October 31, 2014

Five takeaways from the Washington Redskins Week Four loss to the New York Giants

Here are the five biggest takeaways from the Washington Redskins’ 45-14 loss to the New York Giants:

  1. The turnovers came early and often.

It all started when Tyler Polumbus got beat around the edge by a speed rush from Mathias Kiwanuka. Kirk Cousins’s clock did not go off in his head, he never saw the rusher, did not step up in the pocket, but got blasted, lost the football, and gave the Giants a short field. Then while still in the game and poised to score, Logan Paulson gets stood up and stripped after a small dump off pass. As if this was not bad enough to have given up ten points off of turnovers and missing a scoring opportunity, the second half was a disaster. On a play that Pierre Garcon came out for and Ryan Grant was matched up against Prince Amukamara, Cousins throws it right between the two and the zero. Only problem is Grant’s number is 14 and Amukamara’s is 20, whether this was Grant’s fault or not is up in the air but it was the first domino to fall in the demise of the Redskins. After getting the ball back, Cousins gives it right back to the Giants by lofting up a deep ball that the center fielder Quintin Demps easily picks off. To pile on more, Cousins throws a ball right to Trumaine McBride who he must not have seen undercut Andre Robert’s route. The misery came to an end when Cousins was picked off on an underthrown deep ball by Antre Rolle where he had no room to step up in the pocket.

  1. Kirk Cousins reaffirms that “this is Roberts’s team”.

After playing nearly out of his mind just four short days ago in Philadelphia, Cousins played worse than a rookie. He threw four interceptions in the span of eight pass attempts and for most of the second half had more completions to the Giants defenders than his own receivers. Not seeing the defender is simply not excuse at this level. That’s now 15 interceptions, 3 lost fumbles and 14 touchdown passes in 11 career games for Cousins. Unlike last week, Cousins was not able to get his best two playmakers in Pierre Garcon and DeSean Jackson involved in the game giving the Giants secondary a night off. On balls intended to wide receivers, Cousins was a lousy 4-for-17 with four interceptions, proving that dumping the ball off to running backs and tight ends will not cut it in the NFL. Cousins will probably have another four weeks to showcase himself, but seeing as how the next two weeks are against the great defenses of Seattle and Arizona I do not see him continuing to start once Robert Griffin is healthy.

  1. Defense gets torched, but not completely their fault.

To say the defense got burned by the Giants’ mediocre core of tight ends is an understatement. They gave up three touchdowns to unheard of Larry Donnell in a span of 20 minutes and had everyone rushing to their fantasy teams. They also gave up another touchdown to the Giants backup tight end Daniel Fells, which ended the game momentum wise. The defense did do a bad job again, but when being so thin at all position, without DeAngelo Hall and having Brian Orakpo and Jason Hatcher not playing 100%, it is tough to defend an NFL offense on a short week. To make matters worse that offense could not sustain drives and turned the ball over often making them stay on the field for over 37 minutes of the game while getting little rest in between.

  1. More bad injury news.

After one of the best throws by Kirk Cousins in the game where he dropped it right into the bucket of Niles Paul, Paul was nearly decapitated with two vicious hits from the Giant’s defensive backs. Paul was motionless for some time in which he had his arms extended forward and for sure either unconscious or dazed. He was diagnosed with a concussion and will have to go through the NFL’s protocol before returning to action. More bad news came when Trent Williams came up hobbling after one of Cousin’s interceptions. He has officially been ruled as having a strained right knee and will get an MRI tomorrow to figure out the scope of the injury. The preliminary word is no ligament damage, possibly a dislocated knee cap that he thinks might have popped back in, but currently in a lot of pain. Defensively, Jarvis Jenkins has bruised, but no broken, ribs that were aggravated on the second goal line stand.

  1. The future looks bleaker than the present, seriously.

In 11 days the Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks will be coming to town with their eyes on having a feast on a down team. The Giants are not a good football team, but the Seahawks are and it could be déjà vu all over again next game if serious changes are not made. Fans can hold onto hope by a thread if they believe that the time to get healthy will make a difference, but if it doesn’t things could be ugly again on national television.

Five takeaways from the Washington Redskins Week Three loss to the Philadelphia Eagles

Here are the five biggest takeaways from the Washington Redskins’ 37-34 division opening loss to the Philadelphia Eagles: [Read more...]

