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  • Flashback Friday: This Day in 1984

    On this day, October 14th in 1984, the Washington Redskins hammered the Dallas Cowboys 34-14.

    Joe Theismann may have only been 11 of 17 for 182 yards, but 3 of those passes were touchdowns. Two of them were hauled in by Clint Didier, and the third was an 80-yard bomb to Calvin Muhammad.

    Monte Coleman also picked off a Gary Hogeboom pass and returned it 49 yards for a touchdown.

    The Redskins went on to finish the season 11-5 and won the NFC East. They lost to the Bears in the playoffs.

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    The Loser Papers – 2016 – Edition III

    This is the third edition of TLP in as many weeks, and even though we only meet the Ravens every four years, many of our readers look forward to this edition as much as any chronicling the defeat of an NFC East opponent. So we want to get right to the finger-pointing and scape-goating going on this morning in the wake of yesterday’s game. From the pages of The Baltimore Sun:

    John Harbaugh fires offensive coordinator Marc Trestman

    Marc Trestman’s habit of abandoning the run game factored prominently in his dismissal.

    For the second time in five years – and again after a regular-season loss to the Washington Redskins – Ravens coach John Harbaugh has decided to fire his offensive coordinator in an effort to jumpstart a struggling unit.

    He can only hope today’s decision works as well as it did in 2012.

    The Ravens fired offensive coordinator Marc Trestman Monday, a day after the play caller curiously abandoned a productive running game during a 16-10 loss to the Redskins.

    Trestman, who replaced Gary Kubiak after the 2014 season, lasted all of 21 games as the Ravens’ offensive play caller.

     Quarterbacks coach Marty Mornhinweg, a former offensive coordinator of the San Francisco 49ers, Philadelphia Eagles and New York Jets and head coach of the Detroit Lions, will take over as the play caller. He’ll become quarterback Joe Flacco’s fifth offensive coordinator in as many seasons.

    “After very careful consideration, I have decided to make a change to our offensive coaching staff and have replaced Marc Trestman with Marty Mornhinweg as offensive coordinator for the rest of the season,” Harbaugh said in a statement. “My obligations are to the team, the organization and the fans to be the very best team we can be. Today we find ourselves one game out of the division and conference lead after experiencing two tough losses at home. We will work to be better in every aspect of our football team. Our expectations are high, and we look forward to fulfilling them.”

    “I appreciate and respect the efforts and contributions Marc has made to the team since his arrival. Marc is a good person and an excellent football coach.”

    The turnover at offensive coordinator started with Harbaugh’s decision to fire his longtime play caller Cam Cameron in December 2012 after a 31-28 overtime loss to the Redskins. The Ravens were 9-4 at the time and in first place in the AFC North. Jim Caldwell’s ascension into the offensive coordinator role was ultimately viewed as one of the key moves in the Ravens’ Super Bowl run as Flacco played the best football of his career.

    Today’s decision to fire Trestman, the former head coach of the Chicago Bears, was less surprising than the Cameron move. The frustration in the locker room about the offense’s struggles was palpable following Sunday’s loss to the Redskins, which drops the Ravens to 3-2 after a 3-0 start.

    Harbaugh did not criticize Trestman on Sunday, but he did say, “I think we have to find our offense. We’ve had that all year, basically. That’s been the story of the season. We can’t find continuity on offense.”

    Flacco, meanwhile, seemed to be as frustrated as he’s been in a long time.

    “I’m not going to get into all that,” Flacco said, when asked if he felt changes needed to be made. “We’re not playing well enough. We’re not making plays. … We are running off the field way too much.”

    Against the Redskins and their 30th-ranked run defense, the Ravens ran the ball 11 times for 74 yards in the first quarter. However, the next three quarters, they had only seven more designed runs. Flacco threw the ball 46 times a week after throwing 52 passes in another close loss to the Oakland Raiders.

    Trestman came to Baltimore with a reputation as a pass-first offensive coordinator, and he lived up to that. The primary complaint about his play calling was he abandoned the run too quickly. Last year, the Ravens set a franchise-low with 383 rushing attempts. Their offensive line struggled to run block last year and the Ravens fell behind regularly during a 5-11 season, which often forced Trestman’s hand.

    The Ravens’ offense finished last season ranked 14th in total offense, tallied the second most net yards (5,749) in franchise history and set a franchise record by averaging 266.9 passing yards per game. But it was impossible really to evaluate the job Trestman did as the Ravens started four different quarterbacks and had significant injuries to many of their prominent offensive players.

    This year began with high hopes as the Ravens boasted of having as much depth at the skilled positions as they’ve had in a long time. However in three of their first five games, the Ravens have managed just one offensive touchdown. Whether it was a struggling running game, a lack of big plays down the field or a flurry of penalties, the offense has been its own worst enemy so far.

    And Trestman ultimately paid the price.


    Ravens insist offense chugged along even without wide receiver Steve Smith Sr. in loss to Redskins

    Edward Lee

    Edward LeeContact ReporterThe Baltimore Sun

    Did the Ravens miss wide receiver Steve Smith Sr. on Sunday in loss to Redskins? Depends on who you ask.

    The Ravens are not the type of team to acknowledge that the loss of one player can impact what they do on offense, defense or special teams.

    The Ravens stuck to that perspective after a game in which wide receiver Steve Smith Sr. left in Sunday’s first quarter and did not return.

