Third down defense. Performance in divisional games. Red zone touchdown percentage.
Those are just three (of the many, many) areas that the 2020 Redskins must be better in compared to the 2019 Redskins.
But as simple as those three things are, there's an even more cut-and-dried stat that Washington has to improve on under Ron Rivera: They need to play with the lead more often.
Hold on. Sorry.
They need to play with the lead WAY MORE OFTEN.
In fact, it's nearly impossible for them to do so less this season than they did last season.
Take a look at some of these numbers:
How often each offense was leading and trailing: pic.twitter.com/7VsWkGiiwF— Hayden Winks (@HaydenWinks) June 27, 2020
% of offensive snaps in the 2nd half while leading/trailing: pic.twitter.com/kwOi1rT0BA— Hayden Winks (@HaydenWinks) June 27, 2020
No team posted fewer total offensive snaps while up than the Redskins. Only two took more than the Burgundy and Gold while trailing.
(If you're confused how they could be 32nd but then 30th in those two respects like one unnamed writer was for a few minutes, remember that there's a third scenario where offenses take the field — when the score is tied — which isn't accounted for in the above charts.)
When you limit the data to just the third and fourth quarters, though, the Redskins were the worst in both categories.
So, you can look at this one of two ways.
One way is that the Rivera's roster has to raise their production in smaller places, such as stopping opponents on third down or scoring more TDs in the red zone, in order to build an advantage on the scoreboard.
The other way, meanwhile, is that Rivera's roster has to build an advantage on the scoreboard so they can raise their production in smaller places, such as stopping opponents on third down or scoring more TDs in the red zone.
Regardless of the side you pick, the Redskins need to lead more. Duh. Duhhhhhhhhh. You knew that already, because you have a brain. Those charts up there just tell you how much work they have to do this year.
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