So the Redskins are 2.5 point underdogs to a 1-5 team? Well there’s some of that league-wide respect the Redskins have come to know. Here are five things the Redskins can and should do to improve their chances of victory against Carolina.
1) Get Ryan Torain the ball at least 25 times. I don’t care about the ‘3-headed’ monster, or the fact that all of the backs have different styles and attributes – get your hottest back the football. When Torain gets the ball 20 times, he averages over 5 yards a carry at approximately 120 yards – so feed him early, feed him often, and feed him plenty.
2) Provide tight end blocking help WHENEVER they can. There is no ‘replacing’ Trent Williams at left tackle with our bench, and Sean Locklear is going to need some help. Chris Cooley being out ensures that Logan Paulsen will see a lot of playing time, so let him do what he does well – block. Line him up on the left side with Locklear as much as you can and let him help his tackle.
3) Neutralize Cam Newton. I don’t think you CAN stop a guy with Newton’s vast compliment of skills, so limit him, limit his effectiveness – make him do things that he isn’t comfortable doing. Brian Orakpo and Ryan Kerrigan will both need to show a little more discipline than they did last week, and stay in their rushing lanes. Keep Newton in the pocket, and shut down the receivers – he WILL panic and throw picks.
4) Eat clock. A heavy running attack will do that anyway, but playing clock manager from the very first whistle will help the Redskins on Sunday. Not only do they establish an offensive identity – but they keep Newton off the field; both equally important for a victory.
5) Help John Beck. I get that he talks a good game, I get that he’s been around awhile, but you have to treat this game like you have a rookie quarterback going into the game; ostensibly, that’s all Beck is. Don’t put him in awkward situations, don’t put him in constant third and longs – be mindful of the fact that he needs help to be successful against Carolina. If the Redskins can establish the run and get the Panthers defense going backwards a little bit, then Beck will have an added second to make reads and make plays. Ease him into it. Don’t be afraid to run the ball UNSUCCESSFULLY early on, knowing that it will pay dividends later on – knowing that it will help your quarterback ease in for at least a quarter and get his NFL bearings.
That’s all the Redskins have to do – those five things. Do them, and victory is ours.
I guess if it was that simple, they wouldn’t need to play the games.
Hail brothers and sisters!
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More By Mark Solway
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