Snaps- Greg Manusky’s defense was on the field for 71 plays and 75 snaps in the regular season opener against the Philadelphia Eagles. The only other time the D ran more plays since the start of last season was in Week 13 when the Eagles had 72 plays against them. That game also ties this one for the most defensive snaps played by the Redskins since Week 15 of 2017 (82 snaps).
All but two of the team’s 25 defenders suited up for the contest and 19 of them (76%) got action on the defensive side of the ball.
Yards & Points- The Washington defense gave up 436 yards (6.1 yards per plays), 22 first downs and 32 points to the Eagles. Over 69% of those yards (69.3#), first downs (72.7%) and points (78.1%) were accrued in the second half of the game. The D has now allowed the opposition offense to gain 400-plus yards in six of the team’s last ten games.
Epic Collapse- Washington raced out to a 17-0 lead before letting the Eagles go on a 32-10 run to close out the game. The loss gave the Redskins their seventh biggest blown lead in franchise history (tied with four other games). The last time they squandered a lead this big or greater was in 1999, when they watched a 21-point margin evaporate against the Cowboys (76-yard Rocket Ismail TD in overtime).
Five of the Skins’ eleven biggest blown leads in team history have come against the Philadelphia Eagles.
3rd Down- Carson Wentz and company absolutely shredded the Burgundy and Gold’s defense on the money down. The Birds converted on 11 of the 17 third downs they faced and dropped 203 yards (11.9-yard average) and 3 touchdowns on the feckless Redskin defense. I’m afraid it gets worse, though.
The Eagles moved the chains on 5-of-9 third-and-long plays (55.6%) and gained 165 yards on those downs (18.3-yard average).
Wentz played a huge role in dissecting the defense on third down, as he completed 12-of-13 passes (92.3%) for 197 yards (15.2 YPA), 9 first downs and 3 touchdowns. He posted a perfect passer rating (158.3) on those throws. Oh, and for good measure, Wentz also moved the sticks with a pair of QB sneaks on the money down.
Red Zone- The Skins D surrendered touchdowns on two of their three red-zone stands in the game (66.7%).
They made stops for a loss of 2 yards and for no gain on their first two plays in the red area, but surrendered a 5-yard TD pass to Alshon Jeffery on the following third down. The Eagles’ next possession lasted just one play before Jeffery scored again, this time on a run. Washington’s D gave up 23 yards of offense on the third and final possession they faced inside the 20, but they managed to keep the Eagles out of the end zone, thanks in large part to a Halapoulivaati Vaitai holding penalty.
The Redskins have allowed their opponents to score touchdowns on at least 60% of their trips to the red zone in five of their last seven games (58.3% conversion rate allowed in those weeks).
Takeaways- Washington did not record a takeaway for just the fifth time since the start of their 2017 campaign (last 33 contests). Since the beginning of last season, the Redskins are 1-8 when they don’t outright win the turnover battle (13.2-point average margin of defeat in those matchups).
QB Pressure- The defense was only able to corral Carson Wentz for one sack and hit him on just four other occasions. What’s probably even worse is that they were only able to generate pressures on 26.8% of Wentz’s dropbacks (11-of-41), and he completed nine of his ten passes on those plays for 141 yards, 7 first downs and 2 touchdowns.
And for those who say they should’ve blitzed more, consider that they rushed extra defenders on 41.5% of Wentz’s drops, which is a pretty healthy number. The Eagles’ top signal caller was less effective on those plays, though; he went 12-for-16 with 70 yards (4.4 YPA), 4 first downs and no touchdowns when blitzed.
Rushing Defense- Carson Wentz, Alshon Jeffery and the Eagles three-head monster at the running back position teamed to up to run the ball 31 times for 123 yards (3.97 YPC), 9 first downs and a touchdown.
Excluding Wentz’s kneel down at the end of the game, the Philly offense posted a 53.3% rushing success rate and picked up first downs on 30% of their rushes. They failed to gain any yardage on 26.7% of their runs, but made up for it by gaining five or more yards on 36.7% of their totes.
Washington’s defense has allowed its opponents to rush for at least 99 yards and pick up six or more first downs in each of the team’s last ten games (142.2 YPG and 4.77 YPC in that span).
