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News & Notes: Landry On the Move In Secondary


In what amounts to a shift in the Redskins' secondary, LaRon Landry played more at strong safety in Sunday's 34-13 win over the Oakland Raiders.

Landry started the game at free safety--where he has started the last 28 games--as the Redskins opened with a package that included three cornerbacks on the field.

On the game's second play, Reed Doughty came in and played free safety with Landry lining up closer to the line of scrimmage.

Later, Kareem Moore was inserted at free safety as well. On one first quarter play, Moore stayed back while Landry and Doughty both blitzed quarterback Bruce Gradkowski. Doughty got the sack to end a Raiders drive.

Landry finished the game with five tackles, a forced fumble and an interception.

Landry struggled with the transition to strong safety early on, particularly when he was forced into pass coverage.

He was twice beaten by running back Darren McFadden, who posted catches of 48 and 26 yards in the first quarter.

Landry made up for it in the fourth quarter with his interception of a JaMarcus Russell pass. He dove over wide receiver Chaz Schilens to make the catch.

Landry, who joined the Redskins as a first-round pick (sixth overall) in the 2007 NFL Draft, was thought to be a natural strong safety coming out of LSU.

At the time, Sean Taylor at free safety and Landry was expected to solidify the Redskins' secondary at strong safety. But midway through Landry's rookie year, Taylor died tragically and Landry was shifted to free safety.

He stayed there--and played well enough to be named a first alternate to the Pro Bowl following the 2008 season.

Coaches continue to like Landry's range as a free safety, but teams have continued to attack Landry's aggressiveness in coverage.

It also didn't help that Landry would play so aggressive that he would miss on tackles downfield.

Last week, Redskins secondary-cornerbacks coach Jerry Gray discussed Landry's learning curve at free safety.

"The guy was an All-American strong safety [at LSU], great player, really aggressive," Gray said. "Now he's playing free, which is more cunning, cat-like. You've got to be really thinking at that position. That's the thing he has to do.

"He has to be more passive rather than aggressive at free safety. And we've got to put him in a position to where when it's time to be aggressive, let him go be aggressive."

Gray said he hoped that Landry would continue to self-analyze himself in coverage--specifically on double moves--so that he can become a better player.

"LaRon has to say, 'Why are people running double cuts on me and doing those things?'" Gray said. "It's really because he's a very aggressive guy. He goes out to try to knock receivers out. If you take a look at the Dallas game [in Week 11], he made a lot of great plays for us.

"So what people do is they scheme him up to beat him. And you've got to be good at something in order for them to scheme. So he has to look and see why they are scheming him and then kind of be calculating against and not jump every route.

"When you don't jump it, then the next team won't try and run a double cut on you. Once you can analyze yourself, you become a lot better football player."


It may not show in the standings, but Jason Campbell is having one of the great seasons by a Redskins quarterback.

Through 13 games, Campbell has completed 260-of-398 passes this season, a 65.3 percent clip that ranks second all-time in one season in franchise history. The mark is based on a minimum of 150 attempts.

Campbell was 16-of-28 for 222 yards and two touchdowns in Sunday's 34-13 win over the Oakland Raiders. His QB rating was 106.5.

Hall of Famer Sammy Baugh holds the Redskins all-time record. He set the mark in 1945 with a 70.3 percent clip.

Sonny Jurgensen, another Hall of Famer, is currently third with a 64.1 completion percentage set in 1974.

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