    Entering the game, Smith had led the offense in catches (24) and yards (281). He caught three passes for 29 yards before injuring his ankle with less than three minutes left in the opening period of Sunday’s 16-10 loss to the Redskins.

    Coach John Harbaugh declined to consider whether Smith’s absence had an effect on the team.

    “I didn’t really have a gauge or a meter on that,” he said.

    The loss of Smith seemed palpable. Without Smith, quarterback Joe Flacco threw for a season-low 210 yards. Although wide receiver Mike Wallace led the offense in targets with 11 and yards with 63, tight ends Dennis Pitta and Crockett Gillmore and fullback Kyle Juszczyk had more targets, receptions and yards than Breshad Perriman, the next highest wide receiver with five targets, two catches, and 11 yards.

    If Harbaugh was not willing to admit that the team greatly missed Smith, Washington strong safety Duke Ihenacho was.

    “It was easier,” he said. “Obviously, everybody knows what kind of player he is – a Hall of Fame player, veteran guy, fiery guy, emotional guy. I feel like, when he went out, part of their emotion went out with him. I think it definitely had something to do with it.”

    Smith refused to talk to reporters after the loss. Wallace followed his coach’s cue and said the Ravens did not have to change much when Smith left the game.

    “When you lose a player like that, it is obviously going to take something away from you, but I don’t think anybody was down,” Wallace said. “You just have to finish the game. Breshad made a great play. He just didn’t come down with it. It was just one of those unfortunate days. We have been on the good side, and we have been on the bad side of it. We just have to keep grinding, and I think we will be OK.”

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    Flashback Friday: This Day in 2007

    On this day, October 7th in 2007, the Washington Redskins crushed the Detroit Lions 34-3.

    Jason Campbell was a near perfect 23 of 29 for 248 yards. He threw two touchdown passes for a stellar quarterback rating of 128.3. Antwaan Randle El led all Redskin receivers with 100 yards on 7 receptions.

    Not only did Carlos Rogers actually catch a ball that hit him in the hands, he returned it 61 yards for a touchdown (this was before getting his eyes fixed of course – if you remember, he couldn’t catch a cold).

    Sean Taylor had a 35-yard interception return.

    Check out this clip of Sean gunning off the Lions as the Skins come out of the tunnel for the game and getting jacked up before the game even starts – near the end of the clip. RIP brother – you are certainly missed and never forgotten. Thanks YouTube…

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    The Loser Papers – 2016 – Edition II

    While every edition of TLP is fun, the editors can’t help but feel that something is lost when the chronicling a beating of those perennial sad-sacks, the Cleveland Browns. Had the opposing QB been named Bob, we might feel differently, but as it is, we had this edition pre-printed before the season began, and are just filling in the details and particulars. From the pages of The Cleveland Plain Dealer:

    Browns lose 31-20 to Redskins after giving the game away on 3 straight turnovers

    Mary Kay Cabot, By Mary Kay Cabot, The Plain Dealer
    on October 02, 2016 at 4:05 PM, updated October 02, 2016 at 7:49 PM

    LANDOVER, Md. — Duke Johnson believes he recovered his fourth-quarter fumble,  but he can’t argue the Browns gave the game to the Redskins.

    They turned the ball over on three straight second-half drives to lose 31-20. The Redkins scored 14 fourth-quarter points off those takeaways.

    The loss erased the Browns’ 20-17 third-quarter lead after they stormed back from a 14-0 first-quarter deficit. It also dropped them 0-4 and left them as the only winless team in the NFL. The Redskins improved to 2-2.

    The giveaways were fumbles by Malcolm Johnson and Duke Johnson, and an interception by Cody Kessler, who was picked off by cornerback Josh Norman on a pass intended for Terrelle Pryor.

    But the Duke Johnson fumble was controversial, because the running back came up with the ball just a split-second after he coughed it up. Terrelle Pryor and others were steamed after it was awared to the Redskins.

    Line judge Sarah Thomas explained to Hue Jackson that the Redskins had it before Johnson held it up, and that it was reviewed upstairs.

    Johnson said that to his knowledge, the Redskins never recovered it. It was all his. But what could he do?

    The Redskins failed to cash in on Duke’s fumble, but they converted Kessler’s pick into a 1-yard touchdown run by Matt Jones that produced the final margin with 4:25 remaining.

    The turnover that really killed them, however, was Malcolm Johnson’s fumble with 1:07 left in the third quarter when the Browns had driven to the 16 and were threatening to extend their 20-17 lead. A college tight end, it was Johnson’s first carry at the college or professional level.

    The Redskins recovered at the 9 and embarked on a 91-yard touchdown drive that culminated in a 5-yard TD pass from Kirk Cousins to running back Chris Thompson. That put the Redskins on top again, 24-20, with 10:39 left in the game.

    Then came Duke Johnson’s fumble near midfield after a 7-yard run, but the Browns defense held and forced a punt.

    Unfortunately for Kessler, however, he was pinned back at his 2. On his second play, he threw slightly behind Pryor and Norman picked it off. Jones, who ran all over the Browns’ defense 22 times for 117 yards, peeled off a 16-yard run to the 1 and then punched it on the next play.

