Jay Gruden was making the rounds in DC on Monday – first he joined the Rooster on 980, and then, he jumped on with Grant & Danny on 106.7 The Fan.
And when he did that, his high praise for the Commanders’ win in Denver was all about the defense, especially Chase Young’s performance in his first game back.
“We were told Chase Young would be on a pitch count and that in his first game back to try to keep him healthy, maybe he wouldn't play a ton,” Grant Paulsen said, “but he got to a point where he just wasn't coming off the field. I think he was just eating and dominating the tackle and basically said, I'll just stay on the field now, and he ended up having his best game in a couple of years.”
“Yeah, they had some packages with five bigs on the field at the same time, and he did what he's supposed to do,” Gruden replied. “He had a couple mess-ups, but for the most part, he played pretty good. It's just good to see him on the field instead of waving a towel on the sideline all the time.
It was an impressive performance for his first one, and he’ll get in better shape as the season goes on and be more of a factor.”
Both Young and Montez Sweat are in contract years, and there’s been wonder if the Commanders could and would pay both – and right now, they have the good problem to have in figuring out how to try it, because Sweat is also balling.
“Yeah, he’s been awesome, man. He's doing everything,” Gruden said. “He's playing well against the run and he's getting up the field and chasing people down with his speed, and that’s what you got to love about him. He can just really run, and when quarterbacks break contain, he's gonna catch him, and not many guys at his size can do that.”
There are some things that still need to be cleaned up, though, like the busted coverage that led to a long touchdown pass.
“I think it was tight splits by the receivers, so some teams have an automatic where they send both corners like a run blitz and they played cover two behind it, a two-deep fire zone,” Gruden said. “The back-side safety kind of jumped the receiver on his side and left the other safety high and dry, hence the big play.”
Grant also asked about a huge chunk play to Marvin Mims where he beat first-round pick Emmanuel Forbes – one of two catches Mims had for triple-digit receiving yards.
“Yeah, it was just single high and it was just, he just ran by him,” Gruden said. “I was surprised that there was only two opportunities for the guy to catch a ball – he had two catches for 100 yards and never got another target – but sometimes that happens. I think he might have just got caught up and didn't get out quick enough, and got run by.”
Gruden will join G&D every Monday at 5 p.m. this season, so stay tuned for more goodness from Coach!