Richie Petibon revealed everything when he told us that only two defensive stats matter: turnovers and third-down stops.
The 2016 Redskins weren’t good enough on the one, and they sucked on the other.
More than anything else, it’s why our team missed the playoffs last season.
Not good enough on turnovers.
The Redskins forced 21 turnovers, 13 by interception and eight recovered fumbles. They were 17th-best in the category.
The Kansas City Chiefs were the league’s best with 33 take-aways.
Petibon’s The 1991 Redskins defense recorded 51 take-aways – 27 INTs and 24 fumbles recovered.
The third-down Deadskins.
The Redskins allowed 97 third-down conversions last season. Only the woebegone 49ers were worse with 102 conversions allowed.
The mush in the middle defense.
That’s based on “feel” more than studying coaching cams. But from nose tackle to safety, the middle defense looked soft. (We miss you, London Fletcher!)
Which is to say that defense had more to do with missing the playoffs than anyone or anything on the offense did.
The 2017 Redskins can make the playoffs if the defense delivers a mid-league performance on the only two stats that counts with Richie Petibon:
- Third-down stops.
Watch for that starting with tonight’s preseason game against the Ravens and throughout the season.