These last two sections, in particular, certainly don’t paint a pretty picture for the Redskins’ front seven.
|Defensive Line (6 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Daron Payne *||58||77%|
|Jonathan Allen *||7||9%|
Jonathan Allen- Jonathan Allen played on seven of the team’s first eight defensive snaps before suffering an MCL sprain which knocked him out of the game and will likely sideline him for at least a game or two.
Allen did not record a stat of any kind on those plays; the Eagles averaged 4.29 yards per play and picked up two first downs when he was on the field.
There’s a strong chance that Allen, who has already missed a third of his possible career games (11-of-33), will be absent when the Redskins are tasked with defending two-time rushing champion Ezekiel Elliott next week.
Daron Payne- Payne had a solid, if unspectacular, showing in the opener. He only generated one pressure on his team-high 37 pass-rushing snaps, but it was one of the team’s few QB hits in the game. He batted down a fourth-down Carson Wentz pass on another one of his rushes.
Last year’s first-round pick also recorded 3 tackles, 2 stops and a tackle for loss. The TFL was made when Payne took down Eagles’ rookie Miles Sanders two-yards behind the line of scrimmage on a goal-line play. Payne shut down another Sanders’ run earlier in the contest, with that one going for no gain.
Matt Ioannidis- The Ion Man picked up a lot of the slack with Jonathan Allen out of the lineup. He easily set new career highs in both snaps played and snap percentage (65, 86.7%). His old career marks in those categories were 55 and 77.5% (Week 11 of 2017 at New Orleans).
He registered a hurry and a hit as a pass rusher, which made him the only D-lineman on the team with multiple pressures in the game and just one of two Washington defenders overall who could make that claim. Matty I chipped in with 3 tackles (1 solo) in the running, as well.
I’m not really sure how they came up with this one, but PFF gave him a career-worst 36.7 grade for the game.
Tim Settle- Like Ioannidis, Tim Settle had to step up to fill the hole left by Allen’s absence, too. The second-year tackle topped his previous career highs in snaps and snap rate by 15 snaps and 16.7%.
Settle’s only tackle of the day was a stop in the running game. He also generated a pressure for just the fifth time as a pro when he hurried Carson Wentz on a third down.
His 74.5 PFF grade was the highest such mark posted by a Washington defender in Week 1.
Caleb Brantley- Caleb Brantley suffered an ankle injury that limited him to just 8 defensive snaps in the game. He did not record a traditional stat or generate a pressure on any of those plays.
Pro Football Focus tagged Brantley with a lowly 25.8 rating for his performance, which was both a career low for him and the third-worst grade given to any player in Week 1.
Brantley was reportedly spotted wearing a walking boot, so he might be out for a while.
Treyvon Hester- The third-year Toledo product was inactive for the game. Hester should actually get a bit of playing time though in the next few weeks with both Allen and Brantley on the mend.
He’s posted some fairly adequate numbers for a backup (572 defensive snaps, 32 tackles, 3 TFLs, a sack, 6 QB hits and 21 pressures with the Raiders and Eagles).
T.Y. McGill- McGill’s signing on Tuesday is yet another ominous sign for the health of Jon Allen and Caleb Brantley.
He’s a lot like Hester in that he’s been a backup who has put up some pretty decent numbers despite being limited by a lack of playing time. In fact, McGill’s career numbers, at least from a production standpoint, are far superior to Hester’s: 657 snaps, 23 tackles, 7 TFLs, 5 sacks, 12 QB hits and 40 total pressures.
The Redskins will be the fifth-year pro’s seventh team.
|Outside Linebackers (4 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Ryan Kerrigan *||58||77%|
|Montez Sweat *||51||68%|
Ryan Kerrigan- With Patrick Peterson (suspended) and Glover Quinn (retired) out of the way Kerrigan moved into a tie for fourth (tied with Matthew Stafford) among all players for the most consecutive starts by an active player (129 starts). Philip Rivers and Matt Ryan are the only men in football who have started more straight games on the offensive side of the ball (209 and 148), while Brandon Carr is the only defender who has started in more consecutive contests than Kerrigan has (177 to 129).
