Jack Del Rio has seen the Redskins defense. He thinks he “can improve.”

And although the Redskins were not exactly the last among the 32 NFL teams in total allowed yards (finishing five places higher in 27), Del Rio’s point was clear: Washington’s defense was a disaster in 2019, and despite From the belief of many in the league that unity has a lot of potential, he thought he played badly.

“The potential doesn’t really matter,” Del Rio growled. “It’s not much”.

Wednesday’s call was the first time Del Rio spoke publicly in Washington since he agreed to run Ron Rivera’s defense on January 1, and although he said he was still trying to design a new scheme and evaluate the players he had inherited, He was also open in frustration at how disorganized last year’s defense seemed, especially when asked about the lack of communication between players during the games.

“That will be one of the great challenges and areas to improve,” he said of communication problems. “All you have to do is watch the tape. When you are watching the tape, there are countless examples of just before the snap where players are not in a good position, with knees bent, focus on the offensive. They turn to each other looking at each other, as if asking. You can see them asking each other like, “What’s going on?”

Del Rio, which will change the defense of a 3-4 scheme to a 4-3 scheme, continued to describe the “clues” that opposing offenses give to the defenses before the ball is broken, saying that it can pick up the intention of the game by the way the players stand or the way they move in the seconds before the play begins. He believes that this time is sacred, the moment when defensive players can evaluate what is coming and potentially adjust.

That’s why he sounded so disgusted by the confusion the Redskins suffered when they settled down last year.

“We don’t even have time to look for those clues if we don’t know what we’re doing to get started, so the urgency in that pregame part is huge for me,” said Del Rio. “That will be very important for us to have the opportunity of knowing how we are being attacked, not just how we are going to line up. “

Rivera, whose record is in the defense, has put this Redskins group in the hands of Del Rio. And despite the frustration expressed by Del Rio after seeing last year’s defense, he also sounded optimistic.

“This is a good group,” he said. “I am excited about the opportunity to teach and develop these guys. I think there are some proud people in this building who want this to work the right way.”

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