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Redskins Mid-Season Report Card - Grading the Defense

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Redskins Defensive Grade – Mid-season.  Defensive Grade analysis for the Washington Redskins through the first half of the 2013 season.

Defensive Line:  The top performer on the defensive line has been nose tackle Barry Cofield.  However, I think he’s playing out of position, and should be at defensive end.  The other defensive ends Steven Bowen and Kedric Golston have been OK, but lack the play making and pass rush ability to take pressure off the outside linebackers.  Jarvis Jenkins has recently returned from suspension, but is still underwhelming as a high round draft pick.      Defensive Line grade –  D+

Linebackers:  Outside Linebackers Ryan Kerrigan and Brian Orakpo may be having their best season together as a tandem.  Kerrigan is leading the team in sacks, and Orakpo is displaying the all around ability of a complete linebacker.  But their good performance this season is being neutralized by mediocrity coming from the inside linebackers.  Perry Riley has played solidly at times, but London Fletcher may be having the worst season of his illustrious career.   Linebackers grade – D+

Defensive Backs:  In contrast to London Fletcher, cornerback DeAngelo Hall is having one of the best seasons of his career.  Even though the Redskins defense hasn’t played well as a whole, Hall has stood out in coverage, and has been a leader.  Rookie David Amerson is starting to come into his own, and the Redskins are benefitting from his play.

Safety Brandon Meriweather has struggled with personal fouls and illegal hits, and while Reed Doughty has been solid as a starter, the Redskins could use another play maker at safety.  Rookie Bacarri Rambo has shown some potential, but is still learning.  Defensive Backs grade – C

Defensive Grade:  D+ – The entire defense has been plagued by missed tackles and inconsistency.  I don’t think defensive coordinator Jim Haslett’s scheme is very sound, and this may be hindering the unit as well.

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