December 7, 2019

Five takeaways from the Washington Redskins Week Two victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars

Here are five big takeaways from the Washington Redskins’ 24-17 home opener win over the Jacksonville Jaguars:

  1. The Redskins suffered many game ending injuries to key players even though they were able to rout their opponents. The first devastating injury came on a second down with four yards to gain from the Jacksonville’s 39-yard line. Robert Griffin rolled out of the pocket to his right under pressure from MLB Paul Posluszny where he landed awkwardly on his left ankle after completing a pass to offseason acquisition Desean Jackson. The early word is a dislocation of the ankle with a possible fracture, which would mean a trip to the season ending injured reserve list. Then on a second deep route pass attempt to Desean Jackson, he is again unable to haul in the bomb, but instead runs his shoulder into the turf which gets further jammed by the force of the Jacksonville defender on top of him. Fortunately Jackson is only believed to have an AC Joint sprain and is day-to-day. The Redskins also had many minor injuries to Roy Helu (quad strain), Darrel Young (back strain), and Shawn Lauvao (knee cap).
  2. The backups of Kirk Cousins, Andre Roberts, Ryan Grant, Niles Paul, and Silas Redd play well for injured players. Cousins, coming in cold off the bench with zero reps with the starting offense during the past weeks practice, formidably showed up to put up great numbers and run the offense quite well. Cousins finished with 250 yards and two touchdowns while completing 67% of his passes. Hopefully the few miscommunications and hiccups in the offense can be fixed during next weeks practice. Roberts and Grant both saw an increase in targets with the loss of Jackson and they both finished with a total of 57 yards. Moreover, Roberts’s contribution on special teams is noticeable but may not continue if he becomes the starting receiver across from Garcon, in which case Santana Moss will have to play a role. Niles Paul played to the level that was expected of him before Jordan Reed was drafted as he finished with 99 yards and a touchdown with only one bad drop and no fumbles. Finally, Silas Redd saw playing time after Helu came out with an injury and showed great vision and strength as he averaged over five yards a carry with a touchdown.
  3. Beyond the impressive play by backups on offense the defense dominated this entire game besides a couple big plays. First the bad, Bacarri Rambo was again the victim of misplaying the ball on the Jaguars lone touchdown that went for 63 yards. Besides that play and another 54 yard catch and run by Allen Robinson, from which all of the Jaguars points came from, they only allowed 31 total yards. Much of that stems from the relentless pressure Chad Henne was under. The Redskins defense tied the franchise record with ten sacks for a total loss of 70 yards; Ryan Kerrigan had a career high four sacks with Jason Hatcher and Perry Riley both adding on another 1.5. Moreover, Chad Henne was the leading rusher for the Jaguars with a mere 17 yards while Toby Gerhart, who torched the Redskins before, was held to a mere eight yards on seven carries. All in all an excellent performance by the Redskins defense, nearly perfect besides a couple of big plays given up.
  4. Although the Redskins looked to click on all three phases of the game, including special teams which had been horrendous, all of this must be taken with a grain of salt. We did just play one of the worst franchises in the league today in the Jacksonville Jaguars at home. This should have been expected as the Redskins simply have more talent even if this comes from our backup’s depth. The true test will come next week when the Redskins can play for the division lead against the reigning champion Philadelphia Eagles.
  5. Going forward Griffin seems to be out for a significant amount of time if not for the season. More will be known after he undergoes more tests on his ankle tomorrow. If Kirk Cousins has to play a significant amount of time it will be interesting to see if he can continue with the same success many think he will have. These next few months will tell if Cousins truly did deserve to start Week 1 or if everyone’s over exaggeration was just that, an exaggeration. The thing is that all is not lost this season as is more or less the case in St. Louis after Sam Bradford was lost for the season again.

About Neil Dalal

Neil Dalal is a Staff Writer for District Sports Page covering the Redskins, Wizards, and Maryland Terrapins. Neil grew up in Silver Spring, MD and attends the University of Maryland. Neil has loved everything related to the Redskins, Wizards, Capitals, and Terrapins since he was eight years old. However, he favors the Orioles, as he started watching baseball before the Expos moved to DC. You can follow Neil on Twitter @NeilDalal96.

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