The Redskins average fewer than 20 points-per-game. The Redskins rank 27th in the NFL in yards-per-game. The stats are bad for the Washington offense, and watching the games, it makes sense.
For a Jay Gruden team, it's odd that the Redskins can't move the ball. Even when Alex Smith was healthy at quarterback, the offense still struggled.
Watching the games all season, the offense has often been ugly. On Wednesday, Gruden revealed what he believes to be the root cause for the problems.
"The big thing is we have way, way too many negative runs. Negative runs have been the death, that and penalties, both of those two things have been the curse of this offense and that kills our drives, that kills our momentum, that kills our ability to call plays, keeping everything open in the playbook," Gruden said.
The coach isn't wrong.
The Redskins have 24 false start penalties in 13 games, 2nd in the NFL. The Redskins have 27 offensive holding penalties, the most in the NFL.
Penalties have been a persistent problem all season, as have the negative runs.
Using data from the NFL, the Redskins have 19 negative rushes when they run to the right. That's tied for the worst in the league. The Redskins have another 26 negative runs to the center or left of the offensive line.
Teams can't win when they don't run the football, and the Redskins can't run the football with their current penalty problems and negative plays.
"When you have second and 18, and third and 15, your playbook goes down," Gruden said. "When you're first and 10, second and six and third and two, everything is open and we haven’t had that luxury."
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