By John Boyle
Much of the focus this week’s Seahawks-Redskins playoff matchup has been on the two teams’ rookie quarterbacks, and rightly so, they’re both having amazing rookie campaigns. But as much as Robert Griffin III and Russell Wilson have had similar rookie season—seriously, check the numbers below, they’re strikingly similar—the two teams have a lot more in common than young, talented signal callers, particularly on the offensive side on the ball.
Because of the athletic abilities of their quarterbacks, both teams have added zone-read option elements to their offense this season. In fact, Pete Carroll said part of his decision to do that with his team’s offense was seeing the success he saw Washington having with Griffin running the option. Both teams also used zone blocking schemes that have produced two of the best rushing attacks in the league. Washington leads the NFL in rushing, averaging 169.3 yards per game, while Seattle is third at 161.2.
The Redskins have put up slightly better numbers in the passing game (213.9 yards per game) than Seattle (189.4), but the Seahawks have improved in that area and closed the gap as the season has gone on.
“Well the obviously similarities are the young quarterbacks and the commitment to the run game, so you can start drawing comparisons right from there,” Carroll said. “Mike has won a lot of championships and lot of playoff games, so that part isn’t so much the same, but we’ll try to catch up some day. They’re really young too across the board, so there’s a lot of similarities, and it will be fun for you guys to compare it during the week leading up to game time.”
When asked about Washington’s offense, safety Earl Thomas said, “It reminds me of what we have here. Marshawn and Russ, I think they’re the two best players on offense, and they’re the two best players on their offense. The ball’s in both of their hands, they play-action off of it, it just creates a lot of game-planning you have to do on defense.”
252 for 393 (64.1%), 3,118 yards, 7.9 yards per attempt, 26 TD, 10 INT, 100.0 passer rating, 94 rushes, 489 yards (5.2 yards per carry), 4 TD.
Robert Griffin III
258 for 393 (65.6%), 3,200 yards, 8.1 yards per attempt, 20 TD, 5 INT, 102.4 passer rating, 120 rushes, 815 yards (6.8), 7 TD.
315 carries, 1,590 yards (5.0 YPC), 11 TD
335 carries, 1,613 yards (4.8), 13 TD