Redskins Starter Snaps- The Redskins used just three of the players who are listed as starters on their current depth chart in this game. Those players are: Ryan Anderson, Shaun Dion Hamilton and Jon Bostic. It’s also pretty much a lock that either Fabian Moreau or Jimmy Moreland will play on Nickel packages, which basically makes one of them a starter, too.
I don’t really consider what we saw in this game to be the “starting defense” because A) once again, only four starters played, B) two of them were only in for 17 or fewer snaps, and C) none of the team’s top five defenders made it on the field.
Even so, it was still disappointing to see the Browns’ offensive starters carve up the defense the way they did on the game’s opening drive.
Browns Starter Snaps- Cleveland played all but two of their offensive starters, albeit two of their most important ones (Odell Beckham and Jarvis Landry). Seven of those nine who did play were only on the field for the opening drive of the game.
They marched 88 yards down the field and scored a touchdown on the drive, which lasted seven plays and just over two minutes. Their very first play ended with an incomplete pass, but they gained at least 11 yards and picked up a first down on each of their next six plays.
Yards- The Redskins defense gave up 417 total yards on Thursday night. Of those 417 yards, 327 of them came via the pass. The Browns outgained the Skins by 146 yards and averaged almost a full two yards better on a per play basis (6.1 to 4.2).
Points- Cleveland dropped 30 points on Washington, but two of their four touchdowns were actually not scored by the offense (pick six and a punt return). Nevertheless, this still marks the eighth time in the Redskins’ last ten games that they’ve given up 23 or more points.
3rd & 4th Down- The Browns converted on 6 of their 14 third-down tries against Burgundy and Gold’s defense (42.9%). What’s even better is that they weren’t able to convert on either of their two fourth-down attempts in the game.
Red Zone- You probably would’ve guessed otherwise based on the score, but the Browns actually only found the end zone on one of their three trips to the red area. Both of their unsuccessful drives inside Washington 20 were the result of turnovers.
Takeaways- Thanks in large part to the help of a certain young defensive back, the Redskins recovered two fumbles in the contest. Both fumbles were forced inside the Washington 5-yard line.
Penalties- The defense was only responsible for two of the team’s seven accepted penalties and 10 of their 55 penalty yards. However, a 12-yard pass interference was declined because the Browns scored a touchdown on the play.
|Defensive Line (9 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Tim Settle *||27||36%|
|JoJo Wicker *||27||36%|
Jonathan Allen- Jon Allen, the founder of the Alabama Wall, sat out for the second consecutive preseason opener. Last season, he led all Washington defensive linemen in sacks (8.0) and ranked ninth among all interior defenders in that statistic.
Daron Payne- Payne joined his partner in crime on the sideline for this one. The young nose tackle ranked first or second among all rookie interior defenders in the following categories last season: snaps (796), solo tackles (35), total tackles (56), TFLs (6), stops (34), sacks (5) and total pressures (27).
Matt Ioannidis- Matt “Ioan Man” Ioannidis also did not play on Thursday. He finished just behind Allen in sacks last season, with 7.5 of them and actually led all Redskins D-linemen in total pressures (36). The only interior linemen in the entire league who put up a better pass-rushing productivity score in 2018 were all pros Aaron Donald, Chris Jones and Fletcher Cox. I don’t really know if this is a hot take or not, but I think Ioannidis might be the best pass rusher on Washington’s defensive line.
Rankings debates aside, Matty I’s new contract should keep him, Allen, Payne and Tim Settle together for at least the next three seasons.
Caleb Brantley- The walk-year lineman didn’t play because of a mild Lisfranc injury. Brantley has only played 279 career snaps in the regular season, but that number certainly figures to grow this year.
There is still a good deal of potential here. Don’t forget that there was a time when some people thought of Brantley as a late first or early second-round pick.
Tim Settle- Tim Settle started, saw action on 27 defensive snaps and acquitted himself quite nicely when he was out there. The VA Tech alum scored two pressures on Thursday, including a QB hit on a third down. Settle also made 2 tackles on the day, with one of them going for a 1-yard TFL on a 2nd-and-10 Cleveland rushing play.