    Kessler completed 28-of-40 attempts for 223 yards with 1 TD and 1 INT for an 81.6 rating. Cousins completed 21-of-27 for 183 yards with 3 TDs and one pick. His rating was 116.5.

    Cousins quick-snaps Browns for TD

    Officials called for Jamar Taylor to be checked for a concussion on the sidelines just before the Thompson TD, and Cousins quick-snapped the ball and fired it in to a wide-open Thompson on the right side.  On the next drive, they stripped Duke Johnson too.

    Redskins jump out to 14-0 first-quarter lead

    The Redskins jumped out quickly with touchdown passes from Cousins to tight end Jordan Reed on each of their first two drives.

    Cousins marched the Redskins 75 yards in 12 plays on his opening campaign, hitting Reed with an 8-yard TD pass in the end zone over safety Jordan Poyer to make it 7-0. Cousins completed 7-of-7 passes on the drive for 52 yards.

    On his second drive, Cousins went deep right for DeSean Jackson and drew a 50-yard pass interference call against safety Jordan Poyer to the Browns’ 30.

    Eight plays later, Cousins found Reed again, this time over linebacker Demario Davis at the left side of the end zone. That made it 14-0 Redskins with 27 seconds left in the half.

    But the Browns, establishing themselves as a big-play offense, stormed right back with two straight touchdowns of their own to tie it 14-14 on a 2-yard run by Isaiah Crowell and a 9-yard catch by Terrelle Pryor.

    The Redskins went up 17-14 on a 49-yard field goal with 2:29 left in the half. But Browns new kicker Cody Parkey made a 51-yarder as time expired in the half to knot it at 17.  Pryor was quick to congratulate Parkey after the kick.

    The Browns took their first lead of the game, 20-17, on a 45-yard field goal by Parkey with 9:25 left in the third quarter. Parkey made the kick after being pushed back 5 yards for a false start. He received high-fives from numerous teammates back on the sidelines.

    Crowell’s big day

    Crowell ran hard all afternoon and gave the Redskins’ challenged run defense fits. He finished with 15 runs for 112 yards. He had carries of 17, 19 and 18 yards, the last setting up Parkey’s go-ahead 45-yard field goal on the opening drive of the second half.

    The Redskins were tied for 24th against the run heading in.  Crowell also caught a 14-yard pass in the third quarter to the Redskins 16, but Malcolm Johnson fumbled the ball away at the Redskins’ 9. Crowell, who came in as the NFL’s second-leading rusher, became the first Browns running back since Earnest Byner in 1985 to have at least 60 yards in each of the first four games.

    Terrelle Pryor’s 1st career TD catch

    Pryor’s 9-yard TD catch from Kessler that tied 14-14 was the first of his career. It was also the first touchdown pass for rookie Kessler. Pryor beat Will Blackmon at the right side of the end zone.

    Afterward, he celebrated with the LeBron James chalk toss, but he did so using the ball as a prop, which earned him a 15-yard flag for unsportsmanlike conduct. The TD cashed in on Jamar Taylor’s interception and 29-yard return.

    Jamar Taylor’s 2nd career pick

    Taylor, acquired in a draft-day trade with the Dolphins, went the first three years of his career without an interception. Now, he’s had one in each of the past two weeks, including one in Miami last week.

    Joe Haden active, Alvin Bailey benched

    Browns cornerback Joe Haden was active despite his groin injury, and right guard Alvin Bailey was benched following his arrest for driving while impaired early Monday morning.

    John Greco went back to right guard, and Austin Reiter, signed off the Redskins’ practice squad about 10 days ago, started at center in place of Cam Erving (bruised lung).

    Linebacker Corey Lemonier, who strip-sacked Ryan Tannehill near the end of last Sunday’s 30-24 overtime loss to the Dolphins, returned to the team and played. He was absent Friday for a personal reason and was doubtful.

    In addition, free safety Ibraheim Campbell, who was listed as questionable, was inactive with his hamstring injury and replaced by rookie Derrick Kindred.

    As expected, cornerback Tramon Williams, who started last week while Haden was idle, was inactive with his sprained shoulder.

    The other inactives were players who had already been ruled out: Josh McCown (broken collarbone), Corey Coleman (broken hand), Erving, rookie tight end Seth DeValve (knee), and defensive lineman Carl Nassib.

    For the Redskins, inactives were receiver Josh Doctson, starting cornerback Bashaud Breeland and starting left guard Shawn Lauvao, a former Brown. Quinton Dunbar started for Breeland and Arie Kouandjio started for Lauvao.

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    Keys To Victory & Gameday: October 2nd, 2016 – Cleveland Browns @ Washington Redskins – 1:00PM EST

    Keys To Victory

    Keys To Victory

    The Washington Redskins are currently #5 in total offense and #2 in passing offense.  The Cleveland Browns are giving up 403 yards of offense and 28 points per game.  Those looking for an improved rushing attack may be waiting another week as the Browns pass defense is its weak link.  The red zone scoring offense should receive a major boost this week.

    Conversely, the Cleveland Browns are scoring 18 points per game while allowing 28, however, they are averaging over 6 yards per carry with Isaiah Crowell and Duke Johnson.  Quarterback-turned-receiver Terrell Pryor is a dual threat, averaging over 17 yards per reception.  Corey Coleman only has 7 receptions but he is averaging 24.7 yards per catch and has two touchdowns.

