In this final Teams Talk column of the season, cornerback Tarell Brown checks in to share details about the Sunday's season finale against the Washington Redskins, as it relates to special teams.**
The Redskins kicker Shaun Suisham has missed some kicks this season and I think the reason for that is other teams have been able to put a lot of pressure on him. It seems to me that they've made him get the ball off faster than he wants to, which has knocked off some of his timing and accuracy.
As far as our field goal block team is concerned, we want to take points off the board any way we can. Our defensive line has consistently done a good job of getting a good push while keeping their hands up. They've been disruptive and blocked two kicks earlier this year that were returned for touchdowns, and that's something we look for every week.
Ryan Plackemeier, we're familiar with him because he was with Seattle last year. He has a good leg and he puts the ball everywhere from what we've seen. He's a directional punter and has great placement with the ball, because he's a veteran guy who has been doing it for awhile.
The strength of their special teams units is in their return game. At punt returner they have Antwaan Randle El, who does most of the return work and also Santana Moss. Both wide receivers are explosive and do a great job of returning punts.
You have to account for them every time they're on the field on offense and it's the same way on special teams. They can take it to the house on any given return. If we have one bad angle on pursuit or someone takes a bad step, they can make you pay and take it the distance. For us, we have to swarm the ball. When our guys get down in position to make a tackle, they have to take their shots and make them count.
People forget how talented of a returner Moss was when he first came into the NFL since he's gotten away from doing the punt returns and focused on being a threat at wide receiver. But, I think he's still as explosive if not a little more than Randle El. But you can't take anything away from Randle El. He's been doing it for awhile too.
At kick returner, the Redskins use Rock Cartwright, who has thick, strong legs. He's a running back, so he has great balance and he runs very low to the ground. He's an explosive runner and we have to bring him down right away. We can't use arm tackles against a guy like Cartwright. We have to get our pads on him.
They're core special teams players are hardcore guys, although I think to play special teams in the NFL you've got to be hardcore. The Redskins have great depth on special teams and you can tell that they play with great passion and with great speed. As a group, they're very physical, and so we have to match their intensity and come out being more violent than them this Sunday.
Now that we have Allen Rossum back in our return game for the second week in a row, we want to finish the season with a big return, hopefully for a touchdown. He's been a big spark for us this season as far as punt returns, kick returns and for our special teams period. Allen is a good friend of mine and I think he makes a lot of plays for us. He's a threat and he's been doing a great job. We have to spring him to the end zone at least one more time. I think we can do that if we hold on to our blocks a little longer. If we give him a little crease – he's gone for a touchdown.
I think being physical is the biggest key to this game in terms of special teams. We have to set the tempo. Anytime you step on a football field, especially at home, you have to set the tempo and let the other team know that this is our house, and that we came to play and that we're not here to lie down. It's the last game of the season, and we're here to win this game. We're coming to show the world that we're going to be a great team next year.