Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Non-homers like Orakpo too

This is comforting. Football Outsiders' Doug Farrar covers three rookies in this week's column, and the Redskins' own Brian Orakpo is the second one featured. Objective analysis is the goal of FO, and given the rather damning Redskins team chapter Farrar wrote for this year's Football Almanac it's clear he's not a Redskins fan. That's why I think his optimism about Orakpo should be taken seriously:

"He's not just an extremely effective pass-rusher off the edge; he also closes a gap with amazing quickness out of the linebacker spot. What he hasn't done, and what he'll have to learn, is the coverage aspect of the linebacker position. He seems lost in space at this point, but that's understandable. What I didn't see was any of the hesitation that puts some rookie ends behind the 8-ball. More than once, I saw Orakpo making sure his teammates were lined up in defensive motion sets before he put his hand down. The Redskins are asking a lot of Orakpo to be an effective edge rusher and strong-side linebacker, but early indications tell me that he's up to the challenge."

This piece also illustrates concrete examples of how Albert Haynesworth will help the performance of the entire line.


  1. That's a great analysis. I think Orakpo is legit and my boy who is a die-hard UT fan thought it was a great pick by us. My concern is now all about the O-Line. I don't understand why we don't try to move Lorenzo Alexander to the O-Line to help us with depth. He played #3 tackle in heavy jumbo last year. With Orakpo, haynesworth and Jamon, we are way deep on the D side, but with Fabini gone (what happened to him?) we need some help on the other side.

  2. Fabini was not brought back because he was lousy. As the extra OL in goalline packages, Alexander had very limited assignments. I think it would be assuming alot to think he could step in as a regular OL and even know the schemes. Also, I think Alexander really can contribute something on the D-line. When Philip Daniel leaves after this year, Alexander just might be a starter, since Orakpo will be still be spending alot of time at SLB.