2009 Washington Redskins: Playbook Changes and Adjustments

Forrest KobayashiSenior Analyst IMay 28, 2009

BALTIMORE - DECEMBER 07:  Running back Ray Rice #27 of the Baltimore Ravens eludes Washington Redskins safety LaRon Landry #30 in first quarter against the Washington Redskins December 7, 2008 at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore, Maryland.  (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Coming into the 2009 season, the Washington Redskins should not expect too many drastic changes to a successful offensive playbook from 2008. 

With a new head coach, assistant head coach, offensive coordinator, and defensive coordinator in 2008, times undoubtedly changed significantly as the Redskins transitioned to a West Coast offense.

The changes to the playbook that could be imminent this season are more of a result of player personnel changes.

Offensively, don't expect the Redskins to change much. If wide receivers Malcolm Kelly and Devin Thomas can develop into worthwhile possession threats, the coaches could implement more four-wide-receiver situations. 

However, this is somewhat unlikely, as Chris Cooley should stay in at tight end on most plays.

The running game should continue to be effective, and the Redskins may elect to use more two-running-back sets, with Clinton Portis and Mike Sellers in the backfield. 

Expect the Redskins to spell Portis a tad more often, as he appeared worn out at the end of last season. 

Without Shawn Springs and Jason Taylor on defense, the 'Skins will slightly alter the way their defensive attack takes place. The changes to the defensive playbook should be fairly significant.

Look for first round pick Brian Orakpo to be slotted into either a defensive end or strong side linebacker spot. No matter where he plays, the Redskins will utilize several blitz formations to maximize his pass-rushing abilities.

New star acquisition Albert Haynesworth will be relied upon as much in the run-stuffing department as the pass-rushing department. 

Look for the dominant inside force to do a bit of both, and pressure both running backs and quarterbacks with his elite combination of size and speed. 

The Redskins did not have a force like Haynesworth last season, so look for them to make the most of their $100 million investment.

With playmaking cornerback DeAngelo Hall becoming the primary cornerback on this defense, look for Hall to be left in more one-on-one situations, where he can make the most of his elite athleticism and propensity for bringing down interceptions. 

The Redskins may utilize an additional safety along with Carlos Rogers for double-teaming wide receivers where necessary.