He did play in all 16 games last season, but he played 6 or fewer defensive snaps in half of those contests. All indications are that those numbers will rise sharply in 2019.
JoJo Wicker- Wicker started next to Settle and also played 27 snaps. The 2018 UDFA registered one pressure (a hurry) and recorded an assisted tackle which bottled up a Browns’ run from the Washington 2-yard line (1-yard gain).
Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t yet fully understand why Wicker has been on several 53-man roster projections. He’s done nothing in the actual league since going undrafted last Spring, and he’s a horrible athlete (4th percentile SPARQ and 0.93 RAS).
However, Wicker was fairly productive in college (102 tackles, 32 TFLs, 12.5 sacks, 4 PDs and 4 forced fumbles at Arizona State), so perhaps that’s at least part of the reason behind the optimism. It just kind of feels like people are penciling him in simply because 3-4 teams typically carry more than five defensive linemen.
Jonathan Bonner- The rookie lineman out of Notre Dame led all Washington defensive linemen with 42 defensive snaps played against the Browns. He recorded a half sack on the final drive of the first half and assisted on a tackle for no gain in the running game that was negated by a Browns’ holding penalty.
Bonner is kind of the opposite of Wicker in that he’s above average athletically, but was a total zero in terms of college production (28 tackles, 4 TFLs, 2 sacks, 2 PDs and 1 forced fumble in four years).
Austin Maloata- The Samoan D-lineman played 22 snaps, generated a hurry on one of his 14 pass-rushing snaps and assisted on a key fourth-down tackle that stopped a David Blough QB scramble 3 yards short of the line to gain.
Maloata recorded just 6.5 TFLs and 2.5 sacks in his four college seasons (3 at Oregon and 1 at Austin Peay).
Ryan Bee- Bee got 37 snaps of action and produced a pretty solid stat line. His 4 solo and 5 total tackles both ranked third on the team. One of those tackles came when he teamed up with Maloata to tackle QB David Blough on fourth down and another one went for a sack.
The sack was one of his two pressures in the contest. Bee was the only defender on the roster who recorded more than half a sack (1.0). He made the play on the final snap of the first half. His other pressure in the game was a QB hit.
Bee, like Wicker, filled up the stat sheet in college (200 tackles, 29.5 TFLs, 18 sacks, 7 PDs and 2 forced fumbles at Marshall). Perhaps, we just witnessed the beginning of what will go down as another productive chapter in his football career.
|Outside Linebackers (9 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Ryan Anderson *||35||47%|
|Cassanova McKinzy *||29||39%|
Ryan Kerrigan- Kerrigan sat out the preseason opener for the second straight year. He’s played a total of 6 defensive snaps over the team’s last five preseason openers.
RyKerr is just 7 sacks away (84.5) from officially passing Dexter Manley (91 sacks) to become the team’s all-time sack leader. Kerrigan has recorded at least 7.5 sacks in each of his last 11 seasons of organized football (8 NFL and 3 college).
Unofficially, and in reality, he actually needs 13.0 sacks to match Manley’s total (97.5 sacks unofficially). That’s okay, though; Kerrigan notched 13 or more sacks in both of his last two seasons.
Montez Sweat- The number 26 pick in the draft didn’t play because of a minor calf injury.
Sweat is one of the most athletic players in the NFL. I’ll save some of my evidence on the matter for future articles, but for now I’ll just tell you how his composite athletic scores compare to some other pass rushers in the league. Only nine edge players in the last six years have posted better SPARQ or RAS scores than Sweat did (144.8 and 9.9), and four of them are Myles Garrett, Vic Beasley, T.J. Watt and Khalil Mack.
Jordan Brailford- Brailford was sidelined because of a groin injury. The seventh-round pick led the Big 12 in sacks last year (10.0) and made first team all-conference.
Ryan Anderson- Ryan Anderson started at ROLB and played 35 snaps. Anderson had a very solid performance, as he posted the following stat line: 2 tackles, a 1-yard TFL, a QB hit, a half sack and a team-high 4 total pressures. This was just the third sack Anderson has recorded in his 33 career games (including preseason).
