Redskins mailbag: Part 1

ASHBURN, Va. -- In Part 1 of the Washington Redskins mailbag, a little bit of everything: matchups against Houston; the no-huddle offense; what if Bacarri Rambo "blows up" in the first two games and more. Enjoy.

@john_keim: They are sort of related, no? If Robert Griffin III is going to find success in the pass game, then the linemen must do a solid job against J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney. If they don't, the Redskins will struggle to throw the ball consistently Sunday. If they can give Griffin time, they have the receiving talent to get open and make plays. Griffin will be pressured Sunday, because it's not like this is a great line when it comes to drop-back passing and he tends to hold the ball longer. Really, the key is the line creating gaps in the run game to avoid third-and-longs. If they have a lot of third-and-longs, Watt and Clowney will feast.

Keim: Only on occasion, not as a full-time strategy. The Redskins have more speed at receiver, but that is not the reason you go no-huddle. New England doesn't have a ton of speed at receiver; the Patriots go no-huddle quite a bit. A lot goes back to the quarterback, their familiarity with the offense and comfort level operating in this setup. And it has nothing to do with whether or not a guy did it in college, where the offense is dramatically different. I think when Griffin, and everyone else for that matter because it's new to all, gains a greater comfort level in the offense then you will perhaps see it more. For now, it will be as a curve to throw at the defense and a way to gain momentum. Also, if you go no-huddle there can be some quick three-and-outs; that's not good for a defense. You had better have confidence in the offense's ability to consistently move the ball.

Keim: Uh, no. Duke Ihenacho was just cut by his previous team; let's not make him into something he's not just yet. I'm not expecting Rambo to "blow up" in the first two games either, to the point where they have that sort of decision. While he has looked better, consider the baseline. Rambo has improved and can help, but strong safety is not his natural position. Ihenacho can be a good backup and special teams performer. There is also Phillip Thomas, if he can stay healthy, on the practice squad. I really have no idea if he can play, but the coaches like him. They will need someone else to develop, because it will be tough for Meriweather to last 14 games without another issue based on his history, fair or not.

Keim: Not sure why that line has been repeated so much since last season, but the Redskins will continue to use a two-gap in their 3-4 look. When they play different looks, yes they will use a one-gap, but they have done that in the past. If they switched to a one-gap front in a 3-4 they would need a linebacker then to be responsible for two gaps so the numbers add up. But that is not what they are doing. As a pass-rusher it's obviously better to be responsible for one gap; allows you to hit it faster -- that is the case in a 4-3 front with the linemen. Arizona switched to a one-gap 3-4 last season with success, but my guess is most 3-4 teams play two-gap.

Keim: Well, in most games DeAngelo Hall has played in Washington, he has been on one side. He's covered the best receiver all over, but not every game and certainly not every play. Most of the time the past few years he would be on the left side and Josh Wilson would be on the right. But there were times when the matchup dictated he follow the No. 1 receiver all over.