Jay Gruden: There’s a cloud looming overhead

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The Saints pummeled his team on Monday night, but the other three clubs in the NFC East were losers in Week Five as well so Washington head coach Jay Gruden woke up on Tuesday morning at the helm of a first place team.

Gruden did not sound like that was his spot when he spoke to reporters on a Tuesday conference call. Gruden said there is “a cloud looming over our head with issues we have to clean up.” Those issues include safety D.J. Swearinger‘s feeling that the team isn’t taking its business seriously enough, defensive lineman Jonathan Allen‘s belief that the defense’s “communication was horrible” and an offense that has not lived up to expectations.

Offense is Gruden’s calling card and he said on Tuesday that his focus is going to be making sure that the team is running the plays that get the most out of quarterback Alex Smith.

“We had some plays we left out there for whatever reason,” Gruden said, via the Washington Post. “We have to make sure we get on the same page as him and dissect his brain a little bit and make sure that we’re all on the same page with what we are trying to read on each given play. I am a firm believer in really, really close communication with head coach and quarterback, especially the playcaller and quarterback. That’s something we’re working on … and we’re going to get him in better situations to succeed.”

With no one showing signs of running away from the pack in the division, there’s time for things to come together before it is too late to harbor hopes of advancing to the postseason. The more issues that pile up, though, the tougher it is going to be to hold onto them forever.

17 responses to “Jay Gruden: There’s a cloud looming overhead

  1. .
    ” With no one showing signs of running away from the pack in the division…”

    ——-

    There’s a textbook understatement. You could have also said “The teams of the NFC East treat victory as if it were a live grenade.”
    .

  2. The NFC East is quickly becoming the worst division in the NFL. The teams were a collective 0-4 this last week.

  3. Well for one thing, play calling. AP was doing well and running over the Saints. The Skins were only 3 pts down and the aints were able to score on bone head skins penalties so what does Gruden do? Instead of running AP @ the goal line and seemingly the rest of the game he puts in Thompson who is only good as a change of pace back. It was pathetic. I kept thinking Gruden coaches like he’s with the Vikings.

  4. I don’t like when players start yapping, especially this early in the season, but I don’t blame them in this case. I see all these teams going out and drafting excellent young QB’s, yet the Redskins chose to go with a proven mediocre retread. Alex Smith has exactly 2 playoff wins in 15 years, and now his teammates are seeing why. He’s a good backup type QB, who is smart enough to avoid turnovers, but not talented enough to win consistently against good teams. Players get tired of watching the playoffs from their couch.

  5. If Smith keeps putting his receivers in a position to get killed, then yeah that’s a dark cloud.

  6. Jay Gruden wanted Alex Smith. I thought that was strange since Gruden always pushes his QBs to prioritize deeper routes. Smith prioritizes the underneath stuff, which helps him keep his turnovers to a minimum. Smith has a history of checking down very quickly if the deeper routes aren’t open early.

    Gruden is already talking about “communication” issues. That’s troubling given they had all pre-season and several games this season to work that out. What is really happening is that Gruden’s style and Smith’s style are not compatible. Someone is going to have to change their approach. I don’t see Smith changing, he’s been doing it his way for a long time.

  7. Wrong. The offense is absolutely playing to expectations. We expected futility from Alex Smith and we got it.

  8. NHPats says:

    “The NFC East is quickly becoming the worst division in the NFL. The teams were a collective 0-4 this last week.”

    Still the most Superbowls of any division.

  9. NHPats says:
    October 10, 2018 at 7:09 am
    The NFC East is quickly becoming the worst division in the NFL. The teams were a collective 0-4 this last week.
    ________________________________________
    Yes, because one week is such a statistically significant data point. Good lawd. Those teams will be duking it out whilst the AFC East continues with their perennially poor play that allows the Pats an easy 5-6 wins each season.

  10. Has anyone heard from logicalvoices and his thoughts on how much better Alex Smith is than Kirk Cousins?

  11. NHPats says:

    “The NFC East is quickly becoming the worst division in the NFL. The teams were a collective 0-4 this last week.”

    Still the most Superbowls of any division.
    ———————
    Talk about a “who cares, this is a new season” statistic.

  12. It looks like the “winner” of the NFL East will likely have a losing record! A 6-10 record can get you a wild card spot!

  13. ^ I would disagree – 6-10 will not get a wild card spot – but be good enough for the division championship.

  14. Alex manages the offense while the defense tries to win you games. Hope your FG kicker is good and healthy.

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