Redskins' run defense has gone from NFL's worst to 'exceptional'

Josh Luckenbaugh
October 29, 2018 - 7:33 am

Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

Just last year, the Redskins had the worst rush defense in the NFL, allowing a total of 2146 yards on the ground to opponents. 

Fast forward to 2018, and Washington now has one of the league's best run defenses, lead by the "Alabama Wall" of Daron Payne and Jonathan Allen

For John Keim, Payne, Allen and fellow lineman Matt Ioannidis have been nothing short of "exceptional," the longtime Redskins beat reporter told The Junkies Monday. 

"They haven't given up a run to a back longer than 10 yards in the last four games. That's unbelievable for this group," Keim said. "Last year, they were really bad. There were a lot of injuries, and I think that health is a big factor."

And with a healthy defensive line, Washington is now second in the NFL in rushing yards allowed, keeping the likes of Alvin Kamara, Christian McCaffrey, Ezekiel Elliott and Saquon Barkley this past Sunday from doing much damage through the running game. 

In fact, no running back has rushed for more than 61 yards against the Redskins this season.

"It's Payne, it's Allen, it's Ioannidis that's playing very well. And the three of them together are exceptional," said Keim. "If you like watching just gritty football, it's fun to watch because you can see the impact of what they do on everything else."

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