    Fortunately, the Redskins have the secondary to cover Cleveland Man-to-Man with Norman and man-zone on the other side with Dunbar or whoever is starting and an actual free safety in Ihenacho as opposed to a converted and learning on the job corner in Hall.

    Clearly and convincingly, the task at hand is to pass fifty times and stop the run.  Expect a lot of blitzing into the A and B gaps to contain rushing between the tackles.  It will be critical for the outside linebackers to not overpursue.  They must contain the edges and force runners back into the middle of the field.

    Special teams needs to continue to be special.  The Redskins, who lead the league in fumbles caused, need to continue to force turnovers.

    Overall, this is a game the Redskins should dominate and it would not be surprising to see them post 40+ points.

    While not necessarily a key to victory, it would also be a great game for the defense to figure out how to stop the run as Cleveland will do a lot of it.

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    Tale Of The Tape: October 2nd, 2016 – Cleveland Browns @ Washington Redskins



    Injury Report

    Player Pos Type Class Details
    DeAngelo Hall CB Knee I-R Hall suffered a torn ACL in his right knee and has been placed on the injured reserve list.
    Kory Lichtensteiger G Calf I-R Lichtensteiger has been placed on injured reserve with a calf injury.
    Kedric Golston DE Hamstring I-R Golston suffered a hamstring injury and has been placed on the injured reserve list.
    Derek Carrier TE Knee I-R Carrier continues to recover from a torn ACL and has been placed on the PUP list. He is eligible to return October 23rd against the Lions.
    Reggie Diggs WR Knee I-R Diggs continues to recover from a knee injury and has been placed on the injured reserve list, ending his season.
    Keith Marshall RB Elbow I-R Marshall sprained his left elbow during the preseason and has been placed on the season-ending injured reserve list.
    Kevin Bowen T Undisclosed I-R Bowen has been placed on the injured reserve with an undisclosed injury.
    Steven Daniels LB Shoulder I-R Daniels had surgery to repair a torn labrum in his shoulder and has been placed on the season-ending injured reserve list.
    Shawn Lauvao OL Ankle out Lauvao departed the last game with an ankle injury and will not play Sunday against the Browns.
    Dashaun Phillips CB Hamstring out Phillips is nursing a hamstring injury and will not be available Sunday against the Browns.
    Bashaud Breeland CB Ankle out Breeland suffered a strained tendon in his right ankle during the last game and will not play Sunday against the Browns.
    Josh Doctson WR Achilles out Doctson is dealing with an Achilles’ tendon injury and will be inactive for Sunday’s game against the Browns.
    Junior Galette LB Achilles out Galette is expected to miss the entire 2016-2017 season after suffering a season-ending Achilles injury.
    Silas Redd RB Suspension out Redd Jr. has been issued an indefinite suspension for violating the league’s substance abuse policy. He will miss an undetermined amount of time.
    Josh Norman CB Illness questionable Norman is dealing with an illness and it is unclear if he will participate in Sunday’s game against the Browns.
    Trent Williams T Knee questionable Williams continues to battle a lingering knee injury and his status against the Browns on Sunday is uncertain.
    Trent Murphy LB Elbow questionable Murphy is nursing injuries to his elbow and shoulder and it is undetermined if he will suit up against the Browns on Sunday.
    Kendall Reyes DE Groin questionable Reyes sat out the last game due to a groin injury and it is unknown if he will suit up against the Browns on Sunday.
    Martrell Spaight LB Concussion questionable Spaight has missed the last two games due to concussion-like symptoms and his availability against the Browns on Sunday is in question.
    DeSean Jackson WR Knee probable Jackson is nursing a knee injury but is expected to play against the Browns on Sunday.
    Matt Jones RB Head probable Jones sustained a head injury during Week 3 but will likely be available for Sunday’s game against the Browns.