On the downside, he did miss a tackle and gave up a 13-yard reception to Antonio Callaway.
Cassanova McKinzy- The fourth-year vet’s impressive offseason continued, as he tied Anderson with a team-best 4 pressures and led all defenders in the game with 2 QB hits. Both plays he scored hits on ended up being unsuccessful for the Browns’ offense (incomplete on a first down and short of the sticks on a third down). He also recovered a fumble at the Washington 2-yard line on fourth down and returned it for 4 yards.
The big mark against McKinzy in this one is that he missed a team-high two tackles, one of which went for a 12-yard Nick Chubb first down run instead of a TFL like it should have been. Again, missed tackles aside, McKinzy showed out well on Thursday night.
McKinzy has only played a grand total of 74 regular season snaps, but it looks like that will be increasing this year.
Andrew Ankrah- The Maryland native and James Madison grad played 26 snaps in the game. He failed to generate any pressure on any of his 14 rushes, but he did assist on a 3-yard tackle for loss.
Ankrah notched 3 sacks and a forced fumble in the first and only season of AAF football.
Marcus Smith- The Philadelphia drafted first-round bust was out there for 23 snaps, but failed to score any pressures. It’s been almost two years since Smith has recorded a single QB pressure of any kind (including preseason).
Smith did at least assist on one tackle (4-yard rush) against the Browns, but he was also called for an offsides penalty.
Myles Humphrey- The second-year edge rusher out of Shepherd University didn’t crack the box score on defense despite tying Anderson for the most snaps played by a Redskins outside backer (35). He was at least able to register one pressure (a hurry) on his 22 snaps as a pass rusher.
Garrett Sickels- Sickels, who was signed on August 1st, did not play in the game and was waived yesterday.
|Inside Linebackers (6 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Shaun Dion Hamilton *||17||23%|
|Jon Bostic *||10||14%|
John Bostic- The sixth-year journeyman started, but was only out there for 10 snaps, which was the lowest such total by any of the Washington defenders who actually played in the game.
He did little to impress when he was out there; in fact, he did just the opposite. Somehow, on just those 10 plays, he missed a pair of tackles and allowed the two targets thrown his way to be caught for first downs of 14 and 11 yards.
And on top of that, Bostic did not record a traditional statistic of any kind. His 25.9 PFF grade ranked dead last among all defenders who played in the game. That was also the second-worst mark posted by all of the 200 players who took snaps as an off-ball linebacker this week.
Shaun Dion Hamilton- Hamilton started alongside Bostic and played 17 snaps before exiting with a chest injury. The injury is a minor one, but it may be enough to keep him out of the second preseason game.
Like Bostic, SDH was unable to record any statistics. The only noteworthy thing he really did was to allow a 14-yard reception to Donte Hilliard and to miss a tackle on the play. Bostic was the only defender who had a worse PFF grade than Hamilton did (36.2).
Josh Harvey-Clemons- Josh Harvey-Clemons led all Redskins linebackers with 39 snaps played on Thursday night. He made 2 tackles (1 solo), both of which came four or more yards away from the line to gain.
JHC only allowed one reception (6 yards) on his 21 coverage snaps and defended two passes, with the first of those PDs coming on third down.
The former defensive back ranked in the top ten among off-ball linebackers in passer rating against (63.2, 3rd) and yards per coverage snap (0.65, 9th) allowed last season.
Cole Holcomb- The Redskins’ fifth-round pick replaced the injured Shaun Dion Hamilton and saw 33 snaps of action.
He recorded 4 total tackles (3 solo), with the biggest of those coming when he ran down Rashard Higgins to shut down a 38-yard gain at the Washington 2-yard line. It ended up being a touchdown-saving tackle, as Cleveland turned the ball over three plays later.
Unfortunately, Holcomb was not perfect in his NFL debut. He gave up 2 first-down receptions that gained a combined total of 44 yards.
Expect to see Holcomb make his fair share of tackles this season if he gets the chance to. The former Tar Heel averaged 104 tackles over his last three seasons at North Carolina.
