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Skins Snaps & Stats: Redskins @ Lions

A look at the snap counts and stats for every player on the Redskins in the team's Week 7 matchup against the Detroit Lions

Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports


Snaps- The Redskins' offense was on the field for 73 snaps on Sunday.  It was the second week in a row that Sean McVay's bunch played on 70 or more snaps, and the first time since Weeks 3 and 4 of 2015 that the offense has seen that much action in back-to-back games.

Eighteen of the offense's 24 players played in the game.  Of the six that did not: four were inactive (Nate Sudfeld, Rashad Ross, Jordan Reed and Vinston Painter), one only played on special teams (John Sullivan) and one did not take a snap of any kind (Colt McCoy).

Red Zone- The Redskins scored touchdowns on two of their three trips to the red zone.  They likely would have gone a perfect 3 for 3 in the red area, had it not been for a costly Matt Jones fumble into the end zone that resulted in a Lions' touchback.  If you want to look at things from a glass-half-full perspective, then consider that the team has scored a TD on 9 of its last 14 red-zone trips (64.3%) dating back to Week 4, after converting on just 3 of their 14 opportunities (21.4%) from Weeks 1-3.

Opportunity Lost- The Redskins outdid the Lions in just about every major statistical category in this game.  They bettered them in total yards (417 to 344), passing yards (283 to 250), rushing yards (134 to 94) and penalty yards (20 to 30).  Prior to Sunday's game, the Redskins had only seen positive yardage margins of equal or greater value in all of those categories just 37 times since 1940.  They went 34-3 in those games.

They lost the turnover battle in two of those three contests, and losing that battle 2-0 to Detroit on Sunday is ultimately what cost them this game.  Washington had come away with two consecutive victories in games with a negative turnover margin in Weeks 5 and 6 (-1 in both), so perhaps they got what was coming to them after playing with fire for the third week in a row.  The Redskins also had the edge in first downs (26 to 19), third-down conversions (9-15 to 3-9) and time of possession (34:59 to 25:01).