Washington Redskins Monday Morning Roundup Week 1

Here is what people are talking about after the Washington Redskins lost their season opener to the Houston Texans 17-6:

ESPN.com, John Keim: [Trent] Williams on Watt: ‘Very little you can do’

“I mean, I know who J.J. Watt was. We knew he’d be something to deal with. He’s really the one that hurt us. We knew that was going to happen. There’s very little you can do to shut him out.”

ESPN.com, John Keim: Rapid Reaction: Washington Redskins

“they [Redskins] looked too much like the group that played last season than the team they want to be going forward.”

CSN Washington.com, Takir El-Bashir: RG3, Redskins beat up in opening loss to J.J. Watt, Texans

“With two star wide receivers, a Pro Bowl left tackle and a top tier running back, the Redskins’ offense has the potential to rank among the league’s most explosive units.

It was anything but in Sunday’s season opener.”

CSN Washington.com, Rich Tandler: No big plays for Jackson in Redskins debut

“[Desean] Jackson led the NFL last year in scrimmage plays of 20 yards or more with 25 but he got none today. One obvious reason was that J. J. Watt and the rest of the Houston defense was applying relentless pressure on Robert Griffin III, rarely leaving him time to find Jackson on anything resembling a deep pass.”

CSN Washington.com, Video: RG3 on forcing plays and taking them

“RG3 says the team has to take the routs that are given to them, instead of forcing plays down field.”

CSN Washington.com, Video: Gruden and RG3 in agreement on blame

“Redskins coach Jay Gruden puts the responsibility on play calling and the quarterback to get the ball in the end zone, and RG3 agrees.”

ESPN980.com, Kevin Sheehan: Skins-Texans Wrap

“Two turnovers instead of scores on the two best offensive drives of the game to start the 3rd quarter were killers.”

Redskins.com, Andrew Walker: Redskins Drop Season Opener To Texans, 17-6

“The Redskins will take the next few hours to go over what went right and what went wrong in today’s Redskins-Texans season opener, but their primary focus has already moved on to next Sunday’s home opener against the Jacksonville Jaguars.”

WashingtonPost.com, Mike Jones: Redskins’ self-inflicted damage in 17-6 loss to Houston ruins Jay Gruden’s debut

“Jay Gruden knew his team — particularly his young quarterback and the offense — might struggle out of the gates as it took on a Houston Texans team led by a fierce defensive front and Pro Bowl pass rusher J.J. Watt.”

WashingtonPost.com, Dan Steinberg: Best and worst from Redskins-Texans

“Worst way to get beat late in the fourth quarter: A Ryan Fitzpatrick third-down run up the middle. On perhaps the game’s most crucial snap — a third and six near midfield late in the game — Houston’s totally average quarterback scrambled for nine yards and a first down. “

WashingtonPost.com, Chelsea Janes: Jay Gruden: I’m not pleased with any part of our game because we lost

“On concerns about his offensive line’s ability to protect Robert Griffin III?
‘I [Gruden] think the thing is when you’re trailing, every pass rush in the NFL becomes a problem.'”

WashingtonTimes.com, Thom Loverro: Something is missing for RG3 in rough Redskins opener

“No one builds statues for quarterbacks who dink, dunk and dribble their way to the most unimpressive 29 for 37 day passing for 267 yards (maybe 100 more, if we measured the horizontal distance) you may ever see. No one names streets for quarterbacks who led their offense to just six points.”

Washington Redskins 2014 Season Preview Part IV: Offensive Line

All this week leading up to the Washington Redskins 2014 season opener against the Houston Texans on Sept. 7, District Sports Page is taking an in-depth look at the players that will make up the 53-man roster to start the season in a position-by-position breakdown.

In Part I, Neal Dalal took a look at the Quarterback position.
In Part II, Eric Hobeck examined the situation at running back.
In Part III, Joe Mercer previewed the wide receiver corps.

Here now is Part IV, a look at the men responsible for protecting Robert Griffin III, the offensive line. [Read more...]

Trent Williams named to Pro Bowl

Washington Redskins left tackle Trent Williams was selected to the 2013 Pro Bowl, his second in a row, the league announced Friday.

Williams, 25, is in his third season as an offensive captain for the Redskins. He has remained among the league’s top offensive tackles in his first four full season since being selected No. 4 overall in the 2010 NFL Draft.

