something to do with his absence from the lineup.
- That also helps to explain why the offense did not run a single 12 personnel snap and only took 28 snaps from the 11 grouping. Prior to this game, the Redskins had not taken fewer than 31 snaps from the 11 and fewer than 4 snaps from the 12.
- All three of the plays ran out of the 23 personnel grouping were taken as a part of the team's three goal-to-go snaps - including Morris' touchdown run.
Individual Player Snaps:
Name (* - denotes starter)
|Morgan Moses *||LT||55||100%|
|Shawn Lauvao *||LG||55||100%|
|Kory Lichtensteiger *||C||55||100%|
|Chris Chester *||RG||55||100%|
|Tom Compton *||RT||55||100%|
|Robert Griffin III *||QB||55||100%|
|DeSean Jackson *||WR||47||85%|
|Pierre Garcon *||WR||44||80%|
|Andre Roberts *||WR||36||65%|
|Alfred Morris *||RB||36||65%|
|Ryan Grant *||WR||8||15%|
- Pierre Garcon (44 snaps) and Roy Helu (16 snaps) both saw season-low snap totals against the 49ers.
- Helu's loss has been Alfred Morris' gain, as Morris' snap percentage has consistently risen over the past five weeks (43%, 50%, 53%, 62%, 60% and 65%). And what's good for Morris is good for his lead blocker, Darrel Young, by extension. Young was in on a season-high 36% of the offensive snaps.
- DeSean Jackson has been the Redskins' number two slot guy behind Andre Robert this year, but in this game he only took 4% of his snaps from inside the numbers, his lowest percentage in 2014. Pierre Garcon and Ryan Grant picked up the slot slack by taking eight and seven such snaps respectively.
- The offense passed on 81% and utilized the 11 personnel on 88% of Roy Helu's snaps. Morris' improved play has certainly contributed to Helu's decreased playing time, but it's also possible that it has something to do with Helu himself. Helu had played on no fewer than 32% of offenses' snaps before the bye, but since then he has not eclipsed 30%. It's also clear that Silas Redd is taking some of his work, as Redd recorded three 3rd-down snaps from the 11 personnel, a role usually reserved for Helu.
- Alfred Morris was the back for all team's 20 snaps from "heavy" personnel groupings (the 21, 22 and 23).
- Niles Paul handled all of the 11 personnel work at the tight end position (28 of 28 snaps) and partnered up with Logan Paulsen on the Redskins' nine combined snaps from dual tight end looks. Paulsen took over half of his snaps from the 21 grouping. Offensive line cast off, Tyler Polumbus, made his return as the third tight end on the three snaps from the 23 personnel set.
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