Quarterbacks (3)
Player (* - denotes starter) Snaps Snap %
Kirk Cousins * 73 100%
Colt McCoy 0 0%
Nate Sudfeld Inactive N/A
  • Kirk Cousins Stats- This loss was not on Kirk Cousins, who had one of his better games of the season and put up his second best QBR (70.3), passer rating (106.9), PFF grade (72.1) and completion percentage (76.9%) numbers on the year.  He also posted a season-high 82.6 raw QBR (raw QBR is not adjusted for opponents) and 19 rushing yards.  All of his rushing yards came on his late-fourth quarter 19-yard touchdown.  It was a career long run for Cousins and his first TD on the ground this season.  Cousins was, however, credited with two fumbles in the game.  Matt Jones may have been more at fault in both cases, but the NFL almost always charges fumbled handoffs to the quarterback. 
  • Racking up the Redskins Yards- Cousins racked up 301 passing yards on Sunday, marking his 14th regular season contest with 300 or more yards through the air.  Now only Sonny Jurgensen has more 300-yard games as a Redskin than Cousins does in the regular season.  If you include postseason games in the equation, then Cousins has already matched Jurgensen with 15 total games of 300 or more yards. 
Wide Receivers (6)
Player (* - denotes starter) Snaps Snap %
Pierre Garcon * 57 78%
Jamison Crowder * 55 75%
DeSean Jackson * 54 74%
Ryan Grant 20 27%
Maurice Harris 4 5%
Rashad Ross Inactive N/A
  • DeSean Jackson- DeSean Jackson did not catch a pass in the first half of the game and finished the day with five receptions for zero first downs and just 35 yards on eight targets.  Unfortunately, this is nothing new for Jackson this season, who is having one of his worst years as a pro.  He is averaging career lows in yards per game (52.6), yards per reception (13.3) and yards per target (7.5).  He's also having his second worst season in terms of first down and touchdown production (1.71 and 0.14 per game).  At this rate, the Redskins will probably be busy searching for Jackson's replacement in a couple of months.
  • Pierre Garcon- Pierre Garcon didn't have a great day at the office, either.  He was only able to muster two receptions for two first downs and 22 yards on five targets.  Every one of those numbers represented a season-low for Garcon.
  • Jamison Crowder- What would we do without Jamison Crowder?  Crowder led the team in targets (9), receptions (7), receiving first downs (5) and receiving yards (108) against the Lions.  With the exception of targets, he set new season highs in each of those categories.  His reception and yardage totals against Detroit were both the second best of his career.  Crowder leads in the Redskins in receiving yards (391), receiving touchdowns (3) and total touchdowns (4) this season.
  • Ryan Grant- You heard it here first: Ryan Grant is not good at football and he probably never will be.  If you want to know how good (or bad really) that Grant is, then let's take a look at how he compares to all of the other number four receivers in the league.  For the purposes of this exercise we're assuming that Grant is the #4 and not Doctson.  Grant's ten receiving yards this season are the lowest by any fourth receiver (4th on their respective teams in terms of yards) in the league this year.  The other 31 players in this group have put up an average of 83 receiving yards this season.  You have to include Grant's last 17 games (including postseason) just to get him to 84 total yards.
  • Josh Doctson- Doctson's 66 receiving yards on two receptions in his two games this season are just 16 yards short of what Grant has done in the last full calendar year.  It will be extremely disappointing if Doctson does not return this year and if that is his final rookie stat line.  If that's the case, then he will have the lowest rookie all-purpose yardage total of any Redskins' first round and top-37 overall wide receiver pick in team history.  Desmond Howard would be the only other one of six first-round wide receivers in franchise history to not record at least 500 yards receiving in his rookie year.  First rounders Charley Taylor, Art Monk, Rod Gardner and Michael Westbrook put up 814, 797, 741 and 522 receiving yards in their respective rookie campaigns.
Tight Ends (3)
Player (* - denotes starter) Snaps Snap %
Vernon Davis * 71 97%
Niles Paul 19 26%
Jordan Reed Inactive N/A
  • Vernon Davis- Thirty-two-year-old Vernon Davis played on 97% of the snaps for the second consecutive game and hit new season highs in targets (6), receptions (6) and receiving yards (79).  The 79 yards receiving in the game are his most since Week 15 of 2013, when he matched that total as a member of the 49ers.  Davis would have topped the 100-yard mark in the game if his 27-yard reception in the fourth quarter had not been negated by a Ryan Grant illegal formation penalty.  Even so, Davis still had more receiving yards than every other tight end and receiver on the team not named Jamison Crowder, combined (79 to 73).  Davis' receptions were responsible for getting Washington into the red zone on two of the team's three trips inside the 20.