WR Pierre Garcon, CB DeAngelo Hall, RB Alfred Morris and LB Brian Orakpo were named as alternatives.

This season, the actual rosters for the Pro Bowl will be selected “draft style” by winners of a fantasy football contest instead of the traditional AFC-NFC matchup.

Washington Redskins Postgame Audio: 24-14 Loss To Seattle

LANDOVER, MD–The Washington Redskins give up 24 unanswered points and fell to the Seattle Seahawks 24-14 as their season officially comes to an end.

The big story was Robert Griffin III.  Griffin III (10-of-19, 84 yards, two touchdowns, one interception) re-aggravated his right knee in the first quarter and looked gimpy the rest of the game.  He could barely run and an ugly play off a bad snap late in the fourth quarter left him in even more pain, allowing the Seahawks to recover a fumble at the Redskins five yard line which set up a chip shot field goal that put the game out of reach.

“I’m the quarterback of this team,”  Griffin III said. “My job is to be out there if I can play. The only time I couldn’t play was when I went down. I took myself out of the game. That’s just the way you have to play. Just to tackle the next question, I don’t feel like me being out there hurt the team in any way. I’m the best option for this team, and that’s why I’m the starter.”

Kirk Cousins came in, but didn’t have much time to work any magic.  Following the loss, Griffin III went straight to the hospital to have an MRI and will know the results sometime later tonight.

“I think I did put myself at more risk by being out there,”  Griffin III said.  “But every time you step on the football field in between those lines you’re putting your life, your career [and] every single ligament in your body in jeopardy. That’s just the approach I had to take toward it. My teammates needed me out there, so I was out there for them. When it comes to the impact of the injury, I’m not sure what it is. We’ll figure that out here in the next few days. Whatever it is, I’ll make sure I come back healthy from it.”

Redskins Head Coach Mike Shanahan had no problem with him being out there.

“Robert will have the MRI,”  Shanahan said.  “We always check that out to see how serious it is… I did and I talked to Robert and he said to me, ‘Coach, there’s a difference between being injured and being hurt.’ He said, ‘I can guarantee I’m hurt right now but give me a chance to win this football game because I guarantee I’m not injured.’ That was enough for me. I thought he did enough this year to have that opportunity to stay in the football game. It’s always a tough decision when to pull a guy and when not to. I talked to him at halftime and had to feel good about him to go back in. I told him we’re going to run the football and he’s going to have to prove to me and like I said before, he said, ‘Trust me. I want to be in there and I deserve to be in there,’ and I couldn’t disagree with him.”

Even though they lost, Shanahan was happy with how the team responded from a 3-6 record at the bye to finishing the season as NFC East Champions.

“I told the players after the game that not too many football teams can be 3-6 and have the type of character to play how they did in the last half of the season. It’s really a compliment to the guys in that locker room, really a compliment to the fans out there to support us the way they did – really got our team energized throughout the second half of the season. It was a fun run. I’m very disappointed today. You always want to play your best football during the playoffs. We probably had our best first quarter. After that first quarter, we just didn’t seem to get things done. It was very tough, but I’m excited about this football team – the direction we’re headed. We’re not very happy. There’s only one team that’s happy at the end of the year, and unfortunately, we’re going home a little bit earlier than expected.”

Listen here to what Mike Shanahan, Robert Griffin III, Pierre Garçon, Kirk Cousins, Darrel Young, Trent Williams, Ryan Kerrigan, Lorenzo Alexander, Logan Paulsen, London Fletcher, Josh Wilson & Stephen Bowen had to say as their season comes to an end.

Mike Shanahan Postgame Audio

01-06-13 Mike Shanahan Postgame RAW

Robert Griffin III Postgame Audio

01-06-13 Robert Griffin III Postgame RAW

Pierre Garçon Postgame Audio

01-06-13 Pierre Garcon Postgame RAW

Kirk Cousins Postgame Audio

01-06-13 Kirk Cousins Postgame RAW

Darrel Young Postgame Audio

01-06-13 Darrel Young Postgame RAW

Trent Williams Postgame Audio

01-06-13 Trent Williams Postgame RAW

Ryan Kerrigan Postgame Audio

01-06-13 Ryan Kerrigan Postgame RAW

Lorenzo Alexander Postgame Audio

01-06-13 Lorenzo Alexander Postgame RAW

Logan Paulsen Postgame Audio

01-06-13 Logan Paulsen Postgame RAW

London Fletcher Postgame Audio

01-06-13 London Fletcher Postgame RAW

Josh Wilson Postgame Audio

01-06-13 Josh Wilson Postgame RAW

Stephen Bowen Postgame Audio

01-06-13 Stephen Bowen Postgame RAW

Three Redskins selected to Pro Bowl, Fletcher, Morris named alternates

It comes as little surprise that rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III was named Wednesday to the NFL Pro Bowl taking place Sunday, Jan. 27, 2013 at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu.

