Hey BBV hope everyone is excited for the opening week.  Here’s a few things I’m really into:

  • ·        Saints-Packers is a matchup of two of the best offensive minds in the NFL
  • ·         Same thing is true for the NCAA and Nevada-Oregon.   Chris Ault is very creative.  Have your notepads and whiteboards ready
  • ·         Finding out what teams like the Bucs, Lions, Cowboys and Rams are really about.  Lots of hype, but there’s a lot to learn from seeing the product on the field
  • ·         Steelers-Ravens is always an epic brawl

And then there’s Giants-Redskins.  I read this article from Matt Bowen on NFP, and I thought it was pretty solid. 

Bowen writes what Shanny should call for Rex to beat the Giants’ D.   He makes some points that scare me, and some that shouldn’t scare any of us.  I don’t think we need to worry specifically about 3-4 WR sets.  If they throw their Posse or Cheetah sets on the field, I think we will see that 3-safety 4-2-5 package, and I like Rolle and Grant against their 3rd and 4th WR on the field.

However, I agree with Bowen that just like last year the middle-breaking routes are going to be an issue.  The other one that could be a problem is the sprint action and Naked off zone.  If Hightower gets going, the Giants are going to be ripe for some PA, and the Shanahan system has some really great bootlegs and sprint-outs.  Those worry me.

The key to the game is right in the middle.  The Giants DT’s need to come up big.  The D will be depending on some push from Canty and Joseph to throw off the inside zone plays the Skins have had so much success with this pre-season.  We also need to keep the LB’s clean, for obvious reasons.  To me the interior of our DL is the most important spot on the field come Sunday. 

I know if we get passing downs, we can still apply pressure with the best of them, and I know our DE’s can flat out play against the run.  It is crucial that those two DT’s play the run well enough to make the Skins look elsewhere.  If a zone running scheme gets rolling, there are too many great PA passes, screens, and sprint actions that come off that zone mesh point.  When we get to those passing downs, I’d like to see some A-gap pressure.  We got some young LBs, so bring them, and scheme to make Rex throw over a blitz.  Stuff like this is what I’m after-





The first is a man blitz (I'm not accounting for the RB because I think the Skins will protect with 6 almost 100% of the time, but it would have to be a break-off blitz by Will or Mike if the back released). The second is ½’s rolled to the 3 receiver side.  Bring some guys through the A-gap, make the RB pick one up, and play 3 step routes.  I know what you’re thinking- isn’t that blitzing to cover up a weakness?  I don’t like Kiwi and Greg Jones covering 5-7 step drop routes.  So yes, it is.

On the other side of the ball, I have no idea what to expect.  I live in the Maryland/DC area (yeah I went to UMCP, Da’Rel Scott what what) so I have the honor of hearing the Skins beat reporters everyday on ESPN radio, and they are excited about their D.  I can’t say I blame them- it’s going to be better.  For one, there’s nowhere to go but up.  Secondly, they are following a good blueprint- acquire good pass-rushers and DL.

What you guys got?  That’s what I’ll be watching, where will your attention be- Will Beatty?  Baas?  Whoever the hell they throw in at TE?  Greg Jones?  Lots of question marks going into the season here, but hey- that’s what makes it fun.

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