Five ways the Washington football team can make the playoffs
By Ian Cummings
No. 5 – The pass rush is as menacing as advertised
The two best ways to ensure a win in the NFL? Pass, and disrupt the pass. Running still has a place in the modern NFL, but it’s a passing league now. Teams pass to get ahead, and the team that can’t pass is the team that falls behind, and stays behind.
The Washington football team has a chance, with this pass rushing unit, to seriously tip the scales and force the issue on a season of contention. With five former first-round picks making up the core of their defensive line group, the Washington football team legitimately has a case for having the best defensive front in football.
This, of course, is something a lot of people have been saying this offseason, and as good as it might sound to keep saying that, and be able to prove it on paper, it still needs to come to fruition on the football field. The pass rush unit needs to be as good as advertised. Otherwise, it won’t be able to will the defense to dominance.
Realistically, it appears as though it’ll be a good unit, at the very least. Both the interior line and the edge rushing core have healthy rotations, in which players can stay fresh and provide quality play whenever they see the field.
Matt Ioannidis is a fearsome interior pass rusher, complimented by Jonathan Allen and Daron Payne, who have 21.0 combined sacks over the past two years. And Chase Young and Montez Sweat form the most athletic edge duo in the country, backed up by steely veteran Ryan Kerrigan, who should thrive as a pure defensive end, in a role that conserves his ability and slows his regression.
It all seems to be adding up for this group. But no one can celebrate until the 2020 production is there to prove it. If it is there, then that’s one step in the right direction for a team looking to compete ahead of schedule.