Player Spotlight Edition Matt Ioannidis: The Greek Freak
Welcome back to another The Burgundy and Report Player Spotlight Edition. If Redskins fans have been keeping track, third year defensive lineman Matt Ioannidis registered his third straight sack versus the Packers. This would put him on pace for 16 sacks on the year. In all likelihood that won’t happen, but his impact on opposing quarterbacks is undeniable. The duo of Allen & Payne have received most of the attention and deservedly so, but what about Ioannidis?
What The Greek Freak Brings to the Defense
Ioannidis played a mere 18 snaps versus Green Bay, which worked out to only 26% of the total game snaps. When Coach Gruden was asked about Allen & Payne playing over 90% of the snaps, he insisted that the two were playing just too well to come off the filed. On multiple occasions the Redskins showed a 4-3 look with Allen & Payne at defensive tackle with Kerrigan & Smith as the defensive ends versus the Packers.
When Ioannidis did get his opportunity versus Green Bay he made the most of it. On one play Ioannidis got under RT Bryan Bulaga’s pads and pushed him back into Aaron Rodgers recording the sack. The play demonstrated the shear strength and power that the former Temple Owl brings to the table. One can only imagine the type of impact Ioannidis would have if given more opportunities.
Ioannidis’s impact is undeniable, but so is the depth & talent on the line. Although John Allen & Daron Payne received over 90% of the teams defensive line snaps versus Green Bay, that will undoubtedly change. Successful defenses typically rotate 5-6 lineman per game. A lineman who averages 70-80% of game snaps is uncommon in the modern day game. The Alabama duo is just starting to scratch the surface of their talent levels. In order to preserve the 1st round duo’s longevity, their teammates will be asked to relieve them from time time time. They have the luxury of having rookie Tim Settle as well as Ioannidis to step in without the Redskins having a large talent drop off. Although Settle registered zero snaps versus Green Bay, the foursome has the look of a dominant front that could carry this team.
The third year lineman is a part of a group quickly ascending to one of the best units in the NFL. In fact, they are ranked 10th against the run, compared to being dead last in 2017. They also currently rank #2 in overall defense through three weeks. During the bye week, players will have time to rest & recover. Neanderthals like Matt Ioannidis, will surely be working on his craft, agility and will undoubtedly be found in the weight room squatting some crazy weight. One thing is for sure, if The Greek Freak continues his level of dominance with only a few snaps per game, coaches will be forced to find more ways to get him on the field.
Thanks for checking out another edition of The B&G Report. Stay tuned for more player spot lights and much more!
Written By Adam Aniba
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