November 12, 2019

Washington Redskins Game 10: Carolina Panthers – Five Takeaways

Against undefeated teams this season, the Washington Redskins have not fared well.

In North Carolina to take on the now 10-0 Carolina Panthers, the Redskins fell well short of their own expectations, losing 44-16. Of their final total, 14 of those points came in an entertaining first quarter.

Washington started off well. They stuffed the Panthers’ on the game’s opening drive and the Redskins came out swinging on offense with Kirk Cousins finding Desean Jackson for a 56-yard touchdown pass. After Carolina answered on their next drive, Andre Roberts took the ensuing kickoff 99 yards for a game-tying touchdown. [Read more…]

Washington Redskins Game 10 Review: Turnovers, penalties, and missed tackles doom Skins against Panthers

CONTROVERSIAL PENALTY REVERSES PICK-6, MOMENTUM AS PANTHERS BLOW OUT SKINS

Even though this might not have been a “must-win” for the Washington Redskins against the undefeated Carolina Panthers, it would have been huge for the DC franchise to keep pace in the muddled NFC East. After an early shootout similar to the Saints game last year, Washington had a pick-6 interception get called back on a controversial and questionable personal foul penalty. Not only was the 14-point swing a big deal in the final score, but the Redskins had no swagger about them on their way to a mistake-filled blowout. The Redskins fell to a record of 4-6 after a 44-16 thrashing to the 10-0 Carolina Panthers.

One of the main keys for the Redskins on defense was to stop the running game and put pressure on Cam Newton in the passing game. In the first three plays they did exactly that by dropping Jonathan Stewart for no gain before forcing back-to-back incompletions from Newton thanks to pressure from Trent Murphy and Ryan Kerrigan. Unfortunately for Washington, on a third down for Kirk Cousins felt the pressure and delivered way to high for an open DeSean Jackson for an interception.

[Read more…]

Washington Redskins Week 11 Preview: at Carolina Panthers

The Washington Redskins head to Charlotte, NC to face their second undefeated opponent in 3 weeks in the 9-0 Carolina Panthers. The Redskins are coming off their most complete performance of the season against the New Orleans Saints in a 43-14 rout, while the Panthers pulverized the Tennessee Titans, 27-10, in their Week 10 matchup.

The Panthers are led by the man who has been dominating headlines this year for his stellar play and creative celebrations, Mr. Cam Newton. Newton has been discussed as an MVP candidate this year, with his 15 passing TDs and 6 rushing TDs. He is a dynamic playmaker, especially around the red zone, where he loves to hit his big TE Greg Olsen. [Read more…]

Fantasy Football: Week 15 NFL Survivor Pool Picks

Survivor

The Week 15 Survivor pool picks (or suicide pool picks if you prefer) are here. Week 14 saw some wild finishes that saved more than a few people. Are there any safe Survivor picks in Week 15 in the NFL?

Week 14 recap

The Baltimore Ravens improbable comeback paired with the Patriots similar comeback saved lots of entrants last week. The Pittsburgh Steelers are really the only team to take any sizable portion of remaining pool entrants out as the Steel Curtain was quite forgiving.

Bye week: None. We are done for the year with byes.

Survivor Pool – Week 15 selections

Here is what we have for a top 10 from Office Football Pool and Yahoo! as of early Thursday:

Office Football Pool

Yahoo! Survival Football

Rank

Team

Picks

Rank

Team

Picks

1

Carolina Panthers

29.90%

1

Philadelphia Eagles

31.60%

2

Philadelphia Eagles

17.40%

2

Carolina Panthers

28.55%

3

Denver Broncos

9.70%

3

Kansas City Chiefs

8.02%

4

Kansas City Chiefs

9.40%

4

Indianapolis Colts

7.14%

5

Atlanta Falcons

8.40%

5

Denver Broncos

5.41%

6

Indianapolis Colts

4.80%

6

San Francisco 49ers

4.20%

7

New Orleans Saints

4.60%

7

New Orleans Saints

3.67%

8

San Francisco 49ers

3.80%

8

Atlanta Falcons

3.28%

9

Seattle Seahawks

2.80%

9

Seattle Seahawks

2.31%

10

Detroit Lions

2.50%

10

Detroit Lions

1.58%

 

Again, a reminder that you should be doing the math on your own pool as this late in the game the rankings above are less representative of what is happening in your pool than earlier in the season. Let’s see what we have for Week 15.

