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Redskins Coaching Staff Taking Shape

jay gruden

Redskins Coaching Staff

In a little over a week, new Washington Redskins head coach Jay Gruden has assembled a good portion of his staff. The staff features holdouts from the former regime including Sean McVay (old tight ends coach who was promoted to offensive coordinator), Chris Foester (offensive line coach), Jacob Burney (defensive line coach), Raheem Morris (secondary coach) and Jim Haslett (defensive coordinator). There are still a couple of positions left open that need new coaches but here is the updated list so far:

Head coach: Jay Gruden

Jay Gruden brings with him the “fire” that Bruce Allen spoke of when he talked about hiring a head coach at the beginning of the hiring process. Much of the facts with Gruden have a “wait and see” tag attached to them but he represents what the Redskins need in a coach, strong offensive mind, the will to succeed and the ability to lead. One can only think that after having a some-what weaker armed, less mobile quarterback in Cincinnati that Gruden is licking his chops with the ideas of just what he is going to do with Robert Griffin III dancing through his head.

Offensive coordinator/ Quarterbacks Coach: Sean McVay

One thing this particular coaching search has highlighted is how highly respected McVay is by his players. This guy, who many believe looks old enough to be bussing their dinner tables at the local Ruby Tuesday’s, comes across as much older than he looks. He won’t be calling his own plays since Gruden has already gone on record saying he will call the plays, so this promotion is one McVay can ease into, McVay will also double of the quarterbacks coach. The kid has a bright future ahead of him that will likely involve being a head coach someday but for now I expect some growing pains during his initial learning period.

Offensive Assistant: Jake Peetz

Alabama offensive quality control asst. Jake Peetz will join the Redskins’ staff in the same capacity. I don’t know much about Peetz or what exact role he may have with the Redskins, but he’s on the staff none the less.

Running backs: Vacant

Earnest Byner interviewed for this still vacant position last week. No word as of yet on just how that went but some reports have said the Redskins have other interviews lined up. I personally would love seeing Byner back with the organization.

Wide receivers: Ike Hilliard

He coached the receivers for one season and the players seemed to like him, but the Redskins (Shanahan) let him go after the 2012 season.

Tight ends: Wes Phillips

It stands out that Dallas head coach Jason Garrett kept Wes on the staff even after his father, Wade Phillips, was fired…Wes was well like in Dallas by Jason Witten and company.

Offensive line: Chris Foerster

Foerster has been with Washington since 2010 but also served as the offensive coordinator for the Miami Dolphins (2004), tight ends coach for the Indianapolis Colts (2002–03), offensive line coach for the Tampa Buccaneers (1996–2001) , the Ravens (2005-2007), the 49ers (2008-2010) and assistant offensive line/tight ends coach for the Minnesota Vikings (1993–95). The offensive line needs some upgrades, I said jut a few weeks ago that everyone to the right of Trent Williams will eventually be replaced and I stand by that statement to this day.

Defensive coordinator: Jim Haslett

I will admit that I am not fully on-board with the decision to keep Jim Haslett as the defensive coordinator but perhaps I have been hasty in feeling this way. It’s been reported that Mike Shanahan had his hands all over the defensive play-calling and hiring of defensive coaches the last four years and perhaps Haslett was doomed without really ever having a chance. The fact still remains that his defense has not been successful in Washington staying at or near the bottom of the league each year. Many factors (some call them excuses) may have played a role in that, the salary cap penalty kept the team from improving the roster when everyone knew they needed upgrades all over the place and the thought that there was some “head-coach meddling” going on. Who knows what is fact or fiction in that conversation but it appears Jay Gruden and Haslett have a strong bond and Gruden seems to trust Haslett so I guess this is another “wait and see” type of hire/holdover. The front office seems to like Jim and must believe he would be good for a first-time head coach in Gruden. I believe it’s now or never for Haslett’s defense to improve or else he will be walking the unemployment line in the near future.

Defensive line: Jacob Burney

He has helped develop Barry Cofield and Chris Baker the last few years but in that same time-frame Jarvis Jenkins has yet to fully come around and the Redskins haven’t been the greatest against the run either.

Inside linebackers: Kirk Olivadotti

Olivadotti was well liked and respected his first time around in DC. He will have the responsibility of developing London Fletcher’s replacement, whoever that may be.

Outside linebackers: Brian Baker

Veteran coach (17 years) with experience in both the 3-4 and 4-3 defenses Baker has worked with Haslett in the past.

Secondary: Raheem Morris

Young, energetic and directed are some of the things that are said about Morris. London Fletcher recently gave his support of him on twitter saying he would in fact make a good defensive coordinator. I’m not completely sold on Morris as of yet but his failures with the Redskins secondary could be attributed to the same things as stated above about Haslett.
Obviously Bruce Allen likes Raheem and feels he is good for the team.

Special teams: Ben Kotwica

Don’t know much about Kotwica but those who have worked close to him have nothing but good things to say. After having the 31st and 32nd ranked special teams unit the last two years respectively there is no where to go but up.

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