The message from the Washington Redskins regarding their offense has been united throughout the offseason. Kyle Shanahan, the team’s offensive coordinator, continued to sing the same tune Wednesday, as Redskins coordinators spoke to the media for the first and last time during OTA’s.
“He stayed healthy last year running the zone read,” Kyle Shanahan said. “So I feel pretty good about that. You really hope no one gets hurt. It’s hard to control injuries. … When you do the zone read, everyone [on the opposing defense] is accounted for. There’s not many free hitters in it.”
It seems as if criticizing the Redskins offense has become the new hip thing to do in Washington, as nearly everyone has an opinion on how to best handle Robert Griffin III. Making sure that Griffin avoids the types of massive hits that put him on the shelf for several months has to be on the top of the Shanahan’s list of things to accomplish during training camp. Kyle Shanahan agreed with comments from his father earlier in the offseason, head coach Mike Shanahan, that the read-option wasn’t a factor in RG III’s injuries.
He [Kyle Shanahan] pointed out that Griffin was hurt last season on improvisational runs on passing plays, not designed runs, and he said that Griffin will learn to protect himself better by sliding at the end of runs and by throwing the ball away when under pressure.
The read-option became a staple of the Redskins offense last season after Washington found significant success with RG III spearheading the attack. The play neutralizes the opposing pass-rush, using misdirection to “freeze” opposing defenders, and often leaving them on an island to make a snap decision on where to attack the play. But like every NFL offense, defensive coordinators will eventually come up with a counter, and Washington will be forced to alter their game plan. Unfortunately for the rest of the NFL, with two of the games brightest offensive minds roaming the sidelines, that shouldn’t be an issue for the Redskins any time soon.
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