Unsurprisingly, the Heartbreak Kid was one of the few players on the Redskins’ defense who did not disappoint in Sunday’s game. He only made one tackle on the day (an assist), but put up plus numbers as a rusher off the edge. His 5 hurries and 2 QB hits were both at least doubled the second-best player on the team in each category. He scored his hits on the defense’s first two snaps of the game.
RyKerr has racked up five or more pressures in three of his last five games.
Montez Sweat- The rookie first rounder out of Mississippi State started opposite Kerrigan and played 51 snaps in his first NFL game.
The athletic freak was limited to just one pressure (a hurry) in his debut, but that might’ve had something to do with going up against probable Hall of Famer Jason Peters (0 pressures allowed) on roughly 80% of pass rushes.
Sweat did, however, rack up 5 tackles and 3 defensive stops against the Eagles, one of which was a 4-yard TFL. He also shut down a running play a yard before the sticks on third down.
Ryan Anderson- Perhaps, Ryan Anderson fooled us again. After recording a sack, a QB hit and 6 total pressures in a fairly promising preseason, Anderson regressed back to normal in this game.
He played 20 snaps, but was shut out on the stat sheet and didn’t register a single pressure. This is amazingly the seventh time this has happened in his 28-game career (25%).
He only appears at all in the play-by-play sheet because he committed a neutral zone infraction that helped the Eagles pick up a first down two snaps later. It was his first penalty since 2017 and the only one committed by a Washington defender in the contest.
Anderson’s 27.6 PFF grade was the second lowest such mark in the game and ranked seventh worst among all defensive players in Week 1.
Cassanova McKinzy- The fourth-year veteran played 19 snaps in what was just his fourth career game. The only statistic he recorded in the entire game was a zero-yard sack of Carson Wentz on a 1st-and-10 late in the second quarter; the Eagles would punt the ball away three plays later.
This was the first time the soon-to-be 27-year-old McKinzy had ever recorded a sack or a pressure in a game.
He also committed the first penalty of his career when he jumped offsides on the Redskins’ onside kick at the end of the game.
|Inside Linebackers (5 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Jon Bostic *||66||88%|
|Cole Holcomb *||51||68%|
|Shaun Dion Hamilton||31||41%|
|Josh Harvey-Clemons||ST Only||N/A|
|Tanner Vallejo||ST Only||N/A|
Jon Bostic- Bostic played on more snaps than any other front-seven player on the team (66), but was only able to muster two assisted tackles in the game, with one of those coming after Carson Wentz’s QB sneak moved the chains on a third-down play. Bostic missed a tackle in the passing game, as well.
He failed to score any pressures and gave up receptions on all three of the targets thrown in his direction (17 yards allowed). He was also the primary defender responsible for Alshon Jeffery’s 5-yard touchdown reception on a goal-to-go third down. Bostic was the lowest graded starter on the defense (49.5).
This kind of performance explains why the former second-round pick is playing on his fifth team in the last five years.
Cole Holcomb- Cole Holcomb starting over Shaun Dion Hamilton was easily the biggest lineup surprise for the Redskins in Week 1.
Holcomb did more than enough to prove the coaches made the right decision. The rookie fifth-rounder out of UNC flashed his freakish athleticism (97.8 percentile SPARQ score) all over the field in what was a stat-stuffing pro debut. He ranked second on the Redskins in solo (7) and total (8) tackles and led the team with 2 TFLs and a whopping 7 defensive stops.
Holcomb is just the fourth player since at least 1999, to record 8 tackles and TFLs in his first game. The Eagles did not pick up a first down on a single one of the snaps Holcomb notched a takedown on and posted an average gain of just 2 yards on those plays (16 yards). He did give up a reception to Jordan Howard, but he made the stop on the play 11 yards shy of the marker. Holcomb also hurried Wentz on one of his five blitzes in the contest.
I’d expect him to hold onto the starting job if he continues to play anything like he did in this one.
Shaun Dion Hamilton- After starting in each of the team’s last four games in 2018, Shaun Dion Hamilton was relegated to a backup role and played just 31 snaps against the Eagles.