Running Backs (3)
Player (* - denotes starter) Snaps Snap %
Chris Thompson 43 59%
Matt Jones * 22 30%
Robert Kelley 10 14%
  • Matt Jones- After racking up 135 rushing yards in what was probably the best game of his career last week against the Eagles, Jones crashed back to earth against the Lions on Sunday.  He only managed 27 yards on ten carries (2.7 yards per carry) and lost a fumble on a crucial goal-to-go carry.  I wish I could say that his yardage total and average were career worsts, but they actually represent only his sixth and seventh worst marks in his 20 games as a pro.  Jones has now fumbled eight times in that brief career (6 fumbles lost).  He's fumbling the ball on one of every 30 carries he takes and one of every 34 touches he gets.  The average starting running back easily gets that many opportunities every two games.  Fumbling that often is simply not acceptable unless you are at least a borderline transcendent talent, Matt Jones is not.
  • Robert Kelley- Robert Kelley didn't get much run in spite of Jones' struggles, but he was highly effective with the opportunities that he got.  He only put up 15 yards on four attempts (3.8 average), but he was successful on three of his four attempts in the game.  He picked up first downs on two of his rushes and took a first-and-ten for a five yard gain.  His only bad run of the day occurred when he only gained a yard on first down.  Kelley also caught a 1-yard touchdown pass, the first TD of his career.  Don't fool yourself into thinking that Kelley can't catch, he caught as many passes as a sophomore at Tulane (46 receptions) as Matt Jones has in his college and pro careers combined.
  • Chris Thompson- Chris Thompson stole the show and led the game with 6 first downs, 73 yards rushing and 113 yards from scrimmage.  He also led all non-quarterbacks with a 6.1 yards per carry average.  Thompson has now gone over 100 total yards in each of his last two games after not hitting that mark in any of his previous 25 games (including playoffs).  With this standout performance, Thompson became just the seventh Redskins player since at least 1960 to rush for 70 or more yards, average six yards per carry or better, to catch four or more passes and to go for 40 or more yards receiving in a single game.  Half of that list is comprised of Bobby Mitchell, Earnest Byner and Larry Brown. 
  • CT's PT- I'm not going to say that Thompson should be the Redskins' starting running back, but he is the best player on the team's RB depth chart.  It seems like the Redskins coaches might share that sentiment.  Chris Thompson has now out-snapped Matt Jones in four of seven games this season and in nine of the 17 career games that they've played in together.  Both players have been on the field for exactly 221 snaps this season.
  • Redskins Rushing- The offense ran the ball 29 times and on 41% of the plays for a total of 134 yards and an average of 4.6 yards per attempt.  Each of those numbers were only slightly above what the team averaged going into the game.  It was, however, the second time since Weeks 1-2 of the 2015 season that the offense went for over 125 on the ground in consecutive weeks.
Offensive Linemen (9)
Player (* - denotes starter) Snaps Snap %
Shawn Lauvao * 73 100%
Spencer Long * 73 100%
Morgan Moses * 73 100%
Trent Williams * 72 99%
Brandon Scherff * 58 79%
Arie Koundijo 15 21%
Ty Nsekhe 11 15%
John Sullivan ST Only 0%
Vinston Painter Inactive N/A
  • Offensive Line (Group)- After not allowing a sack and just two hits on Kirk Cousins last week against the Eagles, the Redskins' pass blocking regressed some this week, as the Lions got two sacks, four hits and 12 hurries on Cousins.
  • Offensive Line (Individual)- Despite the line's dip in the pass protection department, most of the players on this unit enjoyed a decent day in Detroit.  Trent Williams was at least partially responsible for both of the sacks on Cousins, but his 89.6 run-blocking grade made up for most of his shortcomings.  Williams was the team's highest graded player by PFF (86.6).  For the third time this season, Morgan Moses did not allow a pressure of any kind.  Spencer Long got blown up on a running play and the resulting backfield penetration that he allowed ultimately caused a fumble, but he had an otherwise productive day.  After missing just one snap in his first 23 career games (including playoffs), Brandon Scherff was forced to sit out 15 snaps because of a sprained AC joint.  When he was on the field, Scherff played well yet again.  He did not allow any pressures on Cousins.  He has not given up a sack all season, and has only given up four QB hits.  Arie Koundijo struggled mightily in relief of Scherff, as he allowed three hits and a hurry on just ten pass blocking snaps.  Moses, Long and Scherff earned the offense's second, third and fourth best PFF grades.


