Who will lead the Redskins in sacks in 2014?

April 29, 2014

Outside linebackers Brian Orakpo, center, and Ryan Kerrigan, right, celebrate a sack of Giants quarterback Eli Manning in 2013. (Toni L. Sandys/The Washington Post)

Brian Orakpo held his annual golf tournament on Monday, and he and fellow linebacker Ryan Kerrigan were there making news, discussing their respective contracts. But what should really get Redskins fans salivating are quotes like this one from Orakpo:

“Our defense, what Coach Haslett has emphasized is for Ryan and myself especially, is to get after it. This defense is built around us. This is the first time these guys have expressed it to me in the four years I’ve been around Haslett. I need to go into the season with that type of mentality. This defense is built to ride around me, myself and Kerrigan and to create and make everybody else’s job a lot easier, and that’s what we’re going to get into.”

Sounds like fun, right? If they stay healthy, that can only be good news. If they let defensive lineman Jason Hatcher, who had 11 sacks for the Cowboys last season, get upfield, that’s the makings of a pretty solid pass rush. Barry Cofield and Chris Baker could get some sacks as well, as could reserve outside linebackers Rob Jackson and Brandon Jenkins.

Although sacks aren’t the end-all be-all of the quarterback pressure that is so key to good defense, now seems a good a time to ask:

For extra credit, how many sacks will the leader have?

The past five seasons’ sack leaders for Washington:
2009, Orakpo and Andre Carter, 11 each
2010, Orakpo, 8.5
2011, Orakpo, 9
2012, Kerrigan, 8.5
2013, Orakpo, 10

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What’s ahead:

Mike’s Jones’s Tuesday mailbag.

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Mike Jones · April 28, 2014