- John Keim, ESPN Washington Redskins reporter
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ASHBURN, Va. -- Brian Orakpo's focus isn't on sacks. Or his contract. In both cases, he says things eventually will work themselves out.
Of course, the more sacks he gets, the more money he can command and, perhaps, the more games the Washington Redskins will win.
Orakpo has three sacks through eight games. He's also in the last year of his contract.
"Look, we're 3-5; that contract stuff, we'll worry about it later," he said. "I'm not really concerned with it right now. I'm just trying to win games, man, trying to get to these playoffs. That's all. And then it will make their decision a lot easier for myself and for the coaches."
Orakpo still commands attention from offensive lines in the form of occasional double-teams, chips by tight ends and, mostly, linemen sliding his way. There were a couple times Sunday when Orakpo rushed upfield one-on-one with San Diego Chargers left tackle King Dunlap. But Dunlap knew he had inside help, so he set up wider to prevent Orakpo from rushing past him.
"Everybody's targeting somebody and [offenses] target Rak," defensive coordinator Jim Haslett said.
Still, Orakpo hasn't recorded a quarterback hurry in the past two games despite a combined 90 pass attempts. Facing quick-trigger quarterbacks such as Denver's Peyton Manning and San Diego's Philip Rivers doesn't help, either.
Orakpo was close to Rivers multiple times, driving Dunlap back. But he didn't, or couldn't, finish.
"I'm not worried about sack numbers," said Orakpo, whose career high in sacks is 11. "Sack numbers are gonna come. Put a lot of pressure, a lot of quarterback hits. They'll come."
Two of his sacks came against Oakland and quarterback Matt Flynn, who held the ball a while and could not escape pressure. The Redskins have faced elite quarterbacks for much of the season: six rank among the top 11 in terms of passer rating and five are in the top seven.
But Orakpo will have to finish more if the Redskins want to make a legitimate run at the playoffs. He has said he's fine physically, but he's also coming off two torn pectoral muscles.
As with Robert Griffin III, it takes time to get your full game back.
"It's hard," Orakpo said. "From a fan's perspective, they look at it like, 'Oh, this guy sucks.' But from around the league, coaches and everyone know what a guy brings to the table. Sometimes it's not there. Sometimes sacks are so hard to get. That's what people don't understand. They're so hard. Everything has to be perfect.
"You can have great moves and get there, but somebody else may lose contain or the quarterback may see a hole and get out. Things haven't been in our favor to get big sack numbers. But like I said, you just have to keep hunting and they'll come. I'm not too much worried about it."
Brian Orakpo’s focus isn’t on sacks. Or his contract. In both cases he says things eventually will work themselves out. Of course, the more sacks he gets, the more money he can command and, perhaps, the more games Washington will win.