Each week brings different challenges for an NFL defense. The Ravens get a few interesting ones this week when they take on the Redskins down in Landover.
One of the biggest challenges is going to be stopping rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III, someone who's playing a lot like a veteran so far this season and is a big reason the Redskins are 6-6 and fighting for a playoff spot. The Redskins are using Griffin in a number of different ways that opposing defenses are finding tough to stop.
Washington's coming into this game off of wins over the Cowboys and Giants and its "Pistol" offense has been a big reason. It involves the option and fake and quick hand-offs and is common in high schools and colleges but not in the NFL. In years past, teams at this level haven't wated to run option offenses because it means quarterbacks get hit more often.
But the Redskins are making it work now, which is something the Ravens' defense needs to watch for.
"I think it’s tough on everybody," Ravens defensive coordinator Dean Pees said when talking to the media Friday. "If you watch all the teams that they’ve played, they’ve played some darn good defenses. It’s just really a different scheme that you don’t see every week."
Pees said the Ravens are going to focus on what they did against Michael Vick and the Eagles, stick with what you're supposed to do. He wants to see the Ravens do a better job with it this time around than they did versus Vick, who really created a lot of problems even though the Ravens caused turnovers.
"Have your eyes on what your responsibility is," Pees said. "If it’s a dive, if it’s the quarterback, if it’s the pitch in the option, whatever it is, having your eyes on what you have. You have a responsibility, you have a technique, and you have to perform that thing. You have to be very disciplined, and the biggest thing is know your responsibility and have your eyes on it. The biggest thing with this guy, which we didn’t do well in the second game against [Michael] Vick is all of the sudden, he starts moving around back there and everybody is watching him instead of watching or playing the zone that you need to be in. We did a terrible job of that in Week 2. Hopefully, we’ll do a lot better this time around.”