    Player Pos Type Class Details
    Patrick Murray K Knee I-R Murray is on injured reserve due to a knee injury and is expected to miss the remainder of the season.
    Robert Griffin QB Shoulder I-R Griffin III sustained a fractured coracoid bone in his left shoulder and has been placed on the injured reserve list. He will be re-evaluated in three-to-four weeks but is eligible to return November 6th against the Cowboys.
    Nile Lawrence-Stample DL Shoulder I-R Lawrence-Stample has been placed on the injured reserve list with a shoulder injury, ending his season.
    Rajion Neal RB Knee I-R Neal sustained a season-ending knee injury and has been placed on the injured reserve list.
    Glenn Winston RB Shoulder I-R Winston suffered a season-ending shoulder injury and was placed on the injured reserve list.
    Dennis Parks WR Undisclosed I-R Parks was placed on the injured reserve list due to an unspecified injury and is expected to miss the remainder of the season.
    Dylan Wynn DL Ankle I-R Wynn is sidelined due to an ankle injury and was placed on the season ending injured reserve list.
    Rannell Hall WR Leg I-R Hall has been placed on the season-ending injured reserve list with a fractured leg.
    Josh Gordon WR Personal out Gordon has elected to enter an in-person rehabilitation facility and will miss an undetermined amount of time.
    Josh McCown QB Collarbone out McCown has a broken left collarbone and will miss an extended amount of time.
    Corey Coleman WR Hand out Coleman suffered a broken hand and is expected to miss four-to-six weeks.
    Carl Nassib DL Hand out Nassib will require surgery to repair a broken hand and is likely to miss a few weeks of action.
    Cameron Erving OL Lung out Erving left the last game with a pulmonary contusion and is expected to miss three-to-four weeks of action.
    Desmond Bryant DT Pectoral out Bryant had surgery to repair a torn pectoral muscle and is expected to miss the entire 2016-2017 season.
    Armonty Bryant DE Suspension out Bryant was suspended four games by the NFL for violating the NFL policy on performance enhancing substances. He is expected to return October 9th against the Patriots.
    Tramon Williams CB Shoulder doubtful Williams left the last game with an AC joint shoulder sprain and is not expected to play Sunday against the Redskins.
    Nate Orchard LB Ankle questionable Orchard was forced from the last game due to an ankle injury and it is undetermined if he will play Sunday against the Redskins.
    Seth Devalve TE Undisclosed questionable DeValve is dealing with an unannounced injury and his status against the Redskins on Sunday is uncertain.
    Duke Johnson RB Undisclosed questionable Johnson Jr. was removed from the last game due to an unspecified injury and his status against the Redskins on Sunday is in question.
    Ibraheim Campbell DB Hamstring questionable Campbell sat out the last game due to a hamstring injury and it is undetermined if he will play against the Redskins on Sunday.
    Isaiah Crowell RB Knee probable Crowell is hampered by a knee injury but is expected to be available Sunday against the Redskins.
    Joe Haden DB Groin probable Haden missed the last game with a groin injury but is expected to suit up Sunday against the Redskins.
    Cody Kessler QB Arm probable Kessler is expected to play Sunday against the Redskins despite an arm injury.


    No. Player Age Pos G GS QBrec Cmp Att Cmp% Yds TD TD% Int Int% Lng Y/A AY/A Y/C Y/G Rate QBR Sk Yds NY/A ANY/A Sk% 4QC GWD
    8 Kirk Cousins 28 qb 3 3 1-2-0 79 124 63.7 989 3 2.4 3 2.4 57 8.0 7.4 12.5 329.7 86.4 69.36 4 28 7.51 6.92 3.1 1 1
    5 Tress Way 26 p 3 0 1 1 100.0 31 0 0.0 0 0.0 31 31.0 31.0 31.0 10.3 118.7 0 0 31.00 31.00 0.0
    Team Total 27.2 3 1-2-0 80 125 64.0 1020 3 2.4 3 2.4 57 8.2 7.6 12.8 340.0 87.4 4 28 7.69 7.11 3.1 1 1
    Opp Total 3 74 105 70.5 942 4 3.8 3 2.9 9.0 8.45 12.7 314.0 99.0 7 37 8.1 7.6 6.3


    No. Player Age Pos G GS QBrec Cmp Att Cmp% Yds TD TD% Int Int% Lng Y/A AY/A Y/C Y/G Rate QBR Sk Yds NY/A ANY/A Sk% 4QC GWD
    5 Cody Kessler 23 qb 1 1 0-1-0 21 33 63.6 244 0 0.0 0 0.0 40 7.4 7.4 11.6 244.0 85.9 61.66 3 17 6.31 6.31 8.3
    13 Josh McCown 37 qb 1 1 0-1-0 20 33 60.6 260 2 6.1 2 6.1 47 7.9 6.4 13.0 260.0 80.4 85.65 3 18 6.72 5.33 8.3
    10 Robert Griffin 26 qb 1 1 0-1-0 12 26 46.2 190 0 0.0 1 3.8 58 7.3 5.6 15.8 190.0 55.0 33.43 3 22 5.79 4.24 10.3
    17 Terrelle Pryor 27 wr 3 3 3 5 60.0 35 0 0.0 0 0.0 26 7.0 7.0 11.7 11.7 81.2 58.77 1 1 5.67 5.67 16.7
    Team Total 25.4 3 0-3-0 56 97 57.7 729 2 2.1 3 3.1 58 7.5 6.5 13.0 243.0 75.5 10 58 6.27 5.38 9.3
    Opp Total 3 72 121 59.5 899 7 5.8 4 3.3 7.4 7.10 12.5 299.7 88.1 3 16 7.1 6.8 2.4

