Washington Snap Count vs. Cowboys: D-line controls game, RBs end it

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How ‘bout them Cowboys?

How about them? Well, on Thanksgiving Day, it was the Washington Football Team’s time to shine with a 41-16 shellacking of the Dallas Cowboys.

Ron Rivera’s team had trick plays from offensive coordinator Scott Turner and lots of stingy defense and explosive plays from Jack Del Rio’s defense.

On offense, Washington put up 338 yards with 22 first downs, held the ball for 35:56, and went 7-for-13 on 3rd down and 1-for-1 on 4th down.

On defense, Washington forced two turnovers, had four sacks, and held the Cowboys to 4.3 yards per play, 4-for13 on 3rd down and 1-for-4 on 4th.

Here is who played and who didn’t for the Washington Football Team in Week 12:

Offense: 69 total plays
Quarterback and Offensive Line:
Alex Smith - 69 (100%)
Chase Roullier - 69 (100%)
David Sharpe - 69 (100%)
Morgan Moses - 65 (94%)
Brandon Scherff - 65 (94%)
Wes Schweitzer - 65 (94%)
Wes Martin - 6 (7%)
Keith Ismael - 4 (6%)
Dave Steinmentz - 4 (6%)

The reshuffled offensive line with Morgan Moses playing left tackle and David Sharpe at right tackle was solid, but again unspectacular. Wes Schweitzer allowed two sacks, Sharpe a QB hit and three hurries, and Moses allowed three hurries. Alex Smith was adequate in the sense that Washington won, but he was overall not great: 149 yards on 26 attempts with a touchdown, but he threw a terrible interception that was nearly a pick-6. Remember: Washington’s longest play through the air came on a pass that wasn’t thrown by the quarterback.

Running Backs:
Antonio Gibson - 45 (65%)
J.D. McKissic - 28 (41%)
Peyton Barber - 17 (25%)

Antonio Gibson is a star! The rookie out of Memphis had 136 all-purpose yards on 25 touches and three touchdowns. Peyton Barber, who Rivera praised on Friday, turned out 57 hard yards on 11 carries and re-emerged as a force out of the backfield for the first time in weeks. (Getting the ball on 65% of your plays is a high usage rate.)

Wide Receivers:
Terry McLaurin - 62 (92%)
Cam Sims - 55 (84%)
Isaiah Wright - 17 (25%)
Steven Sims - 13 (19%)
Dontrelle Inman - 11 (16%)

Terry McLaurin remains the main threat of the offense and hauled in seven catches on nine targets for 92 yards. (And, of course, his best play may have come when Dallas had the football.) Outside of McLaurin, this unit struggled to get involved in the game. And part of that could be the Cowboys’ secondary and their lack of explosive skill, but mostly it is the quarterback looking short.

Tight Ends:
Logan Thomas - 67 (97%)
Jeremy Sprinkle - 20 (29%)
Temarrick Hemingway - 9 (13%)

Logan Thomas has emerged as a really decent option in the passing game, 20 yards on four catches with a touchdown in the first half, but his blocking in the run game has really improved. He got a shoutout from Rivera during his press conference Friday and had a 28-yard completion to McLaurin. The other tight ends… are still knocking about. Temarrick Hemingway did not have a good day and was very noticeable on his nine plays.

Defense: 59 total plays
Defensive Line:
Chase Young - 51 (86%)
Daron Payne - 51 (86%)
Jon Allen - 47 (80%)
Montez Sweat - 33 (56%)
Ryan Kerrigan - 30 (51%)
Tim Settle - 19 (32%)
James Smith-Williams - 10 (17%)
Casey Toohill - 4 (7%)

Chase Young again had a stellar day (to silence critics) with two tackles, a sack, 5 pressures, 16.1% pressure rate, and the quickest get-off at 0.74 seconds, per NFL Next Gen Stats. Jon Allen had four tackles and scooped up a fumble. Daron Payne had a half-sack and three tackles. Tim Settle recorded his fifth sack of the season and set up Dallas’ bizarre fake punt. And Montez Sweat had the icing on the cake with his incredibly athletic pick-6.

Linebackers:
Cole Holcomb - 49 (83%)
Jon Bostic - 38 (64%)
Thomas Davis Sr. - 19 (32%)
Kevin Pierre-Louis - 17 (29%)
Shaun Dion Hamilton - 3 (5%)

Del Rio continues to rotate the linebackers, there were several times when Washington ran with five defensive linemen in a Bear front, and that meant Jon Bostic again played only a portion of the snaps on defense. He did contribute seven total tackles. Cole Holcomb, who emerged as a big player the last time Washington beat Dallas, led the team with 10 total tackles and added a half-sack.

Secondary:
S Kamren Curl - 59 (100%)
CB Kendall Fuller - 59 (100%)
CB Ronald Darby - 59 (100%)
CB Jimmy Moreland - 41 (69%)
S Troy Apke - 30 (51%)
S Jeremy Reaves - 29 (49%)

A week after making several great plays against the Cincinnati Bengals, it was a rough day for corner Ronald Darby. He was beat on a touchdown in the first half to Amari Cooper and was at the scene of the crime on a few other instances. Jeremy Reaves got some time at safety and had a sack of Andy Dalton. Fabian Moreau did not feature on defense.