SDH basically personally shut down Philly’s third drive of the day. The first and only time he allowed a catch in the game was when he let Nelson Agholor pick up a 7-yard gain on a 2nd-and-8 play before tackling him a yard short of the sticks. Hamilton then tackled Darren Sproles for a 2-yard loss on the ensuing 3rd-and-1 play. That was the Eagles’ only three-and-out in the contest.
In all, Hamilton finished with 3 tackles, marking his lowest total in a game in which he played more than five defensive snaps in.
Josh Harvey-Clemons- This was the third straight Redskins game in which Harvey-Clemons did not get any playing time on defense. You would think they’d at least want to use his coverage skills on third down, but that has not been the case. JHC hasn’t gotten 20 or more defensive snaps in a game since Week 8 of last season (vs. Giants).
Tanner Vallejo- Newly-signed inside backer, Tanner Vallejo, also worked exclusively on special teams. He led the Browns in both solo (6) and total (7) specials tackles last year.
|Cornerbacks (6 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Josh Norman *||75||100%|
|Quinton Dunbar *||64||85%|
|Jimmy Moreland *||56||75%|
Josh Norman- Josh Norman played on 100% of the defensive snaps for the 13th straight contest. Perhaps, it was the number 13 that gave him bad luck, because he definitely did not have a good game on Sunday.
He gave up a team-worst 94 receiving yards and tied for the most receptions (6), first downs (4) and touchdowns (1) allowed by a Washington defender. The 94 yards represents the third-highest total Norman has allowed in his entire 8-year career.
Most of that production was compiled when DeSean Jackson burned him for a 51-yard touchdown on a third down late in the second quarter. Norman was also notably responsible for a 16-yard gainer by Alshon Jeffery on a 3rd-and-7 play late in the game. J-No was at least able to save a little face by defending a pass thrown to Jeffery.
Three of his four tackles were made after catches he allowed. Norman did, however, score just his seventh TFL as a pro when he shut down a Jackson screen 3 yards behind the line of scrimmage and essentially stalled an Eagles’ drive.
Quinton Dunbar- Dunbar played on 85% of the snaps in what was his first regular season appearance since Week 12 of last season. Unfortunately, like Norman, this was far from his best performance.
Dunny, who was targeted a team-high nine times, also allowed the players he was covering to rack up 6 receptions and 4 first downs. Half of the chain movers he was responsible for giving up came on third down. One of the first downs Dunbar surrendered occurred when he tried to jump a pass for an interception; he missed the pick and allowed Zach Ertz to gain 26 yards before being tackled at the Washington 2-yard line. The Eagles scored a touchdown on the very next play. In all, Dunbar’s covers combined to gain 74 yards.
He tried to make up for his woes in coverage with a plus-showing as a tackler. Dunbar’s team-high 8 solo and 9 total tackles were both new career highs. Of his 4 defensive stops (tied for a career high) in the game, three of them came on takedowns he made in front of the sticks on third down. To top it off, he didn’t miss any tackles for just the second time in his last five games.
Jimmy Moreland- The seventh-rounder out of JMU got his first taste of real NFL action when he started in the slot and played 75% of the snaps in place of the injured Fabian Moreau.
The People’s Corner was unable to deliver in his first pro game, as he allowed receptions on all four of the targets thrown into his coverage. The Eagles gained 69 yards, picked up 2 first downs and scored a touchdown on those plays.
Both of the first downs he ceded to the Eagles were made by D-Jax on third down, with the first of those going for a 53-yard bomb that resulted in a touchdown. That was the Eagles’ longest play of the game and it gave them the lead for good.
Moreland finished the game with 3 solo tackles and a stop.
Dominque Rodgers-Cromartie- DRC played 8 defensive snaps on Sunday afternoon. He was the sixth-oldest defensive back and the fourth-oldest cornerback to play in Week 1 (33-154d). The former retiree recorded 3 total tackles in the game (all solo), which was his highest such total since Week 13 of the 2017 season. He missed a tackle, as well.
The old corner was targeted once on his 3 coverage snaps, but didn’t allow a catch on the play.
Greg Stroman- The second-year corner, who played on over 60% of the defensive snaps in the last two games of the 2018 season, was limited to just two such snaps in this one. This was the third time in Stroman’s 16-game career that he’s failed to crack the stat sheet.