Griffin has completed 249-of-375 passes this season (66.4 percent) for 3,100 yards with 20 touchdowns, only five interceptions and a passer rating of 104.1 He holds at least a share of team rookie records for passing attempts, pass completions, passing yards and passing touchdowns and is on target to set team rookie records for completion percentage and passer ratings. Additionally, he has rushed 114 times for 752 yards with six rushing touchdowns. His 6.6 yards per carry average leads the NFL among players with at least 100 rushing attempts.

Griffin is the first rookie quarterback selected to the Pro Bowl in Redskins history. Prior to 2012, only six rookie quarterbacks in NFL history had been named to the contest.

Linebacker/special teamer Lorenzo Alexander and tackle Trent Williams will also join Griffin in Hawaii. Additionally, London Fletcher and Alfred Morris were selected as alternates for the annual contest of the AFC and NFC’s best.

Alexander is in his third season as the Redskins special teams captain. A two-time recipient for Walter Payton Man of the Year, he has played eight different positions in six NFL seasons. He is the first Redskin since long snapper Ethan Albright (2007) selected to the Pro Bowl on the basis of special teams play.

In his second season as an offensive captain for the Redskins, Williams anchors an offensive line that has helped the Redskins average a league-high 162.3 rushing yards per game this season. He has helped rookie running back Alfred Morris shatter team rookie rushing records, as well as bring Morris to within 104 yards of breaking the Redskins’ single-season rushing record. Despite suffering several injuries this season, Williams is one start away – Sunday against the Cowboys – from having started all 16 games in a season for the first time in his career.

The Redskins have had at least one Pro Bowl player for 19 straight seasons.

Washington Redskins Game 3 Review: Despite Signs of Resilience, Redskins Suffer Heartbreaker Loss to the Bengals in Home Opener

Despite an unbelievable comeback fueled by the Washington Redskins’ (1-2) running game in the second half, the Cincinnati Bengals (2-1) tore through a debilitated Skins defense from start to finish as the Burgundy and Gold fell 38-31 at FedEx Field Sunday afternoon.

From the very first play, it was clear Sunday’s matchup was going to be a wild one. After the Bengals’ Brandon Tate returned the kickoff for 31 yards to the Cincinnati 27-yard line, the Bengals ran the wildcat on the first play of the game with a direct snap to rookie wide receiver Mohamed Sanu, who launched a 73-yard touchdown pass to A.J. Green, giving the Bengals a 7-0 lead in less than 20 seconds. [Read more...]

Davis and Williams suspensions latest black eye for Skins

Skins fans won’t have Trent Williams to kick around anymore this season. (photo by Brian Murphy)

Unless you live under a rock, you’ve probably heard by now that Washington Redskins TE Fred Davis and tackle Trent Williams were suspended for four games for violating the NFL Policy and Program for Substances of Abuse.  According to an NFL spokeperson, their suspensions begin immediately. They will be eligible to return to the Redskins’ active roster on Monday, January 2 following the team’s January 1 game against the Philadelphia Eagles. [Read more...]

Eagles expose Grossman as Redskins lose 20-13

Rex Grossman threw four interceptions and was replaced by John Beck late in the Redskins 20-13 loss to the Eagles. (photo by Brian Murphy)

The Washington Redskins flagship radio station — owned by Dan Snyder —  ran a promo for this week’s game with the Philadelphia Eagles during morning and afternoon drive-times all week, mentioning the “first place” Redskins.  Though true at the time, any fan of this team would have told you about the prematurity of the language of those ads.

Sunday, all the warts of this team were exposed, as Michael Vick carved this team up once again during the competitive portion of the game, and quarterback Rex Grossman threw four interceptions, resulting in a 20-13 victory for the visiting Eagles, salvaging Philly’s season for at least the next week. [Read more...]

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