Minus big runs, Redskins' 'D' still doesn't add up

Minus big runs, Redskins' 'D' still doesn't add up
November 10, 2011, 10:21 pm
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The Redskins have given up an average of 161 yards per game during the teams four-game losing streak. For the last couple of weeks, Jim Haslett has pointed to big plays given up here and there for the big rushing yardage totals.Its a missed tackle here and a missed assignment there, the defensive coordinator said today. Those things happen.A look at the numbers, however, indicates the Redskins really have consistently struggled to stop the run.Lets say you took away the biggest rushing play each game. Against the Eagles, that would be a 31-yard Michael Vick run. The big run in the Carolina game was 29 yards by Jonathan Stewart. Fred Jacksons 43-yard run was the longest for the Bills, and last week it was a 27-yard Frank Gore run.If you take out those runs, the Redskins still have given up 128 rushing yards per game over the last four weeks. Through Week 9, giving up that many yards per game would have your run defense ranked 26th in the NFL.Haslett did bring up a valid point today when he mentioned the number of rushing attempts per game against the Redskins the last four weeks. They have had to defend 38, 37, 32 and 32 runs in the last four games.Part of this has to do with the fact that, with the offense struggling, the Redskins cant build a lead. Opponents dont have to pass, and they are content to pound the ball on the ground.Of course, they also could be rushing a lot because its working. Teams have been averaging 4.6 yards per carry against the Redskins in the last four games, so why not keep it on the ground?