A lot has changed since the Washington Redskins' loss to the Philadelphia Eagles. Before that game, Redskins fans thought they had a solid team. Many fans had visions of a playoff game. Well, what a difference a week makes. Four interceptions and one quarterback change later, many Redskins fans are ready to declare the season a disaster.
One constant for the team has been quality defensive play, and the names leading the defense continue to lead SB Nation D.C.'s Player Power Rankings list. A lot can be gleaned from the state of the current Redskins team by the rankings. Punter Sav Rocca finds himself ranked higher than any offensive player.
Your voters: TJ Doyle, JP Finlay, Scott Jackson, Mike Prada, Martin Shatzer and Daniel Shiferaw.
1) London Fletcher (58 votes)
The leader of the defense landed in first place on four of six ballots. Fletcher continues to make tackles and big hits even when the Redskins overly rely on the defense.
2) Brian Orakpo (55 votes)
The 'Rak must get more holding non-calls than any Redskins pass rusher in recent history. His speed off the edge makes him a consistent threat to opposing quarterbacks and an asset to the Redskins defense. Orakpo got first place votes from Mike Prada and Scott Jackson.
3) LaRon Landry (44 votes)
Landry gives the Redskins secondary a predatory presence. He can deliver big hits from anywhere on the field, like he displayed last week against Eagles quarterback Michael Vick. Landry needs to be more consistent in tackling and coverage to truly maximize his ability, but remember he is still working back from a serious achilles injury and various other maladies.
4) Ryan Kerrigan (36 votes)
The impressive rookie has slowed from his tremendous big-play pace from the first two games of the season. That said, he performs well in pass and run coverage and still provides Orakpo a partner in rushing the passer.
5) Barry Cofield (27 votes)
Cofield brings a steadying presence to the middle of the attacking 3-4 defense employed by the Redskins. He also has an uncanny knack for knocking down passes with his big hands, or even his head. He has five passes defensed through five games.
6) Stephen Bowen (25 votes)
Redskin linebackers should be buying Bowen dinner after games considering the way he absorbs opposing offensive linemen. Through five games, Bowen registered 2.5 sacks and solid defensive line play from the defensive end position.
7) Sav Rocca (21 votes)
It says a lot about an offense when the sixth-most-important player on a team is the punter. Rocca's got game though, pinning punts deep in the opposing territory and helping the Redskins win the battle of field position.
7) Oshiomogho Atogwe (21 votes)
Atogwe grabbed his first interception last week for the Redskins and played one of his better games for Washington. If Atogwe can continue to increase production from his position, Landry could have a breakout second-half.
9) Santana Moss (11 votes)
It is quite telling that the first offensive player on the list is a 32-year-old wide reciever with two touchdowns on the year. The defense has led this Redskins team so far, though Moss has played well in spurts. Ineffective quarterback play has contributed to Moss' lack of production this year.
10) Trent Williams (9 votes)
This could be a bad omen. Despite some inconsistency, Williams was displaying the talent that made him the first draft pick for Coach Mike Shanahan with the Redskins. The severity of Williams' high ankle sprain is unknown, but he will miss time. He is a player a struggling Redskin offense can ill afford to lose.
11) Fred Davis (8 votes)
Perhaps the lone pleasant surprise on the offensive side of the ball for the Redskins, Davis has played at a high level this year. In both blocking and receiving, Davis has proved this year a capable tight end, and his play will be needed as incumbent starter Chris Cooley is out indefinitely with a broken finger. (Editorial: I went to 11 because Davis deserves to be listed.)
Others receiving votes: Rocky McIntosh (2), Jabar Gaffney (1), Kory Lichtensteiger (1). Martin Shatzer added a great comment on his vote for Lichtensteiger: "We didn't know it until this loss, but The Steiger may have been one of the Redskins' most important players so far this season. The running game was inept without him."
Votes also came in for "They All Suck" and Heath Shuler. There were no votes for Kurt Coleman, Rex Grossman's favorite target in the Eagles game.