Just 10 months ago, Vikings coach Leslie Frazier was fielding questions about his job security. Now…
Redskins are worst in NFL on third down
Teams with poor third-down conversion percentages often explain the problem comes from not gaining enough yards on first and second down to set up short third-down tries.
But it's not so simple for the Redskins. They rank last in the NFL, converting just 23.3 percent of their third downs (14 of 60).
"I don't think it's ever one thing in particular," Washington offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan said. "It's a little different thing each week."
The Redskins are a combined 0-for-9 on third-and-2 and third-and-3. The league average conversion rate in those situations is 47 percent. Shanahan said his philosophy on third-and-2 or third-and-3 depends on the opponent.
Washington has converted both its third-and-1 attempts, but no team has faced fewer third-and-1s this season. League-wide, teams are converting 66 percent of their 3-and-1s.
Shanahan said players tend to press on third downs when they fail so often to convert, but he hasn't seen that with this team — at least not yet.
"I don't think that's been the issue so far, but I think everybody does up to a certain time when that's obviously what you're struggling at each week," Shanahan said.
Quarterback Robert Griffin III — who appears on track to start against the Minnesota Vikings on Saturday after practicing Thursday — believes the Redskins won't fret on third downs.
"It's not something you need to press about," Griffin said Wednesday. "It is something that is a glaring issue for us right now. Teams are going to try to exploit that and say ‘Hey, whatever we run on third down, these guys aren't being able to move the ball and get first downs.' We'll make sure we clean that up, and that takes everybody."
Washington converted just 1-of-9 third downs during a 24-17 loss to the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday — a 77-yard touchdown pass from Kirk Cousins to Santana Moss on third-and-9 in the fourth quarter.
Of course, teams can move the chains before ever reaching third down. Washington ranks fourth in the NFL with 18.8 first downs per game on first and second downs.
But that might not be a feasible solution against the Vikings.
"They make you work," Shanahan said. "They make you go down the field. They make you beat them five yards at a time.
"They stop you on a few runs, and you get in a third and long, and they can tee off in that situation."
LionsReport.com Recommended Stories
Dr. Roto Video: Week 12 Key Matchups
Dr. Roto highlights each and every game upcoming for Week 12 and a Fantasy matchup to monitor within. Cleveland Browns WR Josh Gordon (pictured above) makes his return against the less-than-stellar…Read More
The 10 Biggest Anti-Knife Cities In The U.S.
If you're a hunter or an outdoorsman like us, chances are you carry some sort of pocket knife or multi-tool with a blade at all times. If you visit some of these cities your every-day tool could put…Read More
OU's Perine rushes into record books
Norman has seen a lot of special days, but few will compare to what Samaje Perine did Saturday in rushing for 427 yards and five touchdowns.Read More
6 Biggest Man-to-Man Rivalries in Sports
From Pierce and Lebron to Peyton and Tom to Ali and Frazier, we're celebrating love/hate on and off the field of play.Read More
Apache Administers Death to Taliban (VIDEO)
The Apache helicopter is one of the most famed and efficient killing machines in the U.S Army. Get the skinny on this 'steel dragon' and watch what one does to a platoon of Taliban fighters in…Read More
- Can we beat New England?
- 13 TDs 9 INTs - same stats as a rookie QB on an 0-10 team
- This board is in free fall again--right on time
- Patriots will destroy the same old fradulent Lions
- Caldwell says he's satisfied with lombardis playcalling