B.J. Blunt- The rookie undrafted free agent out of McNeese State made played 17 snaps against the Browns. He assisted on a 3-yard TFL and did not surrender a catch the only time he was targeted.
He racked up 102 tackles and 11 sacks in his final college season. He will have to regain his stat-stuffing form this August if he hopes to sneak his way onto the Redskins’ 53-man roster.
Marquis Flowers- Flowers, who is now on his third different team in as many years, was on the field for 31 defensive snaps. He made 4 total tackles (2) solo and had what would’ve been a fifth takedown get negated by a penalty; perhaps that’s karma though, because his offsides infraction negated a QB hit by another player. Flowers defended the only pass thrown his way in coverage.
Darrell Williams- The rookie UDFA out of Auburn was signed to the team yesterday. He never recorded more than 37 tackles and 2 PDs in his four years in college.
|Cornerbacks (10 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Jimmy Moreland *||49||66%|
|Fabian Moreau *||24||32%|
|Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie *||23||31%|
Josh Norman- Norman predictably did not play in the game. However, the Summer is nearly over which means his focus is about to shift away from things like dancing with the stars or running with the bulls and towards trying to defend against some of the best athletes in the world.
It’s shaping up to be a big year for the highly-paid 31-year-old corner, and possibly his last one in D.C. if he can’t find a way to bounce back from what was one of his worst seasons in the following statistics: receiving yards allowed (644, 2nd worst), touchdowns allowed (8, worst), passer rating against (114.2, 2nd worst) and yards per coverage snap allowed (1.06, worst since 2013).
Quinton Dunbar- Quinton Dunbar sat this one out because he’s now a locked in starter and Gruden decided not to play almost every player who fits that description.
Dunny started out hot last season, as the then fourth-year corner set or matched career highs in starts, tackles, pass defenses and interceptions by Week 9. Unfortunately, an injured nerve limited QD to just one game between Weeks 11 and 17. He now looks to be fully healthy and ready to continue where he left off last year.
Adonis Alexander- Alexander would’ve almost certainly suited up for this one had it not been for a quad injury that he recently suffered. The 2018 supplemental draft pick is in danger of missing the cut for the final roster if he can’t get healthy and produce in at least a couple of games this August. Alexander appeared in nine games last season, but only played on a total 11 defensive snaps in those contests.
Greg Stroman- Stroman was sidelined with a mild groin injury. Like fellow Virginia Tech corner Alexander, he will need to get on the field and step up if he hopes to make the club. However, unlike Alexander, Stroman actually played a lot on defense in 2018; he just struggled when he was out there. The former seventh-round pick gave up 460 yards and 3 touchdowns on his 260 coverage snaps (1.77 yards per snap allowed).
Fabian Moreau- Moreau was the one corner with actual experience with the team who played in Cleveland. He started and saw the field on 24 snaps, with 19 of them coming from the slot.
He made 2 tackles (1 solo) and generated a pressure on his lone pass-rushing snap (a hurry), but also gave up 2 receptions for 23 yards and a first down on 15 coverage snaps and 2 targets.
Dominique Rodgers-Cromatrie- The 33-year-old vet drew the start and was out there for 23 defensive snaps.
DRC did not have his best day in coverage though, especially on the opening drive of the game. In total, he was targeted four times and allowed 2 receptions for 40 yards, 2 first downs and a touchdown. Both catches he gave up, including a 24-yard touchdown, came on the first drive of the night.
Rodgers-Cromartie did record 3 solo tackles, but only one of them came within 10 yards of the line of scrimmage (3-yard gain on 1st-and-10).
DRC set new career lows last season in games and snaps played (7 and 147).
Jimmy Moreland- The student athlete who intercepted 18 passes and racked up a whopping 63 PDs in college, the rookie who picked off seven balls in offseason workouts, the player who stole the show in his first ever NFL game; they are all one in the same: The People’s Corner, Jimmy F’n Moreland.