  1. Denver Broncos – If you have the Broncos (and if you do I’m impressed) take them now. There continues to be no reason to save teams at this point. The Broncos offense is clicking on all cylinders and even without Wes Welker; they should be fine as Jacob Tamme will slide into the slot role for the Broncos. The Chargers offense has become more balanced through the season, but the Chargers pass defense won’t be able to keep the Broncos off the board to allow the Chargers offense to pile up enough points to win. This should be a track meet won by Denver. I give the Broncos an 84% chance of winning.
  2. Carolina Panthers – The Panthers swarming defense faces Geno Smith in Carolina. I’m not sure there is much more to say. The Panthers’ offense is a little banged up now so they may struggle to score, but Smith will likely gift wrap a few turnovers to help the Panthers’ cause. I give the Panthers an 83% chance of winning.
  3. Detroit Lions – The Ravens are bad on the road (1-5 record this year). The Lions are pretty good at home. The Lions were embarrassed in the snow last week, but back indoors they should be able to run around the Ravens. The Lions run defense is stout (last week was an anomaly in the sown) so the Ravens will need to rely on Joe Flacco, Torrey Smith and whoever else is catching passes this week.  I give the Lions a 75% chance of winning.
  4. Dallas Cowboys – This is only valid if Matt Flynn starts at QB for the Packers. If Aaron Rodgers is back, take this game off the board. The Cowboys head back home after a crushing defeat by the Chicago Bears. However, it is December and the Cowboys have struggled in December for many years and their run defense can be gashed. Eddie Lacy won’t likely be at 100%, but the Cowboys should be able to bounce back with Flynn at QB. I give the Cowboys a 74% chance of winning.
  5. Indianapolis Colts – The Texans cannot wait for the season to end. They fired Gary Kubiak this week, but I don’t imagine that will fire up the troops enough. The Colts have started to give some younger WRs playing time and the results have been solid. The Colts are back at home and Andrew Luck is a bit more comfortable at home so the Colts should be able to push the Texans closer to the number one pick in 2014 when they may get the chance to draft David Carr’s brother. I give the Colts a 71% chance of winning.
  6. Atlanta Falcons – Two teams with identical 3-10 records, but seemingly one is much worse than the other. Washington has become drama central as they have benched Robert Griffin III for Kirk Cousins for the rest of the season. Mike Shanahan continues to leak news to Adam Schefter regularly so that his side of the debacle can be told. The Falcons have two of their three wins at home this year and are starting to get healthier on offense. Their defense is still a sieve, but Washington’s pig-headed coaching staff likely can’t take advantage of that weakness. I give the Falcons a 69% chance of winning.
  7. New Orleans Saints – The Saints head on the road to take on the St. Louis Rams. In the Saints last road game, they were blown out of the Pacific Northwest by the Seahawks. They regrouped last week to manhandle the Panthers at home. I assume that the dome will feel like home to Drew Brees and company. The Rams have gotten good play from both sides of the ball and are beginning to incorporate more playmakers (like Stedman Bailey) into the offense so they are dangerous. They don’t have enough tools to keep up with Brees & Co. I give the Saints a 68% chance of winning.
  8. Seattle Seahawks – The Seahawks may be the best team in the NFL. They do head east into the cold, but they face an underachieving Giants team that shows very few vital signs.  I give the Seahawks a 64% chance of winning.

Just a reminder, there is no sense in saving teams at this point. You are down to the last couple of weeks in the season and most pools will come to a close in Week 17 or early in the playoffs.

Other teams I like early this week: None

As for the avoid list, I would stay away from the Kansas City Chiefs on the road in Oakland. Yes, I told you to avoid them last week as well and I was completely wrong about how incompetent Washington was and is. This week, they go on the road for a division matchup against a Raiders team that hasn’t been as bad as all would have thought they would be. I’d probably also stay away from the San Francisco 49ers heading east to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

If you get bonus points for picking an underdog, I’d think about the Tennessee Titans at home against the Arizona Cardinals. The Cards are now without Tyrann Mathieu in the secondary and the Titans could take advantage of that with Justin Hunter on the outside and Delanie Walker abusing the Cardinals soft middle.

Just a reminder, if you ever wanted to see what Vegas thinks each team’s “chances of winning” are, use this handy little converter to transform money lines into win percentages. You can also create a spreadsheet if you’d like (or use this one – scroll to the bottom) to do it for fun at home. This percentage chance to win is another quick way to gauge win expectations for each team each week. You can get a variety of money lines here or here

Chris Garosi is a contributor for District Sports Page. One of his favorite sports memories is witnessing Wilson Alvarez’s no-hitter at Memorial Stadium in 1991. Chris has played fantasy sports since the pre-Internet days and participates in any league for any sport to which he’s invited. He even won an XFL fantasy league. Really. You can follow him on Twitter at @chrisgarosi.

