Morning Manny: On the DL, Redskins Are Who We Thought They Were

The Redskins defensive line was an issue last season and graded out poorly in the opening loss.

Manny Benton often tweets random thoughts regarding the Washington Redskins at random times of the day that typically bring interesting dialog. Now from Monday through Thursday at around 9 a.m., you can find those Twitter-sized thoughts in "Morning Manny." Complete with explanations! 

The Redskins' perceived weakness looked rather weak Monday Night against the Pittsburgh Steelers:

If you told me that only two running backs would eclipse 100 yards rushing in week one, I would've guessed one of those backs faced the Washington Redskins. Steelers interim starter DeAngelo Williams led the league in rushing after his 143 yard effort against Washington Monday night. Williams, 33, is the oldest running back in the NFL but looked like a young and spry gazelle against Washington's defensive front. 

The Redskins ranked 26th in rush defense last year and opted to do absolutely nothing to improve upon that in the offseason.  An excuse often used is that player evaluators know more about team needs than fans and media. However, sometimes things are just plain as day to see. The Redskins have an extremely weak defensive line and it's not going to get any better.

Washington's general manager Scot McCloughan typically watches games from the sidelines. But Monday night, on the first drive of the third quarter, McCloughan appeared to specifically eyeball the team's defensive line. McCloughan marched down the field as Pittsburgh netted two separate runs for 7 yards and a long 17 yarder by DeAngelo Williams. Fortunately, the Steelers' drive was stalled and they only left with three points.

However, McCloughan was visibly frustrated. It's no wonder that he decided to re-sign veteran defensive lineman Cullen Jenkins Tuesday Morning, as first reported by Breaking BurgundyBut in all honesty, that's not a solution to the problem. 

The Redskins did this to themselves and it's not going to get any easier. I find it hard to believe they'll be able to lineup against the Dallas Cowboys week two and contain both Ezekiel Elliott and Alfred Morris in the run game. 

This team was believed to be headed in the right direction by building from the inside out. Yet, it appears they strayed away from that philosophy this past offseason. Much of the Redskins' issues on defense this season will likely stem from the lack of a formidable defensive line unit. It amazes me that one of the key reasons for Washington not emphasizing the need of a bigger presence, especially interior DL, is because of their one gap scheme. The Redskins run an attacking defensive scheme, but lack attackers up front. All that's going to do is make the jobs of your linebackers and secondary more difficult. Their identity is once again lost in the wind. 

You can find Emmanual on Twitter @manny_benton.

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