Moreland recorded a game-high 3 pass defenses, with two of them coming on back-to-back plays in the Washington end zone. The Browns tried to punch the ball in from a yard out on the following play, but Moreland made the tackle at the 2-yard line and forced Browns’ running back Dontrell Hilliard to fumble. The Redskins recovered the fumble and Moreland’s personal goal-line stand was complete.
Jimmy wasn’t done yet, though. Moreland was getting beaten like a drum by former JMU teammate Ishmael Hyman on an early third quarter drive, but that certainly didn’t last forever. Hyman had just picked up his fourth first-down reception against Moreland on the drive and was racing towards the end zone until Moreland caught up to him and stripped him of the ball at the 6-yard line. That fumble would also be recovered by the defense. The pair of forced fumbles makes Moreland just the third Redskin in at least the last ten years to force multiple fumbles in a single game as a rookie (Preston Smith and Ryan Kerrigan).
This was by no means a perfect performance from the rookie corner, though. He did record game highs in total (6) and solo (5) tackles, but a lot of that was because he gave up 70 receiving yards and game high reception (6) and first down (4) totals on 9 targets (another high). Four of his six tackles came after receptions he allowed.
Mistakes aside, this was a terrific overall performance for Jimmy Moreland, especially considering that this was his first game in the pros.
D.J. White- The former Chiefs and Colts corner got 48 snaps of work against the Browns. He allowed 2-of-3 targets to be caught but only gave up a total of 14 yards on the plays (0 first downs). He also notched 3 solo takedowns.
This was the first game for the former sixth-round pick in nearly a year.
Deion Harris- Harris tied a team-high with 50 defensive snaps, but the rookie UDFA had a pretty poor performance, especially in coverage. He allowed all four targets thrown his way to be caught for 72 yards (team worst), 3 first downs and a touchdown. He was flagged for pass inference on the TD he gave up, but the penalty was obviously declined.
All three of his tackles came on receptions he allowed, which kind of diminishes most of their value. His only saving grace in this regard is that he didn’t miss any tackles and only let those plays gain 10 yards after the catch.
Harris did have one nice play, but even in this case it could’ve been a lot better. He scored a PD on the Redskins’ side of the field, but he should’ve caught the pass. He looked to have a fairly clear path on the return, so he may have well squandered what could’ve been a pick-six opportunity.
Dejuan Neal- Neal was signed to the roster yesterday. He is yet another Maryland native and Shepherd University alum. Neal finished his college career with 104 tackles, 4.5 TFLs, 14 PDs, 3 interceptions, a forced fumble and 3 fumble recoveries.
|Safeties (6 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Troy Apke *||25||34%|
|Deshazor Everett *||24||32%|
Landon Collins- Washington’s top acquisition in free agency did not suit up for the preseason opener.
The team signed Collins to what was the biggest contract given to a safety in league history. The hope is that he can bounce back from a down season in 2018 (career lows in tackles, pressures, pass defenses and interceptions) and recapture some of the magic he had in 2016 when he was a first-team all-pro (125 tackles, 4 sacks, 13 pass defenses and 5 interceptions).
Montae Nicholson- Nicholson, who has reclaimed his starting spot at free safety, didn’t play either. The Michigan State product started seven games and played on 462 snaps before being benched for mid-season trade pickup, HaHa Clinton-Dix. He finished the year with zero turnovers forced and just one pass defense.
Troy Apke- The 2018 fourth-round pick made his first appearance since Week 8 of last season. Injuries limited him to just 22 total snaps last year, all of which came on special teams.
Apke started and played 25 snaps on Thursday, with 13 of those coming as a free safety. He made 3 tackles in the game (2 solo), including a stop at the Washington 1-yard line that kept running back Dontrell Hilliard out of the end zone.
The lone pass thrown into Apke’s coverage fell incomplete. Rashard Higgins was the intended target. Apke’s showing would’ve looked a lot better had he not just narrowly missed defending a touchdown pass thrown to Higgins on the Browns’ first drive (DRC was the primary defender on the play).