Snaps- The defense got just 53 snaps of work in Detroit.  That is the second lowest snap total for the unit this season and since Week 2 of 2015.  The only other total lower in that span took place against the Eagles last week (52 snaps).

Of the team's 26 defenders, 20 of them took part on those plays.  Three defensive players were inactive (Anthony Lanier, Dashaun Philips and Josh Evans) and another three of them only participated on special teams (Martrell Spaight, Houston Bates and Deshazor Everett).  Six of the 20 that did get in the game, played on 11 or fewer snaps (Cullen Jenkins, Matt Ioannidis, Su'a Cravens, Terence Garvin, Greg Toler and Duke Ihenacho).

Rushing Defense- The defense held the Lions to 94 yards on the ground.  It was the second time in as many games that Washington has held its opposition to under 100 yards rushing.  Although, that's not saying a whole lot when your opponent's top three runners were all on the shelf with injuries.  It's even less impressive when you consider the Redskins allowed a rushing touchdown and a 4.9 yards per carry average to that team.

Scoring- After not allowing a touchdown in nine consecutive quarters and 152 minutes of game action, the defense gave up a TD to the Lions midway through the third quarter.  It was also the first second-half touchdown allowed by the team since Week 3.

Third-Down Defense- For the third straight game the Redskins' defense clamped down on the money down, as they only allowed Detroit to convert on three of their nine third-down conversion attempts (33.3%).  In Weeks 1-3, the defense allowed opponents to convert 27 of 47 third-down opportunities.  While in the last three games, they have only given up conversions on 10 of the opposition's 36 third-down tries (27.8%).

Quarterback Pressure- The Redskins pass defense was effective both when they were able to get pressure on Matthew Stafford and when they blitzed him.  Stafford completed just two of his eight attempts for 31 yards and a 43.2 QB rating when pressured.  He went three for nine with a 49.8 rating when Joe Barry dialed up blitzes.

Detroit's Game-Winning Drive- The Lions gained 14 or more yards and picked up first downs on all four of the plays of the final drive in which Joe Barry sent four or fewer defenders after Matthew Stafford.  Stafford threw incompletions on each of the Redskins' two blitzes on the drive (5 rushers) and was hit on one of them.   The lone play in which three players rushed led to Detroit's game winning touchdown.  Maybe Barry should've considered not playing as soft against a quarterback, in Matthew Stafford, who ranks second in game winning drives (24) since he entered the league in 2009, especially considering how well the defense had done when they blitzed and got pressure on him.

Defensive Linemen (6)
Player (* - denotes starter) Snaps Snap %
Ziggy Hood * 44 83%
Chris Baker * 43 81%
Ricky Jean Francois 16 30%
Cullen Jenkins 10 19%
Matt Ioannidis 4 8%
Anthony Lanier Inactive N/A
  • Chris Baker & Ziggy Hood- Both Chris Baker and Ziggy Hood set new season highs in defensive-snap percentage (83% and 81%).  Baker made three combined tackles (2 solo and 1 assisted) and Hood made two (1 solo and 1 assist).  For just the second time this season, neither player recorded a sack or a hit in the game.  However, they were the only two Redskins D-linemen to record a pressure of any kind; unfortunately, those pressures were only hurries.
  • Reserve DL- Baker and Hood's increased playing time came at the expense of the team's backup defensive linemen, as the reserves played on just 30 combined snaps and 26% of the Redskins' total DL snaps in the game, both easily season lows.  Ricky Jean Francois, Cullen Jenkins and Matt Ioannidis each saw season low snap totals against the Lions.  Jenkins' snap percentage has dropped in four of the five weeks since he was signed and Ioannidis' percentages dropped for the second consecutive week.  Jenkins made two tackles in the game, but Jean Francois and Ioannidis didn't show up on the stat sheet at all.  Clearly the team doesn't have any faith in their defensive line depth, but can we really fault them for that?
Outside Linebackers (4)
Player (* - denotes starter) Snaps Snap %
Ryan Kerrigan * 40 75%
Preston Smith * 38 72%
Trent Murphy 31 58%
Houston Bates ST Only 0%
  • Ryan Kerrigan- In his 87th consecutive start, Kerrigan did was he does best, and terrorized the opposing quarterback.  Kerrigan pressured Matthew Stafford a whopping eight times in the game and finished one of those plays off with a sack.  He has now recorded a sack in three consecutive contests and is tied with Trent Murphy for the team lead with six.  Kerrigan also leads the team in sack yards (39) and tackles for a loss (9). 
  • Trent Murphy- Murphy tallied two tackles and two pressures against the Lions.  He got a sack and forced a fumble on one of those plays.  He has now recorded at least a half-sack in six consecutive games.  The only other players with an active streak of a half sack or more in six consecutive games are Von Miller and NFL sack leader and former Redskin Lorenzo Alexander.  Murphy now has six sacks in just seven games this year; he had only recorded six sacks in his previous 31 career games prior to this season.
  • Preston Smith- Preston Smith's only pressure of the game resulted in his first full sack of the year.  That makes it two weeks in a row that all three outside linebackers have recorded a sack.  That's what I like to see.  Something else I would like to see is the Redskins putting out all three of their top OLBs on the field together in obvious passing situations.  For example, on the Lions' final drive of the game, they were together on zero snaps (Kerrigan 6, Murphy 4 and Smith 2).  Joe Barry instead opted to throw Ziggy Hood out on all six plays.  Look, I know Smith isn't quite living up to expectations as a pass rusher this year, but he's still better than Hood in that department.  Smith has 10.5 sacks in 24 career games (including playoffs), while Hood has 15.5 in 109 games.  That's .44 to .14 sacks per game.
Inside Linebackers (5)
Player (* - denotes starter) Snaps Snap %
Will Compton * 53 100%
Mason Foster * 40 75%
Su'a Cravens 11 21%
Terence Garvin 3 6%
Martrell Spaight ST Only 0%
  • Inside Linebackers- Will Compton played on 100% of the snaps for the third time this season and led Washington in solo tackles (5).  His tackles-per-opportunity rate of 22% was the best on the team.  Compton also fared well in coverage.  He allowed just one reception for eight yards and recorded a pass defense on the other target in his direction.  Mason Foster allowed three receptions for 38 yards on four targets and also had a pass defense.  He was PFF's second highest graded defender and fourth highest rated player on the team overall (82.4).  His five total tackles ranked third on the team.  Su'a Cravens only played a season-low 11 snaps, but did chip in with a tackle and a QB hit on one of his two blitzes in the game.  With Cravens back, Terence Garvin was relegated to spot duty again (3 snaps).
Cornerbacks (6)
Player (* - denotes starter) Snaps Snap %
Bashaud Breeland * 49 92%
Kendall Fuller * 40 75%
Josh Norman * 28 53%
Quinton Dunbar 27 51%
Greg Toler 5 9%
Dashaun Philips Inactive N/A
  • Josh Norman- Josh Norman's primary responsibility against the Lions was to shut down breakout wide receiver Marvin Jones.  That is exactly what he did on every one of his snaps but one; ironically, that one snap was his last of the game.  Jones was not targeted until the 8:49 mark in the third quarter, and on that play Norman allowed him to catch a 52-yard bomb down the field and was flagged for pass interference.  That sequence produced both Norman's first accepted DPI infraction of the year and the longest pass that he's allowed this season.  He was injured on the play (concussion) and did not return to the game.  This was the first time that Norman has played on fewer than 89% of the defensive snaps as a Redskin.
  • Bashaud Breeland- Breeland was Washington's most targeted defender in the game (5 targets with at least 2 of those coming in the red zone).  He allowed three receptions for 38 yards.  He missed a tackle, his fifth miss in five games played this year.  Breeland also made three solo tackles and deflected a pass.

