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Preview: Washington Football Team's Defense vs. Raiders Offense

Among the best defenses in the NFL last season, the Washington Football Team's defense has fallen off significantly as they prepare to face the Las Vegas Raiders.

The Washington Football Team was able to win the NFC East last season largely on the strength of its fourth-ranked scoring defense. 

They were elite in both stopping the pass and creating turnovers, and heading into this season was seen as the biggest reason why Washington could take another step up in contention. 

What's happened instead is that Washington's defense has gone from being among the league's best to being one of the worst. 

While they have looked better recently in allowing no more than 21 points in their last four games, they still rank only 25th in scoring defense. 

Washington hasn't created turnovers at the same rate as last season, and has given up the most passing touchdowns in the league. 

A big reason for this has been the regression in the pass rush, averaging nearly a whole sack less than last season. 

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This is despite still having on paper one of the most talented defensive lines in the league with defensive ends Chase Young and Montez Sweat and defensive tackles Johnathan Allen and Daron Payne. 

It's helped even less by the fact that Young is out for the season because of a torn ACL. 

The one thing Washington has done well this season is stopping the run, ranking in the top-five in rush yards allowed. 

It's a matchup that could favor the Las Vegas Raiders if they can connect down the field the same way they did in their win over the Dallas Cowboys on Thanksgiving. 

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