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Best and Worst: Redskins Versus Texans

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At times, it was painful. At others, blissful. So goes the average game for an armchair quarterback. Here are a collection of the best and worst moments from Washington’s 17-6 loss to the Texans in Houston on Sunday.

Best Redskins Debut: Jason Hatcher
He registered his first sack in his first game, and was disruptive for much of it. He got nicked up in his first action in the burgundy and gold, but managed to return. He’s pretty good.

Worst Redskins Debut: Jay Gruden
I’m not throwing him under the bus by any means, but he looked nervous, and we looked vanilla. It was inexplicable to me why the Redskins didn’t just run the ball more. It’s ALWAYS inexplicable to me that the Redskins don’t run the ball more. I understand that this is the modern day, and not a Joe Gibbs offense – but it has NOTHING to do with that – it’s about doing what you’re good at, or doing well at. Alfred Morris had 91 yards on just 14 carries. Roy Helu had 46 yards on 4 carries! The Texans were struggling to keep the Redskins from running the ball. So for me, if Gruden was at all hesitant, or wanted to be conservative, why not just keep running the ball? They were only down by more than a 2-point converted touchdown, for two minutes of the game – it’s not like they had to panic. It seemed that Coach did. He’s allowed a couple of Mulligans.

Best Bad Facial Hair: Ryan Fitzpatrick
I’m not sure what that thing sticking out of his helmet was. It might have been facial hair, but he might also have been eating a squirrel. I really couldn’t tell.

Worst Mojo Ever: Yours Truly
Me: “This kid can kick the snot out of a ball, and we could use a 60-yarder right now.”
Commentator: “The punt is blocked and returned for a touchdown.”
Sorry everybody.

Best Pay-To-Play Scale: Jordan Reed
Hurt. Again. Already. Enough said.

Worst Bet, Best Fun: Yours Truly again
I really should have known better than to take my Redskins at the American football betting at William Hill page, but I thought MAYBE the Redskins would be able to beat a team that was actually worse than them last year. Obviously I was wrong. Obviously I made yet another donation to the “boy I love gambling on NFL football” fund. I’m very generous that way. It’s so much more fun to watch games with a vested interest. Or is that invested?

Best Summary of the Day’s Events: Jay Gruden
In his post game presser, Coach Gruden said, “Inexcusable to have turnovers in the Red Zone.” At the end of the day, despite the special teams gaffes and the giant 76-yard touchdown play given up by the defense, Washington would have been in a completely different position late in the 4th quarter if they had converted either of the two Red Zone opportunities that they fumbled.

Worst On-Site Job Interview: Niles Paul
After a good preseason in which he made some people take notice, Paul was thrust into the starter’s spotlight immediately when Reed got hurt. You know how in life when you have an opportunity to do something – don’t – and they say you dropped the ball? Well Niles paul literally dropped the ball, and by virtue, he proverbially dropped the ball too. It’s okay Nilkes, with Jordan’s injury history, you won’t wait long for your next interview anyway. It’s a soft tight end economy right now, and you have no competition.

Best Step Up Performance: Keenan Robinson
The young linebacker looked very at home on Sunday and made some great plays, registering 5 solo tackles and flying all around the field. While Robinson had shown promise to date, Redskins fans might not have known quite what they had in Robinson until just this week. But now they do.

Worst Moment of Realization: Redskins Nation
J.J. Watt is worthy of a franchise tag and however much money you can afford to pay him. Brian Orakpo, is not.

Best Misleading Statline: Robert Griffin III
RGIII’s day doesn’t look all that bad on paper – 29 of 37 for 267 yards. But this isn’t the early 2000’s and he isn’t Brad Johnson. Check offs are fine, short-to-intermediate passes too, but ultimately you have to take the governor of this offense if you expect it to be any good. It’s built for speed. The high completion rate is only impressive if all of the other numbers fall in line. And they win.

Worst Pontificating: Rich Tandler
On Twitter, Tandler “postulated” before the game, “From what I’ve gathered at #Redskins Park: Preseason offense = my beat up old minivan. Offense we will see today = new Porsche.” Ummmm… Best keep gathering Rich.

Up next? Jaguars / Redskins at Fed Ex. Stay tuned.

Hail to the Redskins.

More By Mark Solway

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