For years, it appeared the Washington Redskins had been constantly probably the most injured groups within the league. In 2020, lastly, it appeared like Washington caught a break. However, did they actually?
With the hiring of Ron Rivera final offseason, there was important turnover within the coaching workers, together with the firing of former head athletic coach Larry Hess. Hess had labored for the workforce for 17 years, and had shut relationships with each Dan Snyder and Bruce Allen.
Rivera introduced over his personal head coach, Ryan Vermillion, from Carolina, and augmented his workers with medical marketing consultant Kevin Wilk, amongst others.
Vermillion had been named NFL coach of the yr in 2016 and appeared typically to have a significantly better fame within the league than did Hess – who had been one of the objects of Trent Williams’ ire on the way out.
The “gold normal,” at the least a far as I’m conscious, in figuring out the extent to which NFL groups have been hobbled by harm is Football Outsiders’ “adjusted games lost (AGL)” statistic.
Adjusted Video games Misplaced is a good metric that helps to establish the true impression of accidents on a workforce. In brief, it offers groups credit score not just for the precise video games missed by starters, however for the results of accidents by way of misplaced follow time and diminished efficiency.
Anytime a starter is dominated out, a workforce will get credit score for one sport misplaced. The workforce will get partial credit score for video games through which a starter is dominated possible, questionable or uncertain primarily based on averages for the way usually these gamers truly play.
The result’s a listing that corresponds very nicely with successful. Eight of the highest 10 groups and 12 of the highest 15 in AGL completed with at the least a .500 report.
Going again at the least to 2015 – I didn’t assume it was actually mandatory to return a lot additional than that, given the clear pattern current – Washington was remarkably constant in being one of many groups most dramatically affected by harm within the NFL.
In 2015, Washington’s AGL was 31st in the league, 119.1, with the league common being 68.9. The least injured workforce within the league that yr, the Bengals, had a measly AGL of 28.2.
Washington might shock lots of people at No. 31, however there are accidents right here many don’t keep in mind, corresponding to new arrival Junior Galette taking place earlier than the season even began. The secondary was a large number with security Duke Ihenacho taking place in Week 1, and video games missed by starters corresponding to DeAngelo Corridor and Chris Culliver. Guard Shawn Lauvao missed 13 video games, DeSean Jackson missed six video games and the tight finish depth was severely examined for an offense that likes to make use of two tight ends, with Niles Paul, Logan Paulsen and Derek Service all ending on injured reserve.
Things didn’t improve much in 2016. That season, Washington completed twenty eighth within the league with an AGL of 101.5. The league common elevated to 76.1, with the Rams posting a league-best mark of 29. It ended up being an odd state of affairs although, through which not one of the 4 healthiest groups within the league made the playoffs. Amongst these Redskins’ injured for lengthy intervals of time in 2016 had been Deangelo Corridor, Kedric Golston, Keith Marshall, Kory Lichtensteiger, Josh Doctson, Steven Daniels, and Kevin Bowen.
In 2017, things hit rock bottom. Washington completed thirty second within the league in AGL, at 121. The Rams once more completed a league greatest, with a 15.6 AGL.
After Washington completed final in AGL in 2017, we will say that Gruden has had essentially the most injured groups of any coach since 2002. This 2017 whole doesn’t even embrace something for security Su’a Cravens, who shocked everybody when he determined to retire per week earlier than the common season. He was positioned on an exempt checklist and missed all the season after getting handled for post-concussion syndrome. Center linebacker Mason Foster (11.3 AGL) and first-round rookie Jonathan Allen (11.0 AGL) had been Washington’s two largest losses by AGL. The ability positions additionally misplaced tight finish Jordan Reed (8.3 AGL), working backs Rob Kelley (8.6 AGL) and Chris Thompson (6.1 AGL), and large receiver Terrelle Pryor (7.1 AGL) for prolonged intervals of time. As we’ll see subsequent week within the unit breakdowns, the depth of accidents alongside the offensive line actually pushed Washington excessive right here. Washington had a league-high 10 gamers incur at the least 6.0 AGL.
In 2018, things improved just a bit (they virtually needed to), with Washington posting the twenty fourth worse AGL within the league (99.3). Bizarrely, Washington had each the worst offensive AGL (88.9) within the league and the perfect defensive AGL (10.3) within the league that season. The most effective total AGL was the Ravens, at 29.7. Key Washington accidents that season included Derrius Guice, Tyler Catalina, Arie Kouandijo, Stacy McGee, Cam Sims, Chris Thompson, and Paul Richardson.
The following season, in 2019, Washington fell again into the cellar, quantity 31 within the league, with an AGL of 131. They had been once more final within the league in offensive AGL (81.9) and that yr, the protection caught up, ending twenty eighth (49.1). Minnesota completed greatest within the league, with an AGL of 25.6. Key Redskins’ accidents included Derrius Guice, Bryce Love, Jordan Brailford, Caleb Brantley, Vernon Davis, Jordan Reed, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Greg Stroman, and Trent Williams.
In Rivera’s first season, he’d face a well being menace (along with his personal), that nobody may have predicted: COVID-19. Football Outsiders included the loss of games to COVID as part of their 2020 calculations, and Washington benefitted in consequence.
Ryan Vermillion, Washington’s coach and infectious management officer, is among the workforce’s unsung heroes this yr. Got here from Carolina with a sterling fame and these numbers show why https://t.co/T2TELU89Dm
— Pete Hailey (@PeteHaileyNBCS) January 6, 2021
Washington was one among solely three groups within the league (Jacksonville and Seattle had been the others) to have zero video games misplaced to COVID, which is a reasonably spectacular feat. Taking COVID under consideration, Washington completed twenty fourth within the league. Nevertheless, evaluating groups with out accounting for COVID losses, Washington completed a depressing twenty seventh within the league, with an AGL of 97. Examine that to the league-leading Buccaneers, with an AGL of 25.6. Washington’s offense continued to be among the many league’s most injured, ending twenty eighth, whereas it’s protection completed in the course of the pack (14th).
Key Washington accidents in 2020 included Matt Ioannidis, Saadhiq Charles, Kelvin Harmon, Landon Collins, Kyle Allen, Antonio Gandy-Golden, Thad Moss, Brandon Scherff, and Geron Christian. One constructive, nonetheless, was that Washington had the 4th greatest AGL enchancment differential within the league (-34) from 2019 to 2020. So, they nonetheless weren’t nice – relative to the remainder of the league – by way of workforce well being, however they had been fairly good relative to the workforce’s personal horrible observe report.
Will the harm state of affairs enhance in Washington as Ryan Vermillion settles in, and Rivera will get an opportunity to extra comprehensively form the exercises of the workforce? Will workforce well being enhance as a perform of not persevering with to draft beforehand injured gamers? May it merely enhance by advantage of transferring in direction of a youthful roster composition? We’ll have to attend and see.
For these curious, Carolina’s AGL ranks for the years examined above may be discovered beneath:
2015 – 4th
2016 – ninth
2017 – seventh
2018 – twenty sixth
2019 – fifteenth
Do you assume Washington’s harm report is probably going to enhance within the coming years?
Sure, I anticipate it to enhance dramatically.
Sure, I anticipate us to begin ending in the course of the pack.
No, I feel we’ll proceed to complete close to the underside of the league by way of workforce well being.
I’m unsure, however how on earth did Larry Hess hold his job so lengthy?
215 votes whole