    Rushing & Receiving

    No. Player Age Pos G GS Att Yds TD Lng Y/A Y/G A/G Tgt Rec Yds Y/R TD Lng R/G Y/G Ctch% YScm RRTD Fmb
    31 Matt Jones 23 rb 3 3 37 150 1 14 4.1 50.0 12.3 4 4 27 6.8 0 9 1.3 9.0 100.0% 177 1 1
    25 Chris Thompson 26 3 0 12 47 1 9 3.9 15.7 4.0 8 6 66 11.0 0 38 2.0 22.0 75.0% 113 1 0
    8 Kirk Cousins 28 qb 3 3 6 23 0 10 3.8 7.7 2.0 23 0 1
    22 Robert Kelley 24 1 0 4 7 0 5 1.8 7.0 4.0 7 0 0
    80 Jamison Crowder 23 wr 3 2 0 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 25 16 175 10.9 2 55 5.3 58.3 64.0% 175 2 1
    86 Jordan Reed 26 te 3 2 0 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 25 16 190 11.9 0 25 5.3 63.3 64.0% 190 0 0
    11 DeSean Jackson 30 wr 3 3 0 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 23 14 238 17.0 1 44 4.7 79.3 60.9% 238 1 0
    88 Pierre Garcon 30 wr 3 3 0 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 20 13 135 10.4 0 20 4.3 45.0 65.0% 135 0 0
    85 Vernon Davis 32 te 3 2 0 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 6 6 71 11.8 0 32 2.0 23.7 100.0% 71 0 0
    18 Josh Doctson 24 2 0 0 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 6 2 66 33.0 0 57 1.0 33.0 33.3% 66 0 0
    47 Quinton Dunbar 24 3 0 0 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 1 1 31 31.0 0 31 0.3 10.3 100.0% 31 0 1
    14 Ryan Grant 26 3 0 0 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 3 1 5 5.0 0 5 0.3 1.7 33.3% 5 0 0
    84 Niles Paul 27 3 0 0 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 1 1 16 16.0 0 16 0.3 5.3 100.0% 16 0 0
    Team Total 27.2 3 59 227 2 14 3.8 75.7 19.7 122 80 1020 12.8 3 57 26.7 340.0 1247 5 4
    Opp Total 3 81 369 7 4.6 123.0 27.0 74 905 12.2 4 24.7 301.7 1274 11 7


    No. Player Age Pos G GS Att Yds TD Lng Y/A Y/G A/G Tgt Rec Yds Y/R TD Lng R/G Y/G Ctch% YScm RRTD Fmb
    34 Isaiah Crowell 23 rb 3 3 45 274 2 85 6.1 91.3 15.0 4 3 31 10.3 0 15 1.0 10.3 75.0% 305 2 0
    29 Duke Johnson 23 3 0 16 103 0 17 6.4 34.3 5.3 17 12 84 7.0 0 28 4.0 28.0 70.6% 187 0 0
    10 Robert Griffin 26 qb 1 1 5 37 0 20 7.4 37.0 5.0 37 0 1
    17 Terrelle Pryor 27 wr 3 3 4 21 1 15 5.3 7.0 1.3 31 14 244 17.4 0 44 4.7 81.3 45.2% 265 1 0
    16 Andrew Hawkins 30 wr 3 1 2 0 0 1 0.0 0.0 0.7 10 5 42 8.4 0 16 1.7 14.0 50.0% 42 0 0
    5 Cody Kessler 23 qb 1 1 2 -1 0 0 -0.5 -1.0 2.0 -1 0 2
    13 Josh McCown 37 qb 1 1 2 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 2.0 0 0 1
    82 Gary Barnidge 31 te 3 3 0 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 13 9 103 11.4 0 26 3.0 34.3 69.2% 103 0 0
    19 Corey Coleman 22 wr 2 2 0 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 13 7 173 24.7 2 58 3.5 86.5 53.8% 173 2 0
    42 Malcolm Johnson 24 fb 3 1 0 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 3 3 12 4.0 0 6 1.0 4.0 100.0% 12 0 0
    80 Ricardo Louis 22 wr 3 1 0 0 0 0 0.0 0.0 4 3 40 13.3 0 28 1.0 13.3 75.0% 40 0 1
    Team Total 25.4 3 76 434 3 85 5.7 144.7 25.3 97 56 729 13.0 2 58 18.7 243.0 1163 5 8
    Opp Total 3 85 328 2 3.9 109.3 28.3 72 883 12.3 7 24.0 294.3 1211 9 3

    Kick & Punt Returns

    No. Player Age Pos G GS Ret Yds TD Lng Y/R Rt Yds TD Lng Y/Rt APYd
    80 Jamison Crowder 23 wr 3 2 5 105 0 50 21.0 280
    25 Chris Thompson 26 3 0 2 53 0 28 26.5 166
    41 Will Blackmon 32 3 0 1 29 0 29 29.0 29
    47 Quinton Dunbar 24 3 0 1 0 0 0 0.0 31
    84 Niles Paul 27 3 0 1 14 0 14 14.0 30
    Team Total 27.2 3 6 105 0 50 17.5 4 96 0 29 24.0 1455
    Opp Total 3 2 21 0 10.5 4 85 0 21.3


    No. Player Age Pos G GS Ret Yds TD Lng Y/R Rt Yds TD Lng Y/Rt APYd
    25 George Atkinson 24 3 0 2 34 0 21 17.0 34
    41 Tracy Howard 22 3 0 2 30 0 17 15.0 30
    23 Joe Haden 27 db 2 2 1 13 0 13 13.0 13
    29 Duke Johnson 23 3 0 1 19 0 19 19.0 206
    33 Jordan Poyer 25 db 3 3 1 0 0 0 0.0 0
    22 Tramon Williams 33 db 3 2 1 0 0 0 0.0 0
    Team Total 25.4 3 3 13 0 13 4.3 5 83 0 21 16.6 1241
    Opp Total 3 7 94 0 13.4 5 149 0 29.8

    Kicking & Punting

    3 Dustin Hopkins 26 k 3 0 3 3 5 5 3 3 11 11 100.0% 5 5 100.0%
    5 Tress Way 26 p 3 0 5 193 56 0 38.6
    Team Total 27.2 3 3 3 5 5 3 3 11 11 100.0% 5 5 100.0% 5 193 56 0 38.6
    Opp Total 3 5 5 100.0% 11 11 100.0% 8 391 0 48.9