Deshazor Everett- The fifth-year safety started and played 24 snaps against the Browns. Everett was targeted twice and he made a TFL for a one-yard loss on the only reception he gave up. He finished the game with 4 total tackles (3 solo). Shaze did, however, miss a tackle on Rashard Higgins, but was luckily bailed out by a Cole Holcomb touchdown-saving tackle on the play.
He nearly picked off a pass close to midfield, but couldn’t hang on and had to just settle for a pass defense.
Jeremy Reaves- The 2019 UDFA who played in two games for the Skins last year, was also on the field for a team-most 50 defensive snaps against the Browns. He tied Jimmy Moreland for both the most solo (5) and total tackles (1) in the game, as well. Three of those tackles were counted as stops (another team-best mark), one of which shut down a 3rd-and-4 Cleveland running play for no gain. He tackled tight end Pharaoh Brown 3 yards shy of the line to gain on a 3rd-and-11 pass, as well.
The 8-yard reception to Brown was the only reception Reaves allowed over the course of his 30 coverage snaps (targeted twice). He defended, and very nearly picked off, a deep pass thrown to Brown, too.
Reaves biggest play of the night was a fumble recovery at Washington’s own 2-yard line that he returned 27 yards out to the 29.
He earned a 90.1 PFF grade for the performance, which was easily the best such mark of his career and by any Redskins player in this game.
JoJo McIntosh- Don’t ask me how there is two dudes named JoJo on the same team, because I can’t tell you. Anyways, McIntosh tied Reaves and Harris with a team-high 50 defensive snaps played.
The rookie out of Washington was not targeted in the passing game, but did record a pair of tackles, one of which held a quarterback scramble to a gain of just three on a 1st-and-10 play.
ALL DEFENSIVE PLAYERS
|All Defensive Players (40 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %||Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Deion Harris||50||68%||Marcus Smith||23||31%|
|JoJo McIntosh||50||68%||Austin Maloata||22||30%|
|Jeremy Reaves||50||68%||Ashton Lampkin||20||27%|
|Jimmy Moreland *||49||66%||B.J. Blunt||17||23%|
|D.J. White||48||65%||Shaun Dion Hamilton *||17||23%|
|Jonathan Bonner||42||57%||Jon Bostic *||10||14%|
|Josh Harvey-Clemons||39||53%||Adonis Alexander||DNP||N/A|
|Ryan Bee||37||50%||Jonathan Allen||DNP||N/A|
|Ryan Anderson *||35||47%||Jordan Brailford||DNP||N/A|
|Myles Humphrey||35||47%||Caleb Brantley||DNP||N/A|
|Cole Holcomb||33||45%||Landon Collins||DNP||N/A|
|Marquis Flowers||31||42%||Quinton Dunbar||DNP||N/A|
|Cassanova McKinzy *||29||39%||Matt Ioannidis||DNP||N/A|
|Tim Settle *||27||36%||Ryan Kerrigan||DNP||N/A|
|JoJo Wicker *||27||36%||Montae Nicholson||DNP||N/A|
|Andrew Ankrah||26||35%||Josh Norman||DNP||N/A|
|Troy Apke *||25||34%||Daron Payne||DNP||N/A|
|Deshazor Everett *||24||32%||Garrett Sickels||DNP||N/A|
|Fabian Moreau *||24||32%||Greg Stroman||DNP||N/A|
|Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie *||23||31%||Montez Sweat||DNP||N/A|
|Special Teams Players (48 Players)|
|Player||Snaps||Snap %||Player||Snaps||Snap %|
|Marquis Flowers||14||54%||Jimmy Moreland||5||19%|
|Jehu Chesson||13||50%||Nick Sundberg||5||19%|
|Matt Flanagan||13||50%||D.J. White||5||19%|
|Deion Harris||13||50%||Ryan Anderson||4||15%|
|Jeremy Reaves||13||50%||Jonathan Bonner||4||15%|
|Troy Apke||12||46%||Austin Maloata||4||15%|
|B.J. Blunt||11||42%||Cassanova McKinzy||4||15%|
|Josh Harvey-Clemons||11||42%||Cam Sims||4||15%|
|Cole Holcomb||11||42%||Donald Parham||3||12%|
|JoJo McIntosh||11||42%||Tony Bergstrom||2||8%|
|Myles Humphrey||10||38%||Geron Christian||2||8%|
|Robert Davis||9||35%||Ereck Flowers||2||8%|
|Kelvin Harmon||9||35%||Zac Kerin||2||8%|