Washington Redskins Game 9 Review: Redskins Fall to Panthers, 21-13, in Battle of the Heisman Winners

The Washington Redskins (3-6) looked to post big numbers against the Carolina Panthers (2-6) in Sunday afternoon’s battle of the Heisman winners, but penalties and poor performance in the red zone proved costly as the Redskins fell 21-13 at FedEx Field.

Regardless of your party affiliation or your belief in the Redskins Rule – whereby a Redskins win this week would spell four more years for the Obama administration – Sunday’s match-up was a must-win for the sub-.500 team as they looked to salvage hopes for a playoff run.

For the first time ever in NFL history, the two most recent Heisman trophy winners went head-to-head in their first season in the NFL together. Robert Griffin III went 23-for-39 with 215 yards and an additional 53 yards over 11 carries, but the 2010 trophy winner emerged the victor Sunday, despite posting less impressive numbers than his rookie counterpart.

Put simply, the Redskins failed to pose any kind of threat against the Carolina defense. In fact, their performance in the red zone was downright awful.

Washington made its way just outside the red zone on their first possession, but a holding penalty on Trent Williams cost the Skins a potential touchdown drive as both Evan Royster and Santana Moss failed to make it past the Panthers’ front line. On fourth and 10, Kai Forbath sent one between the posts from 47 yards to give the Redskins their first – and only – lead of the day.

It took the Panthers almost no time to answer.

Kealoha Pilares returned Forbath’s punt to the Panthers’ 31-yard line and Steve Smith and Jonathan Stewart helped bring the Panthers to Redskins’ territory. On first and 10 from the Redskins’ 30-yard line, DeAngelo Williams scrambled down the sideline to find the end zone as the referee blew the whistle to signal that he had stepped out of bounds on the run. However, Williams continued to run for the touchdown and, upon review, the touchdown ruling stood, despite the fact that the Redskins’ defense clearly came to a halt once the whistle sounded. Still the Panthers’ finished the second quarter with a 7-3 lead.

The Redskins seemed to have a knack for picking up yards without tacking on points. On their first drive of the second quarter, the Redskins managed to convert two fourth downs to find themselves within seven yards of a go-ahead touchdown. Alfred Morris ran the ball to the second-yard line, only to lose two yards on the next play and on third and 4, the Redskins entrusted the ball to Brandon Banks, who failed to make it past the two-yard line. Given the Redskins’ nearly perfect fourth down conversion rate, Coach Mike Shanahan stuck with Griffin and company on fourth and 2 for the QB draw, but Griffin failed to find a hole in the Panthers’ defense.

On the next drive, Newton ran the ball 15 yards on two plays and found Mike Tolbert and Greg Olsen for seven and 17 yards respectively.

However, the biggest help came from the Redskins’ defense as London Fletcher cost Washington 15 yards for roughing the passer and Josh Wilson brought the Panthers to the Redskins’ 19-yard line on a questionable pass interference penalty. Nevertheless, Newton found Smith for the touchdown and the Panthers headed for the locker room with a 14-3 lead.

The Redskins’ offense was slow to wake in the second half, but the defense held the Panthers’ to an 11-point lead long enough to allow Forbath to trim their lead to 14-6 with a 25-yard field goal.

In the fourth quarter, things fell apart fast for Washington.

After Griffin endured his second of four sacks on the day – all of which occurred in the second half – the Panthers regained possession of the ball with just over 14 minutes left to play. On the very first play, Newton fired to Armanti Edwards for an 82-yard catch-and-carry in just his second career possession. Then, Williams picked up another three yards and the Redskins lost an additional five yards on yet another pass interference penalty on Wilson. On the next play, Newton ran the ball for the touchdown to give the Panthers a commanding 21-6 lead.

Then, the Redskins failed to make it beyond their own 43-yard line on their next two possessions.

With just over three minutes left in the game, the Redskins’ offense finally broke into Panthers territory. On third and 4, Griffin tossed an incomplete pass to Santana Moss who suffered a concussion on the play and left the game. Griffin carried the ball himself to convert the fourth down and keep the drive alive and he tossed to Leonard Hankerson who picked up seven yards.

Penalties continued to hurt the Redskins, who managed 13 on the day. Twice, Griffin sent the ball into the end zone, only to have the touchdowns nullified – the first on a holding penalty by Will Montgomery and the second on an illegal formation penalty.

The third time was the charm, however, as Griffin found Royster for the two-yard catch. But, it was too little too late for the Redskins who fell 21-13 in front of a FedEx crowd that began filing out of the stands long before the game was called.

It will be a real challenge for Redskins fans to remain optimistic in the weeks ahead. Coming out of next week’s bye, the Redskins have three straight NFC East games and if they expect to position themselves as even a long-shot in their division, they will need to tally wins in at least two of their next three match-ups.

 

 

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