    4 Britton Colquitt 31 p 3 0 15 700 59 0 46.7
    3 Cody Parkey 24 k 1 0 1 1 5 2 6 3 50.0% 1 1 100.0%
    2 Patrick Murray 25 k 2 0 1 1 1 2 1 50.0% 4 3 75.0%
    Team Total 25.4 3 2 2 5 2 1 8 4 50.0% 5 4 80.0% 15 700 59 0 46.7
    Opp Total 3 7 6 85.7% 8 8 100.0% 15 729 0 48.6

    Defense & Fumbles

    No. Player Age Pos G GS Int Yds TD Lng PD FF Fmb FR Yds TD Sk Tkl Ast Sfty
    54 Mason Foster 27 lb 3 3 18 11
    30 David Bruton 29 s 3 3 0 0 0 0 2 1.0 17 6
    26 Bashaud Breeland 24 cb 3 3 1 26 0 26 3 15 4
    51 William Compton 27 lb 3 3 0 0 0 0 2 10 15
    24 Josh Norman 29 cb 3 3 0 0 0 0 7 1 0 0 0 0 12 5
    23 DeAngelo Hall 33 s 3 3 0 0 0 0 1 10 6
    91 Ryan Kerrigan 28 lb 3 3 1 0 0 0 0 1.5 9 0
    92 Chris Baker 29 de 3 3 1 0 0 0 0 1.0 5 6
    36 Su’a Cravens 21 3 0 1 2 0 2 2 6 4
    93 Trent Murphy 26 3 0 2 0 0 0 0 3.0 4 6
    94 Preston Smith 24 lb 3 3 0 0 0 0 1 4 5
    35 Dashaun Phillips 25 cb 3 2 0 0 1 0 0 4 2
    99 Ricky Jean-Francois 30 3 0 0.5 2 5
    47 Quinton Dunbar 24 3 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 3 0
    73 Evander Hood 29 de 3 1 2 3
    29 Duke Ihenacho 27 2 0 3 0
    68 Cullen Jenkins 35 2 0 3 0
    41 Will Blackmon 32 3 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 2
    64 Kedric Golston 33 nt 2 2 2 0
    97 Kendall Reyes 27 1 0 1 1
    20 Greg Toler 31 cb 3 1 0 0 1 0 0 1 0
    8 Kirk Cousins 28 qb 3 3 0 1 1 0 0
    31 Matt Jones 23 rb 3 3 0 1 1 0 0
    80 Jamison Crowder 23 wr 3 2 0 1 0 0 0
    88 Pierre Garcon 30 wr 3 3 0 0 1 7 0
    Team Total 27.2 3 3 28 0 26 19 6 4 5 7 0 7.0 132 81
    Opp Total 3 0 7 14 0 4


    No. Player Age Pos G GS Int Yds TD Lng PD FF Fmb FR Yds TD Sk Tkl Ast Sfty
    33 Jordan Poyer 25 db 3 3 0 0 0 0 2 18 5
    58 Christian Kirksey 24 lb 3 3 1.0 17 5
    56 Demario Davis 27 lb 3 3 13 7
    30 Derrick Kindred 23 db 3 1 0 0 0 0 2 13 1
    71 Danny Shelton 23 dl 3 3 8 7
    22 Tramon Williams 33 db 3 2 0 1 1 0 0 9 2
    27 Jamar Taylor 26 db 3 3 1 -3 0 -3 1 9 0
    23 Joe Haden 27 db 2 2 2 9 0 9 5 6 1
    30 Ibraheim Campbell 24 db 2 2 6 0
    90 Emmanuel Ogbah 23 lb 3 3 0 0 0 0 2 5 1
    96 Xavier Cooper 25 dl 3 1 5 0
    52 Corey Lemonier 25 3 0 1 0 1 0 0 1.0 4 0
    98 Jamie Meder 25 dl 3 2 3 4
    20 Briean Boddy-Calhoun 23 db 1 1 1 27 1 27 1 3 1
    94 Carl Nassib 23 dl 2 1 0 0 0 0 1 1.0 3 0
    44 Nate Orchard 23 lb 3 1 2 2
    53 Joe Schobert 23 lb 3 1 0 0 0 0 1 2 0
    5 Cody Kessler 23 qb 1 1 0 2 1 0 0
    80 Ricardo Louis 22 wr 3 1 0 1 2 1 0
    59 Tank Carder 27 3 0 1 0
    10 Robert Griffin 26 qb 1 1 0 1 1 0 0
    41 Tracy Howard 22 3 0 1 0
    13 Josh McCown 37 qb 1 1 0 1 1 -4 0
    99 Stephen Paea 28 dl 3 1 1 0
    25 George Atkinson 24 3 0 0 1 0 0 0
    74 Cameron Erving 24 ol 2 2 0 1 0 -15 0
    Team Total 25.4 3 4 33 1 27 15 1 8 7 -18 0 3.0 129 36
    Opp Total 3 0 3 18 0 10 1



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    Flashback Friday: This Day in 2012

    On this day, September 30th, in 2012, the Washington Redskins scored a come from behind victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

    Billy Cundiff kicked a 41 yard field goal to give Washington a 24-22 victory, after Robert Griffin III executed a near perfect 2-minute drill with 1:42 to play. He completed 3 straight passes, before taking off on a 15-yard scamper that put Cundiff in range.

