Big Lineman Become Key For Redskins' New Defensive Line

Much has been made about the new personnel that’s needed for the Redskins to smoothly make the switch to the 3-4 front, but one aspect that hasn’t been explored much is the new importance placed on weight for the defensive lineman. And when I say “importance placed on weight”, I mean “absolute need for hugely massive people.” Let’s put it this way: when the Redskins signed Vonnie Holliday, they told the 285-pounder that he needed to pack on some weight.

Let’s let Adam Carriker, one of D.C.’s new 3-4 ends, explain why:

"In a 4-3, you want penetrators up front. In a 3-4, there’s three defensive linemen and we’re two-gapping and you need bigger guys to do that," says Adam Carriker, the defensive end acquired in a trade with the St. Louis Rams.

Ah, well then. Maybe that explains why the Skins will be trotting out (and probably panting awhile afterwards) a defensive line that includes several 320+ players, including Fat Albert Haynesworth, who checks in at 350. Maybe, just maybe, it’ll lead to a more productive defense.

The Redskins ranked 16th in the NFL in rushing defense last season and opponents averaged 4.0 yards per rush. They were eighth in 2008, allowing 3.8 per carry. That was playing the 4-3 front.

Those numbers don’t always mean a lot. A team that finds itself behind late in games, as the Redskins did last year, will surrender rushing yards to their opponents who are mostly trying to milk the clock without risking a turnover.

They may rank higher in pass defense, because the other teams don’t throw on them late in games, and lower against the run, because that’s all they’ll see at the end.

Here’s hopin’.

Trending Discussions

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SB Nation DC

You must be a member of SB Nation DC to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SB Nation DC. You should read them.

Join SB Nation DC

You must be a member of SB Nation DC to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SB Nation DC. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.