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Film Study: Getting a Look at the Redskins Young Interior Offensive Linemen

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NFL: Washington Redskins-Rookie Minicamp Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

A few people have asked me how our young offensive linemen, mainy rookies Wes Martin and Ross Pierschbacher have been doing this preseason. My response to many has been “it’s a mixed bag so far”, with some good and some bad reps. That’s to be expected however, as many rookies go through a learning curve and some growing pains when they enter the league. Most of these come from getting used to the speed of the game, and understanding what defenses are trying to do within the front seven.

Although the game against the Falcons saw our rookies working against Atlanta’s reserves, the follow cut-ups will hopefully answer some fan’s questions about the preparedness of some of our young linemen - including new-comer Hugh Thornton.


Here you get a good look at left guard Wes Martin down by the goalline. The one thing I have noticed is he often stays on his man and finishes his blocks. Here you see that, as it’s his finishing ability that helps push Perine in for the touchdown.

This cut-up shows Martin pulling from his left guard spot. Notice how he works under control to the second level, finds his target and destroys him. VERY nice play here by the rookie!

This clip shows Martin is pass-pro. The one thing I’d like to see is him extend those arms to keep the defender away from his body. Overall, not a bad job here.

In this example, you see Martin play with a solid base, extend those arms, and bury his man in pass protection. Nice work on this rep!

The young interior offensive line, with Martin at LG, Pierschbacher at C and Thornton at RG give Haskins a clean pocket to operate in. You can see Piers allows his man to win the hand-battle but stays with him with decent footwork and rides him out of Haskins way.

This is an EXCEPTIONAL job by Martin of recognizing the stunt, handing his man off, and picking up the twisting defender inside!

Ross Pierschbacher is still a developmental prospect on the interior, but here you see some of that potential as he works to get to the second level and seals the LB.

Hugh Thornton is a very powerful inside presence. I noticed a few times in Thursday’s game the push he generated, and how he plays THROUGH the whistle.

Another example of the PUSH I was talking about with right guard Hugh Thornton. I don’t quite know why Parris isn’t getting off that block and getting up to the second level though - Thornton clearly has his man controlled.

Now, here is some of the bad by Wes Martin. He shows slow feet and poor recognition picking up this blitz. Good thing is these are all correctable mistakes and will come as he sees more live game action.

Both Pierschbacher and Martin fail to control one defender. Ross loses the hand battle and Wes is in no position to help. Martin almost grabs the backside of the DT, but is smart enough not to hold on. That defender is the one who bats down the pass.


And just for fun!

This is what we have to look forward to in the future!!!!!