Jay Gruden expressed concern with the Redskins’ run defense
After allowing the second-least rushing yards in the NFL through the quarter point, the Washington Redskins have allowed 397 yards rushing over their last two games. In their Week 6 34-20 loss to the New York Jets, the Redskins allowed 221 yards rushing. Head coach Jay Gruden expressed concern after the loss.
“They had big plays. They had a couple big runs, and that kills your rushing defense,” Gruden told reporters after the game. “And we got out of the gap one time, they cut it back and [Chris] Ivory I think had about a 60-yarder, a 50-yarder. But you’re right overall. Our run defense has not been as good, and we need to make sure we do better. Ivory is one heck of a back, but that’s no excuse. We did some good things in the running game on defense, but not good enough.”
During the week prior to the Week 6 matchup against the Jets, Redskins defensive lineman Jason Hatcher took blame for the run defense's Week 5 performance — he blamed the struggles on undisciplined gap play from the team's defensive line.
Gruden did not see any similarities in the team's two shaky performances.
“No, no, no,” Gruden said when asked about if New York's running game hurt the Redskins in the same way Atlanta's did in Week 5. “They get you spread out, and they have a couple of good receivers that you have to adjust to. With all the DB injuries that we’ve had, you can get your extra guys in the box but then you’re going to risk putting some those guys on an island against some pretty darn good receivers, so it’s pick your poison a little bit. But overall, they competed, but we gave up way too much in the rushing game.”
Gruden changed his tune on the defense's ability to contain and play sound run defense when pressed about Jets running back Chris Ivory's performance. Ivory finished Week 6 with 146 yards rushing on 20 carries, including a 54-yard long for the game.
In both of Washington's two regular season wins they controlled the clock and shut down the run on defense. They need to find a way to turn their run defense around.