In a surprising move, Stroman was waived with an injury designation by the team on Tuesday.
Fabian Moreau- Moreau’s ankle injury kept him out of the game and on the inactive list. This was the first regular season game the third-year corner had ever missed. Unfortunately, it looks like it won’t be the only one.
Simeon Thomas- In what is perhaps a bad omen regarding Moreau’s injury, the team signed Simeon Thomas on Tuesday. The 2018 sixth-round pick by the Browns played his college ball at University of Louisiana at Lafayette and has yet to play in a regular season NFL contest.
|Safeties (4 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Landon Collins *||75||100%|
|Montae Nicholson *||75||100%|
|Deshazor Everett||ST Only||N/A|
|Troy Apke||ST Only||N/A|
Landon Collins- The Redskins’ major free-agent acquisition this past offseason played on all 75 defensive snaps against the Eagles.
Collins recorded 6 solo and 7 total tackles in the game, none of which Philly picked up a first down on. Three of his takedowns were made just a yard before the line to gain, and he made a stop for no gain at the Washington 3-yard line, as well.
However, a big part of the reason Collins made so many tackles was that he gave up a reception on all six passes thrown into his coverage. Four of his seven tackles were made after he had surrendered a catch. On the plus side, the Eagles only gained 29 yards on those plays (4.83 YPR & YPT), just one of which went for a first down. The first down was picked up when Collins allowed Zach Ertz to gain 2 yards on a 3rd-and-1 grab.
Collins also missed a team-high two tackles, with both of them coming in the passing game.
This was far from a disastrous performance, but it’s safe to say that this was not one of Landon Collins’ better games, either.
Montae Nicholson- Nicholson started for the time since Week 8 of last season. In fact, he actually hadn’t even taken a snap on defense since Week 11 (1 snap).
The third-year Michigan State alum was targeted twice on his 39 coverage snaps and only gave up one catch. The problem was, the catch was a 19-yarder on a 3rd-and-9 play that jumpstarted an Eagles’ touchdown drive. Nicholson did make up for it though with a bone-jarring hit on Dallas Goedert that netted him his first pass defense since Week 2 of last season.
Montae finished the game with 5 total tackles (4 solo), with one of those coming a yard shy of the sticks on a third-down play.
Other Safeties- Backup safeties Deshazor Everett and Troy Apke were both limited to special-teams-only roles in the opener.
Everett only didn’t get any snaps with the defense once last season (Week 6 at Carolina); while Apke has still yet to ever get snaps with the D in his three career games.
ALL DEFENSIVE PLAYERS
|All Defensive Players (25 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %||Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Landon Collins *||75||100%||Ryan Anderson||20||27%|
|Montae Nicholson *||75||100%||Cassanova McKinzy||19||25%|
|Josh Norman *||75||100%||Caleb Brantley||8||11%|
|Jon Bostic *||66||88%||Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie||8||11%|
|Matt Ioannidis||65||87%||Jonathan Allen *||7||9%|
|Quinton Dunbar *||64||85%||Greg Stroman||2||3%|
|Ryan Kerrigan *||58||77%||Troy Apke||ST Only||N/A|
|Daron Payne *||58||77%||Deshazor Everett||ST Only||N/A|
|Jimmy Moreland *||56||75%||Josh Harvey-Clemons||ST Only||N/A|
|Cole Holcomb *||51||68%||Tanner Vallejo||ST Only||N/A|
|Montez Sweat *||51||68%||Treyvon Hester||Inactive||N/A|
|Tim Settle||36||48%||Fabian Moreau||Inactive||N/A|
|Shaun Dion Hamilton||31||41%|
|Special Teams Players (30 Players)|
|Player||Snaps||Snap %||Player||Snaps||Snap %|
|Deshazor Everett||24||83%||Tim Settle||10||34%|
|Troy Apke||23||79%||Shaun Dion Hamilton||7||24%|
|Ryan Anderson||22||76%||Cassanova McKinzy||7||24%|
|Josh Harvey-Clemons||19||66%||Jimmy Moreland||7||24%|
|Wendell Smallwood||19||66%||Steven Sims||6||21%|
|Tanner Vallejo||19||66%||Tony Bergstrom||5||17%|
|Greg Stroman||18||62%||Geron Christian||5||17%|
|Cole Holcomb||15||52%||Ereck Flowers||5||17%|
|JP Holtz||14||48%||Morgan Moses||5||17%|
|Kelvin Harmon||13||45%||Daron Payne||5||17%|
|Jeremy Sprinkle||11||38%||Brandon Scherff||5||17%|
|Nick Sundberg||11||38%||Montez Sweat||5||17%|
|Tress Way||11||38%||Montae Nicholson||4||14%|
|Dustin Hopkins||10||34%||Trey Quinn||3||10%|
|Matt Ioannidis||10||34%||Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie||1||3%|
Snaps- The aforementioned backup safeties, Everett and Apke, led the Skins with 24 and 23 specials teams snaps, respectively. Ryan Anderson was right behind them with a career-high 22 specials snaps of his own.
