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Redskins Playbook: One stat where Rob Kelley is way better than Ezekiel Elliott

Redskins Playbook: One stat where Rob Kelley is way better than Ezekiel Elliott

The point here is not to suggest Robert Kelley is a better running back than Ezekiel Elliott. Both players were rookies last season, Elliott drafted in the top five out of Ohio State and Kelley undrafted out of Tulane. 

Elliott led the NFL in rushing, gaining more than 1,600 yards and averaging more than 5 yards-per-carry. Kelley did not take over the Redskins No. 1 RB job until mid-season, and while he didn't even rush for 1,000 yards; he gained 700 yards in nine starts and averaged more than 4 YPC.

There was one stat, however, where Kelley stood out. Pro Football Focus provides the baseline.

The statistic stands out for Jordan Howard, a star rookie runner for the Bears. Howard ran for more than 1,300 yards last season on 252 carries to get to his 40 misses. 

ROSTER BATTLES: Left guard | Tight end Nickel cornerback  | Inside linebacker | Running back

Elliott's run totals were much, much higher. The Cowboys star ran the ball 322 times, resulting in 36 missed tackles. Kelley ran the ball just 168 times, and made 35 defenders miss. 

Using basic math, Elliott made a defender miss about every 8.9 carries. Kelley made a defender miss about every 4.8 carries. 

Redskins coaches talked repeatedly about Kelley's vision and ability to make defenders miss as a big part of his ascension to the top running back spot. Ends up, they were right. 

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Bruce Allen to Oakland? Why the Redskins executive could be heading west

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Bruce Allen to Oakland? Why the Redskins executive could be heading west

The Raiders made a major move on Monday when they fired General Manager Reggie McKenzie, and while that’s interesting on its own, it might be of particular interest for Redskins fans. 

Jon Gruden, in his first year of a 10-year, $100 million contract, proved that he has full control of the Raiders football operations by getting rid of McKenzie. 

For any student of history, it’s easy to point out many ties between Gruden and Washington’s Bruce Allen. 

Gruden and Allen worked together for years both in Oakland and in Tampa. Allen and Gruden got fired in Tampa, and a few years later, Allen got the top football job with the Redskins. Once a coaching vacancy opened up in 2014 and with Jon Gruden retired, Allen hired his brother Jay Gruden to be head coach. 

Speculation obviously points to a possible reunion for Allen and Gruden in Oakland, and on Monday night, NFL Network reported that the Redskins president will be on a short list to possibly get that job. 

Ian Rapoport reported that Allen, along with Mark Dominik and Jimmy Raye, are potential candidates for the new Raiders vacancy, and that Jon Gruden has final say on who gets that job. 

Beyond their time working together, Allen also owns a house in California. It’s also worth pointing out the Redskins are more than 30 games below .500 with Allen in charge of personnel for the better part of the last decade. 

The Raiders are schedule to leave Oakland and move to Las Vegas in 2020. 
 

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The Redskins' offense is a mess on its opening drive and a total disaster coming out of halftime

The Redskins' offense is a mess on its opening drive and a total disaster coming out of halftime

A game-opening drive in the NFL represents a chance to capitalize on days of practice, film study and play-scripting by moving the ball and scoring points early in that week's contest.

A game-opening drive for the 2018 Redskins represents, for the most part, a chance for fans to show up a few minutes late if needed and still not feel like they missed much of anything.

Through 13 games this season, Washington's offense has generated two touchdowns on their first possessions and punted on the other 11. Seven of those possessions have been three-and-outs, which is a very discouraging number considering a lot of the plays they're running are, in theory, what Jay Gruden and his staff feel most confident in.

Those clunky starts are a major factor in the team ranking 26th in the league in first quarter scoring at 3.7 points per game.

The group is getting worse as the year progresses, too. The initial drives in their past seven games have all ended with Tress Way kicking the ball to the opponent. The last time they first took the ball and scored points was Week 7 at home against the Cowboys.

Still have an appetite for some painful stats? Perfect, because the Redskins are awful coming out of halftime.

Their 13 possessions to begin the third quarter have resulted in one field goal, two turnovers and 10 punts. The 'Skins' offense has had 13 chances to come out of the locker room after resetting and making adjustments from the first half of action. Those 13 chances have added up to three points.

Let's repeat something: The Redskins are awful coming out of halftime. The dreadful beginnings to the second half help explain why only the Cardinals are averaging fewer third quarter points (1.8) than Washington (2.2) so far this season.

As a whole, the offense has been a struggle for the Burgundy and Gold week in and week out. And, sure, you can blame some of those struggles on the injuries that have broken down the O-line and quarterbacks.

So you can put a fraction of the abysmal first and second half opening-drive production on the injuries, too. But only a fraction.

The vast majority of the blame should be directed toward the players and coaches. Whether it's the former not executing or setting the effort back with penalties, the latter not being creative enough or attentive enough to come up with a better plan, or a horrific combination of the two, the team is stumbling far too often when it should be at its most prepared.

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