Where did the sacks go?

Where did the sacks go?
October 13, 2012, 11:45 am

As noted here earlier this week, the 2012 Redskins have allowed more passing yards through their first five games than they have in their history. Although the secondary carries much of the blame, they haven’t been getting much help in terms of pass rush.

The Redskins have only eight sacks through their first five games. Since they started keeping sacks as an official statistic in 1982, only seven editions of the Redskins have had fewer sacks than this one at this point in the season.

Ryan Kerrigan has 3.5 sacks, the only player on the team with more than one. Last year the defensive line contributed 18 sacks. Against the Falcons, Barry Cofield picked up the line’s first sack of the season.

Certainly the losses of Brian Orakpo (9 sacks last year) and Adam Carriker (5.5) to injury haven’t helped things. But their replacements haven’t performed at nearly a fraction of the levels of the players they are replacing. End Jarvis Jenkins has no sacks, linebacker Rob Jackson has none, and linebacker Chris Wilson has a half.

Wilson’s inability to get pressure is particularly puzzling. He is the one in there in nickel situations and he is one the team because of his supposed ability to get to the quarterback.

The pass rush problems are a big factor in the pass defense problems but consider that the 2005 team had only five sacks through the first give games but had allowed only 891 passing yards, a little more than half of what the current team has allowed.

In other words, it takes a total team effort to have a pass defense this leaky. Either the front or back end is going to have to step up and get it done.