April 21, 2021

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.

Then the end of the first quarter came, and it brought an end to the Redskins’ hopes of winning. The Panthers took control and did what good teams should do against inferior opponents — demolish them.

Along with that, here are five more takeaways from the Redskins’ loss to the Panthers

1. Cam Newton Happened

There’s a reason the former Heisman Trophy winner is now being considered for the NFL’s MVP Award. Newton has been the driving force behind Carolina’s 10-0 start and he showed Sunday why he might be the best player in the league. He threw five touchdowns to five different receivers and finished the day with 246 yards through the air. The Redskins’ defense got torched by a superior quarterback.

2. Where’s The Running Game?

Just when we thought the Redskins were going to be firing up the ground-game, they turned it off and tried to get into a shootout with their opponents. Chris Thompson, Alfred Morris and Matt Jones combined for 10 yards on 11 carries. When asked how they can improve the rushing attack, Trent Williams said it best after the game: “attempts.”

3. Ball Security An Issue

The Redskins coughed the football up five times (lost four) and Cousins threw another interception on over/under-thrown football (depending on which receiver you think was the intended target). No matter who you play, it’s hard to win a football game when you turn the ball over five times. This has been a huge problem for the Redskins, particularly on the road, and it will continue to be their Achilles heal for the rest of the season.

4. Road Woes

Most teams try to be road warriors, but the Redskins should just try to break even when playing away from FedExField. They’ve lost 18 of their last 19 road games and most haven’t been pretty. If this team manages to steal the NFC East and make it to the playoffs, they’ll lose the Wild Card Game since it won’t be played in Landover, Md. Jay Gruden needs to figure out a way to make this team more prepared for playing on the road.

5. Don’t Blame The Refs

In a game where they lose by seven, sure give the refs from flack for blown calls. In a game where the Redskins lost by 28? Blaming the refs is a cop out and is disrespectful to the Panthers. Chris Culliver’s personal foul was a bad call, but that’s not a game changer. Washington’s offense was sputtering and the Panthers were rolling regardless. The Redskins played poorly Sunday and that’s what lost them the game.

About Brian Skinnell

Brian Skinnell is a Staff Writer for District Sports Page covering the Redskins, Nationals and college football. He is a born-and-raised follower of Washington, D.C. sports, “The” Ohio State Buckeyes and auto racing. A graduate of Shepherd University in December of 2014, he has a degree in Recreation and Leisure Studies with a Concentration in Sports Communications. Prior to joining District Sports Page (for his second stint), he spent time with Rant Sports, Yahoo Sports and the Washington Redskins. For his day job, he is an Editor for Team Velocity Marketing. Follow him on Twitter @Brian_Skinnell.

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