Washington Redskins: 3 Players Primed for a Breakout Season in 2018

Washington Redskins: 3 Players Primed for a Breakout Season in 2018

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Defensive End Jonathan Allen

The Redskins were legitimately shocked last year when Alabama stalwart Jonathan Allen fell to them at No. 17 overall. Allen allegedly had issues with both shoulders and that scared some teams away.

Not Washington. The Redskins had been starving for impact defensive linemen for years. And finally, Washington was set to use a first-round pick on one in Allen. It was a sound investment.

Unfortunately, a foot injury cut Allen’s rookie season short, as he appeared in five games, all starts. Allen’s impact was immediate. Washington’s run defense was strong while Allen was in the starting lineup, allowing opponents an average of fewer than four yards per attempt. After Allen went down, Washington’s defense was a sieve. The Redskins could not stop the run.

The primary focus of the organization was to replace Cousins on offense and finally fix the run defense. In drafting Daron Payne in the first round, the Redskins believe they’ve done that. But, arguably, no one is more important to this defense than Allen. He has the potential to be an All-Pro and is equally effective rushing the passer as he is stopping the run.

Allen’s intentions for 2018 are clear. He wants and expects this new defense to dominate. If they do, he will be a household name by December for his exploits in the NFL and not just the college game.

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