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The same thing happened on Webb’s 16-yard run in the second quarter. Although Kerrigan didn’t commit inside as aggressively as he did on the touchdown, Rudolph still sealed him and allowed Webb to turn the quarter at full speed. The Vikings ran at him on the next play and gained 7 yards. Rudolph and TE Visanthe Shiancoe combination-blocked him, and Kerrigan didn’t disengage from Shiancoe in time to set the edge.

RDE STEPHEN BOWEN: Coach Mike Shanahan called Saturday’s game, in which the Redskins surrendered 241 rushing yards, “the poorest game that we’ve played up front this year.” All three starting linemen are on this list, then. It’s not necessarily that they were consistently dominated, but each took turns being pushed around by the Vikings‘ quality offensive line.

On RB Toby Gerhart’s 67-yard run in the third quarter, LT Charlie Johnson sealed Bowen to the inside. Gerhart countered to the right right in the backfield before taking the handoff back to the left behind Johnson. Bowen slanted inside on the counter fake, and Johnson sealed him easily. Also, even though Bowen slanted to his left, LG Joe Berger released unimpeded to ILB London Fletcher. I can’t say for sure whether it’s Bowen’s responsibility to prevent Berger from getting to the second level, but in the Redskins‘ scheme it’s the linemen’s duty to keep offensive linemen off the inside linebackers.

Bowen also was turned inside on an 8-yard run by Gerhart on the next series. That time the Vikings positioned RT Phil Loadholt as a tight end on the left side of the formation. He blocked down on Bowen and turned Bowen in by getting his hands inside Bowen’s.

Bowen, like each of the linemen, did make some positive contributions. For example, he fought inside Johnson on a late first-quarter run to stop RB Adrian Peterson for 2 yards.

NT BARRY COFIELD: Cofield couldn’t stand his ground against LG Joe Berger and C John Sullivan’s double team on RB Adrian Peterson’s 1-yard touchdown plunge early in the second quarter. That’s a difficult task, for sure, but the space that created helped Peterson score.

Just as Bowen was sealed inside on RB Toby Gerhart’s 67-yard run, so was Cofield. Cofield engaged Sullivan and stepped to his left when the play’s direction initially went that way, but when Gerhart countered back to the other side, Sullivan moved his feet and squared Cofield out of the play.

One of Cofield’s best plays was the third-quarter sack of QB Christian Ponder. He stayed low and kept churning his legs, driving Sullivan backward. When Cofield got close enough to Ponder, he jumped and reached over Sullivan to grab Ponder’s jersey. That completely disrupted the play and led to the sack. DE Adam Carriker and ILB London Fletcher got credit for splitting the sack, but Cofield has a claim to that one.

LDE ADAM CARRIKER: Carriker, like his teammates along the line, was inconsistent. RB Adrian Peterson had early carries of 5 and 4 yards running behind double teams of Carriker. The Vikings successfully ran the option to his side several times. On QB Joe Webb’s 9-yard touchdown run, RT Phil Loadholt turned Carriker inside with a strong right-handed push, which helped Webb get to the right edge without trouble. Carriker also was pushed out by LT Charlie Johnson on RB Adrian Peterson’s 1-yard touchdown. Peterson ran through the space vacated by Carriker.

On the positive side, Carriker was strong enough to fight Loadholt off and stop RB Lorenzo Booker for only 2 yards on a third-quarter carry. He also stopped RB Toby Gerhart for no gain in the fourth quarter by splitting the gap between the center and right guard.

SS DEJON GOMES: Gomes was one of many Redskins chasing after RB Toby Gerhart on the 67-yard run. Because the LG Joe Berger got to ILB London Fletcher and FB Ryan D’Imperio sealed OLB Brian Orakpo on the edge, the defense needed Gomes to fit and make a one-on-one tackle. Instead, Gomes ran up toward the line of scrimmage inside of Fletcher, which was too sharp an angle. Gerhart easily beat him to the point of attack and was off to the races. Gomes also took too sharp an angle on a first-quarter checkdown to RB Adrian Peterson. Peterson, as a result, got to the left corner and gained 9 yards.

Gomes also was beaten on play-action in the first quarter, although TE Visanthe Shiancoe dropped what would have been a gain of more than 30 yards. He sprinted forward to stop the run, and Shiancoe released passed him. Gomes has to see the play and react faster. Time will tell whether the rookie can correct these mistakes or whether he lacks the instincts regarding angles and reads.


ILB Perry Riley was beaten in coverage on TE Kyle Rudolph’s 17-yard touchdown reception. The second-year linebacker has been beaten in coverage on other big plays this season, but this one didn’t appear to be a missed assignment. Rudolph just ran a corner route away from Riley, who was playing with inside leverage and allowed Rudolph an unrestricted release. QB Joe Webb placed the pass where only Rudolph could catch it, and S Reed Doughty didn’t get over to help in time. Earlier in the game, Riley broke up a pass to RB Adrian Peterson in the left flat by closing on the play quickly and jarring the ball loose with a quality hit.


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