The Washington side probably don’t have the resources to cause a big surprise and make it all the way this season. It’s just a matter of time, however, before she ranks among the most feared squads across the NFL.
By mid-October, the unnamed team also seemed hopeless. With a record of one win and five losses, it was questionable if she would do better than her dismal 3-13 performance last season.
Since then, it is the flood. Not a deluge of points, as we see in the four corners of the NFL, but a deluge of quarterback sacks. A typhoon of turnarounds. A tornado of tackles for losses. A whirlwind of pressure. In short, the perfect defensive storm.
With the inspiring presence of miraculous quarterback Alex Smith at the helm, the offense has regained some luster, but it remains 30th in terms of gains and 24th in points scored.
That’s how much this hungry young defense is transporting the team this season, and it will do so for years to come.
A monster impact
Washington has just achieved four straight victories in which the defense produced eight turnovers.
Last Sunday, against the 49ers, the 17 points generated by three turnovers allowed them to win 23-15.
Against the Steelers, a turnaround led to three points, not to mention that after the defense put the brakes on Ben Roethlisberger and his gang on a critical fourth down, the offense was able to add a goal. Six more points given by the defense in a 23-17 victory.
Not only is this defense effective for Washington by bottling up the opponent, it also contributes to the team’s offensive production.
Ron Rivera’s squad now ranks fourth in yards allowed and sixth in points. She hasn’t finished in the top 10 in either category since 2009. The jump from last year’s 27th place in these two categories is startling.
Just the start
The worst thing is that for Washington, everything indicates that this defensive domination is only in its infancy.
There is of course the arrival of the second choice in the last draft, the extraordinary defensive end Chase Young, who energized the troops. Except it’s not like he’s alone. Beside him on the front, Montez Sweat (2019), Da’Ron Payne (2018) and Jonathan Allen (2017) are all young top picks.
In the tertiary, marauder Kamren Curl, an obscure seventh round pick last spring, wows the gallery.
The Washington starting lineup earlier in the season happened to be the league’s fourth-youngest.
Right now, the Washington team are reminiscent of the Seahawks of 10 years ago. They were young, with a defense that literally exploded. In 2010, they were in the playoffs with an ordinary record of 7-9 and many were crying out loud. Two years later, they drafted Russell Wilson and have been a threat ever since.
The program in Washington is in good hands with Ron Rivera, who has laid a solid foundation, while undergoing chemotherapy treatments to fight cancer in the first half of the season.
Between Rivera, Smith and a dazzling defense, Washington is this season, the team of resilience.