Washington Redskins: O-Line Coach Chris Foerster Key To Revitalizing Pass Protection

By Jason Bailey
Chris Foerster Redskins O-line
Rob Carr-Getty Images

Subpar defensive lines were chomping at the mouthpiece face the Washington Redskins‘ offensive line last season, and most destroyed the unit with little effort, haunting the offensive backfield, hammering Robert Griffin III, rendering the ground game immobile and disrupting the mostly one-dimensional passing attack.

Simply put, Washington’s offensive line had so many problems that the Redskins gave up trying to fix it during the season.

You can hardly blame the coordinators for that, though. The Redskins’ O-line allowed 43 sacks last season, which is quite unsettling. Through 16 games, the unit also committed 19 false starts for 84 yards lost, along with 21 holding infractions for 207 yards. I mean, let’s not sugarcoat it. The Redskins’ offensive line was beyond incompetent, and its ineptitude often led to RGIII lying flat on his back.

Now you might be asking, given last season’s numbers, why would first-year coach Jay Gruden retain offensive line coach Chris Foerster?

Well, the answer lies in Foerster’s resume. Believe it or not, Washington’s ground game has ranked among the league leaders in each of the past two seasons. Through 2012 and 2013, the Redskins’ rushing attack put up a league-leading 4,873 collective yards. Foerster’s unit also powered Washington’s running backs, who exceeded five yards per carry — and were only one of two NFL RB corps to do so.

That’s why Gruden kept Foerster on the Redskins’ coaching staff and designed an offense that features the rushing attack, coupled with significant portions of his own playbook when he was the OC with the Cincinnati Bengals. Considering the turnover that Gruden has created for the Redskins, it’s safe to say that Foerster’s unit could be poised to punish opposing defenses in 2014.

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