By Rich Tandler
There will be scrutiny of the Kyle Shanahan’s run-pass selections in Washington’s win over the Rams (and it will be broken down in detail here tomorrow as we did last week and the week before) but there is no disputing that for the game the play selection was slightly in favor of the run.
In the stat book the Redskins had 40 rushes but you take away five by Rex Grossman, three of which came when passes were called and two of which were kneel downs at the end of the game, and you get 35. Grossman threw 29 times and if you add in the three other plays that were called passes you have 32 pass plays.
It also is hard to argue that the offense was not effective. The Redskins outgained the Rams by almost a two to one margin, posting 339 yards of offense to just 172 for St. Louis.
Certainly, the raw numbers don’t tell the whole story and it is correct to take issue with some pass calls in certain situations but it is hard to argue with the overall effectiveness of the strategy.
You also can’t argue with how well the Redskins defense played even when you consider that they benefitted from a several dropped passes. The 172 total yards allowed were the fewest since they gave up 147 to Dallas on Dec. 30, 2007. Their seven sacks were the most since they sacked Raiders quarterbacks eight times on Dec. 13, 2009.
The Redskins did give up 10 points in the fourth quarter. But after Grossman threw another interception that gave the Rams the ball on the Washington 19 with a chance to tie, Bowen and Orakpo slammed the door with back-to-back sacks, forcing a punt. Then, after the offense went three and out, burning off just over a minute, the Redskins didn’t allow a last-chance drive advance out of Rams territory.