  • Kendall Fuller- Kendall Fuller played on three quarters of the snaps and was the Redskins' only starting corner to make it through the game without suffering an injury; unfortunately, he didn't do much with the opportunity.  He allowed three receptions for 47 yards on four targets.  One of those targets resulted in the Lions' game-winning touchdown and the aforementioned incompletion was dropped by Golden Tate.  He did not record a single stat on those four targets and his 40 snaps.
Safeties (5)
Player (* - denotes starter) Snaps Snap %
Donte Whitner * 53 100%
Will Blackmon * 39 74%
Duke Ihenacho 9 17%
Deshazor Everett ST Only 0%
Josh Evans Inactive N/A
  • Will Blackmon- After playing 100% of the snaps in the games since DeAngelo Hall was placed on injured reserve, Will Blackmon was on the field for just under three quarters of the defensive snaps against the Lions.  He played less, but he still made a big impact.  He allowed one of the two targets in his direction to be completed for just three yards, made four total and three solo tackles and defended a team-high two passes.  Blackmon was PFF's highest graded defender in the game (84.8). 
  • Donte Whitner & Duke Ihenacho- After out-snapping Duke Ihenacho 40 to 19 last week, Donte Whitner got his first start of the season and played on all 53 defensive snaps in the game.  Whitner has now out-snapped Ihenacho 93 to 28 in the last two weeks.  Whitner led the team in assisted (4) and total tackles (8).  He did not miss a tackle and two of his tackles were counted as defensive stops.  He allowed one reception for seven yards on two targets.  Duke Ihenacho made one solo tackle on his nine snaps in the game.  With the team averaging 1.91 safety snaps per defensive snap and Su'a Cravens returning to the lineup, it looks as if the team may be moving away from the three-safety look that they had used in recent weeks.


