RICHMOND -- Scot McCloughan certainly knows that wins matter in the NFL. But the Redskins general manager has some goals for the 2015 season that are not necessarily measurable in the standings.
“From the standpoint of wins, doesn’t matter; I mean it matters, but I’m not going to put a number on it,” McCloughan said when asked what would make a successful season for the Redskins. “I’m not going to put a number on it, but I know this, when you play the Redskins this year, you’re going to know you played us. You’re going to feel us from the standpoint of being physical. The next morning, you’re going to be sore. We’re not going to win every game, but I tell you what, we’re going to compete no matter what. We’re going get after you and we’ll not back down from anything. I promise you, we will not back down from anything. If we do, changes will be made, but we’re not going to. We’re going to get after it.”
With the exception of a few players the Redskins have not had a reputation for being particularly tough in relation to teams like the Seahawks and 49ers. It’s no coincidence that McCloughan helped build both of those teams. He is looking to bring the same attitude to Washington.
Part of the reputation for the Redskins being more of a finesse team stems from their reliance on a zone blocking scheme in the running game for four years under Mike Shanahan and last year with Jay Gruden. The Redskins are changing to a more physical rushing scheme based on power blocking. Players are saying that the defense will be more of an attacking scheme compared to the way they operated under Jim Haslett.
“We’re going to be a competitive team every Sunday – or Monday or Saturday or whenever we’re playing – and you’re going to know you played us,” said McCloughan. “That’s all I ask for right now.”
While the team will need to win more and be in contention for playoff spots year in and year out to be considered successful, being more competitive would be a good start. They were outscored by 137 points last year (8.6 points/game). Washington lost six games by 20 points or more. If they have a chance to win a game in the fourth quarter every week, that will be a good step back towards respectability.
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