|Shaun Wilson||9||35%||Ashton Lampkin||2||8%|
|Dustin Hopkins||8||31%||Wes Martin||2||8%|
|Jeremy Sprinkle||8||31%||Ross Pierschbacher||2||8%|
|Tress Way||8||31%||Jon Bostic||1||4%|
|J.P. Holtz||7||27%||Shaun Dion Hamilton||1||4%|
|Byron Marshall||7||27%||Fabian Moreau||1||4%|
|Samaje Perine||7||27%||Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie||1||4%|
|Andrew Ankrah||6||23%||Tim Settle||1||4%|
|Craig Reynolds||6||23%||Steven Sims||1||4%|
|Ryan Bee||5||19%||Marcus Smith||1||4%|
|Deshazor Everett||5||19%||JoJo Wicker||1||4%|
Snaps- New special teams coordinator Nate Kaczor used 48 players over the course of the Redskins’ 26 teams snaps. Marquis Flowers led the way with 14 specials snaps just ahead of Jehu Chesson, Matt Flanagan, Deion Harris and Jeremy Reaves, who each took 13 snaps on the unit.
Dustin Hopkins- Dustin Hopkins hit on a 35-yard field goal and connected on his lone extra point. Hopkins’ opening kickoff of the game was returned 21 yards out to the 22, while both of his other kickoffs on the night went for touchbacks.
Tress Way- Way punted the ball six times for a total of 309 yards (51.5 average). His net average, however, was just 29.0 yards, because the Browns racked up 115 punt return yards in the game, with 86 of those coming on a punt that was returned for a touchdown by Damon Sheehy-Guiseppi.
It was the second one of Way’s punts that had been returned for a touchdown since Week 14 of the 2017 season (Week 15 of 2018 at Jacksonville). The aforementioned 115 yards represented the highest return yardage total ever posted off of Way’s punts in a single game.
And to top it all off, the Redskins’ punter put a ball in the end zone for a touchback for the first time since Week 3 of the 2018 preseason. This was also just his second game since Week 3 of the 2017 preseason, in which he failed to pin the opposing offense inside their own 20-yard line at least once (Week 16 of last year at Tennessee).
Everything that went wrong for the punting unit wasn’t all of Way’s fault, but this was still far from his best day at the office.
Kick Coverage- As was just discussed in Tress Way’s section, the punt coverage team gave up a whopping 115 yards and a touchdown (86 yards) on four returns (28.8 average). Several players missed tackles on the TD return.
Cams Sims made his first NFL tackle when he stopped a punt return at the 35 after a gain of nine. Jehu Chesson ended an 8-yard return at the 45-yard line and downed the next Washington punt at the Cleveland 36. Finally, Myles Humphrey and Robert Davis teamed up to shut down a 12-yard gainer at the 36. You may have picked up on the fact that every single one of the Browns’ punt returns made it out to at least the 35-yard line, which simply put, is not good.
Kickoff Returns- Byron Marshall returned the first three kickoffs for gains of 23, 10 and 18 yards (17-yard average), but touchbacks would’ve been preferable in each case, as he never made it out past the 21-yard line.
Shaun Wilson took over kickoff return duties in the second half. He returned the opening kickoff of the half 15 yards before being taken down at the 20 and watched as the Browns’ last two kickoffs of the night sailed into the back of the end zone for touchbacks.
Punt Returns- Wilson was back deep to return the first three Cleveland punts of the night. He fair caught the first two at the 16 and 10-yard lines and returned the third punt 8 yards out to the 23. Steven Sims was put in for the last punt, but the ball landed out of bounds at the 26-yard line.
*All statistics are courtesy of ESPN, The Football Database, NBC Sports, NFL.com, NFL Gamebooks, Pro Football Focus, Pro Football Reference, Redskins.com, Team Rankings and The Washington Post*
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