Dustin Hopkins- Hopkins nailed field goals from 41 and 48 yards out and connected on all three of his extra points. This was Hop’s eighth career game with multiple made kicks of over 40 yards.
The field goals were the 100th and 101st of his career, which moved him into a tie with Curt Knight for the third most made field goals by a Redskins kicker. Hopkins is also now just 55 points away from moving past Knight in points scored by a Redskin and into fifth place all time.
All four of Hopkins regular kickoffs went for touchbacks. His onside kick traveled 10 yards before Eagles’ linebacker Nathan Gerry recovered it.
Tress Way- Way’s five punts traveled a total of 272 yards, giving him an average of 54.4 yards per boot. That was the third-highest punting clip of his career and his best mark since all the way back in 2014.
He extended his streak of games without a touchback to 19 games and pinned the Eagles’ offense inside their own 20 on one his kicks. It was the 132nd time one of Way’s punts pinned the opposition offense inside the 20-yard line, which puts him just three more such punts away from passing Matt Turk’s franchise record (134).
Darren Sproles gained 46 yards on his four punt returns in the game (11.5-yard average).
Kick Coverage- Apke and recently released tight end J.P. Holtz teamed up to stop a 12-yard Sproles return at the 38. Long snapper Nick Sundberg got in on the action when he ended the longest punt return of the game (17 yards) at the Philadelphia 47-yard line. Holcomb added to his already impressive stat line with a solo stop of a punt return at the 29. Everett limited Sproles to just a 3-yard gain that ended at the 22-yard line.
Everett, Apke and Tanner Vallejo all missed a tackle on special teams.
Penalties- Nate Kaczor’s unit was responsible for a quarter of the Redskins’ accepted penalties (3-of-12) and penalty yards (24-of-96).
Cassanova McKinzy jumped offsides on Dustin Hopkins’ onside kick, Cole Holcomb’s holding penalty negated a Tress Way punt and Tanner Vallejo was flagged for an illegal block on Trey Quinn’s lone punt return of the day.
Punt Returns- Quinn fielded his first and only punt return at the Washington 19 and returned it 16 yards out to the 35-yard line. Unfortunately, the aforementioned penalty by Vallejo, which was enforced at the 30, shaved 5 yards off of Quinn’s yardage (down to 11 yards) and set the offense up at the 20 instead of the 35.
Quinn fair caught the Eagles’ next two punts at the 14 and 29 yard-lines.
Kickoff Returns- Three of Philly’s six kickoffs went for touchbacks; rookie Steven Sims returned the other three.
He gained just 12 yards on the opening kickoff, which was the first return of his career, before being tackled at the 20-yard line. The only time Sims made it out past the 25 was when he fielded a ball at the 12-yard line and returned it 15 yards before being taken down at the Washington 27. His longest gain of the day was a 19-yarder at the beginning of the fourth quarter; however, he only made it to the 21-yard line before being tackled on the play.
*All statistics are courtesy of ESPN, Football Outsiders, NBC Sports, NFL.com, NFL Gamebooks, Pro Football Focus, Pro Football Reference, Redskins.com and The Washington Post*
What will happen with Greg Manusky?
This poll is closed
He’ll be here for several more years
Fired before November
Fired in the second half of the season
Fired at the end of the year
Not retained by the new head coach in 2020
Way too soon to tell