Washington Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan more than likely needs to win out like last season in order to get his team back to the playoffs. And knowing his tendencies, he probably won’t make any of these moves. But here are four changes he might consider, that could possibly help turn things around.
4. Make a change at Right Guard - Redskins right guard Chris Chester has been good in run blocking, but has been dominated lately in pass protection. According to Pro Football Focus, Chester leads the team in QB hurries with 27, nearly twice as many as the next closest linemen. Chester is also the lowest rated of all the Redskins starters on offense.
The running game probably wouldn’t be affected a whole lot with Chester out of the lineup, but pass protection couldn’t get much worse. The four sacks on quarterback Robert Griffin III had an impact on the Redskins loss to the Vikings. And a lot of it was just Redskins linemen getting beaten one on one. Maybe it’s time for someone else to get a shot at a start at right guard
3. Attack more on Defense - Defensive coordinator Jim Haslett has been known to blitz on occasion, but he typically does so with defensive backs and his inside linebackers, particularly Perry Riley. You don’t see much stunting being done with the three defensive linemen. More stunting could allow the D-line to become more active in pass rushing.
2. Move Barry Cofield to Defensive End – Playing Cofield at nose tackle may be holding him back. Why not move him to defensive end and let him freelance some? He appears to be athletic enough to do it, and that might free up Brian Orakpo more as a pass rusher, as he’s being double teamed a lot, which stifles his pass rush skills.
1. Fire Jim Haslett - Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan appears tied to the hip with defensive coordinator Jim Haslett. But he may want to consider going in another direction at defensive coordinator while he has the chance. Something has got to give. At this point, I don’t see what harm could be done with making a change.
Defensive backs coach Raheem Morris seems like the best candidate from the staff to take over. Firing a coordinator is risky, but it can also pay dividends as we saw last season with the Baltimore Ravens, when head coach John Harbaugh fired offensive coordinator Cam Cameron for Jim Caldwell. A new set of eyes might jump-start the defense.