Snaps- Thirty-four players took part on a season-low 22 special teams snaps on Sunday.  That is tied for the second lowest special teams snap total since the start of 2015 (21 snaps in Week 1 of last year).  The unit was comprised of 20 defenders, 11 offensive players and 3 specialists (Hopkins, Way and Sundberg).  Four of those players only saw time on special teams (John Sullivan, Martrell Spaight, Houston Bates and Deshazor Everett).

Special Teamers (34) Special Teamers (cont)
Player Snaps Snap % Player Snaps Snap %
Houston Bates 18 82% Greg Toler 6 27%
Deshazor Everett 13 59% Tress Way 6 27%
Terence Garvin 13 59% Bashaud Breeland 5 23%
Niles Paul 13 59% Cullen Jenkins 5 23%
Martrell Spaight 13 59% Ryan Kerrigan 5 23%
Will Blackmon 10 45% Preston Smith 5 23%
Ryan Grant 10 45% Chris Thompson 5 23%
Matt Ioannidis 9 41% Ziggy Hood 4 18%
Ty Nsekhe 9 41% Arie Koundijo 4 18%
Quinton Dunbar 8 36% Shawn Lauvao 4 18%
Duke Ihenacho 8 36% Spencer Long 4 18%
Will Compton 7 32% Morgan Moses 4 18%
Mason Foster 7 32% John Sullivan 4 18%
Dustin Hopkins 7 32% Kendall Fuller 3 14%
Robert Kelley 7 32% Trent Murphy 2 9%
Ricky Jean Francois 6 27% Josh Norman 2 9%
Nick Sundberg 6 27% Jamison Crowder 1 5%
  • Tress Way- Tress Way only punted twice against the Lions.  One of his punts went 59 yards for a touchback and the other was fair caught at the Detroit 14-yard line.  This was only the third game in Way's career in which none of his punts were returned.
  • Dustin Hopkins- Dustin Hopkins missed a field goal for the second time this season when a 45-yard attempt bounced off of the top of the left upright.  Surprisingly, this was Hopkins' second miss on five career field goals inside of a dome.  His 60% career field goal percentage indoors is quite puzzling when you consider that he has a 93% career hit rate (including playoffs) at outdoor venues.  The miss stung even more because the three points lost on the missed field goal was equal to the Lions' margin of victory in the game.  The Redskins lost Hopkins' only other career dome game.  In that contest, Hopkins missed a field goal in the Georgia Dome against the Falcons.  Atlanta went on to win in overtime, but perhaps the extra frame would not have been necessary if not for Hopkins' miss.  For the third time in his career and the first time this year, all of Hopkins' kickoffs went for touchbacks (3 kickoffs on Sunday).
  • Snaps & Kickoff Coverage- For the first time all season the opposition did not return a single kick or punt against the Redskins, as all three kickoffs went for touchbacks, one of the two punts was a touchback and the other punt was fair caught.  As a result, it was also the first time that a Redskins player did not make a special teams tackle of any kind this season.  That was something new, but Houston Bates finishing with the team lead in special snaps and being followed by Deshazor Everett, Terence Garvin, Niles Paul and Martrell Spaight in that department is extremely old hat at this point.
  • Returns- The Lions' five kickoffs all went for touchbacks, so for the first time this season the Redskins did not return a kickoff.  Detroit punted three times in the game with one punt going out of bounds, one being fair caught and the other being returned for 16 yards.  What was odd was that Jamison Crowder was sent out to return just one of those three punts (the one that went out of bounds); and instead Will Blackmon got the bulk of the return work (one return for 16 yards and one fair catch).  It was only the third time in Crowder's 24-game career (including playoffs) that he did not return a single punt.  Maybe they wanted to preserve Crowder since he was the only receiver on the team that was producing, but I simply don't understand the logic in not using the NFL's leading punt returner (yards and average) as your primary return man.

*All statistics are courtesy of CSN Mid Atlantic, ESPN,, NFL Gamebooks, Pro Football Focus, Pro Football Reference, Real Redskins,, Sharp Football Stats and The Washington Post*