    Griffin also ran for a 5-yartd touchdown earlier in the game, and finished the day 26 of 35 for 323 yards.

    The Redskins went on to finish the season 10-6 and won the NFC East.

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    The Loser Papers – 2016 – Edition I

    Better late than never, and better out of New Jersey than almost anywhere else. What is this, you ask? Why, it’s The Loser Papers, of course! This is where you come to read the other side of the story. There’s no love for the Redskins on these pages. Here you find out how the other team woulda, shoulda, coulda, if only… And you get it straight from the hometown newspapers of the most bitter losers. Today, you’ll hear from such famous crybaby’s as Sheli Womanning and Ol’ BJ. Anyhoo, let’s get right to the fun. Our first two stories come from the pages of The New York Post:

    Eli Manning blinks last as Giants can’t beat Josh Norman

    After all the flags and gaffes and mishaps and blocked punts and fake punts and turnovers and momentum swings and Odell Beckham Jr. going at Josh Norman and an overwrought Beckham on the sideline taking a swing at a kicking net, after all those Redskins field goals, one after another, the Giants had the ball, time to work with and Eli Manning in the huddle, needing to drive his team for a potential game-winning field goal and a wonderful start to the season.

    There was 1:51 remaining, the Giants owned two timeouts and this wild and crazy affair was in the hands Manning, usually the coolest customer on the field.

    “I said, ‘We’re going to win this game 30-29, we’re gonna win,’’ guard Justin Pugh said. “But we didn’t.’’

    No, they didn’t. Manning hit Victor Cruz for 18 yards to get the Giants to their 39-yard line, but with 1:02, left Manning’s next pass was the last he got to throw. He looked short and over the middle for Shane Vereen but rookie safety Su’a Cravens stepped in front of the target and came away with a lunging interception. It was a fitting way for the Giants to absorb Sunday’s 29-27 loss at MetLife Stadium, as they were a mistake-prone and self-destructive outfit for much of the sun-splashed afternoon.

    “Bad decision by me,’’ Manning said. “Should’ve gone onto my next progression. Guy made a good play and it was unfortunate.’’

    Just like that, the Giants (2-1) failed to bury the Redskins (1-2) in an early-season showdown that brought out the worst in Ben McAdoo’s team as he was hit with his first head-coaching loss amid three more turnovers and an array of mistakes and penalties.

    Eli ManningPhoto: Charles Wenzelberg

    “Yeah, it’s disappointing,’’ McAdoo said. “Absolutely. We need to be better than that, and we are better than that. We’re going to address it this week and we’re going to fix it.’’

    The much-ballyhooed Beckham-Norman battle royal started slowly, heated up early in the fourth quarter and really was about to percolate when it fizzled, as center Weston Richburg was called for his second unsportsmanlike conduct penalty — he blocked Norman on Beckham’s 24-yard catch-and-run and then apparently mouthed off — leading to a shocking ejection, the first-ever in the NFL under the so-called Beckham Rule. At the time, the Redskins were leading 26-24 and a Giants drive reached the Washington 15 before Manning looked into the end zone for tight end Will Tye, who gave up on the play and the pass was intercepted by cornerback Quinton Dunbar.

    Undeterred, the Giants should have been in business when rookie Romeo Okwara stormed in to block Tress Way’s punt that would have put them inside the Redskins’ 20-yard line. That block was nullified when rookie safety Andrew Adams, making his NFL debut, was called for a mindless roughing penalty. The Giants, after getting the ball on their own 30 on the second post, put a drive together and Josh Brown’s 30-yard field goal put them ahead 27-26 midway through the fourth quarter.

    It was that type of game, in which the Giants canceled out much of what they did right with something so wrong. A roughing the passer penalty on Olivier Vernon helped the ’Skins grind away on the ground with Matt Jones to set up Dustin Hopkins for his fifth field goal for a 29-27 Redskins lead. A comeback was not to be after a three-turnover, 11-penalty performance.

    “We got them on the ropes a few times and all the sudden we’re going backwards,’’ Manning said. “We got to play smarter football. We can’t afford to do that.’’

    This was a wasteful outing for the Giants, who led 14-3 in the second quarter and appeared poised to take control — until they lost their poise.

    “I feel like we should have won that game,’’ Pugh said. “If they weren’t playing for the Redskins, they probably feel like they should have lost that game, too. We hurt ourselves with turnovers, penalties, everything you can do to lose a game today we did.’’

    Beckham ended with seven catches for 121 yards, with Norman on him most of the way. Beckham said he was warned by the officials before the game that his first indiscretion would prompt an immediate ejection, a harsh response to last year’s altercations with Norman.

    “There was no, ‘You get a warning,’ ’’ Beckham said. “There was not any of that. You just have to be on your best behavior. Unfortunately, that’s what it’s come to. It’s not really football anymore as much as it is all the other things that play into it.’’

    Beckham was called for one penalty — offensive pass interference on a pick play on a pass to Sterling Shepard on the final, fateful series. Norman was called for an unnecessary roughness penalty for hitting Shepard early in the fourth quarter.

    Norman got the last laugh.

    “It’s a big, I don’t want to say [a] step back,’’ linebacker Jonathan Casillas said, “but this is a hurting we got to overcome.’’


    Giants’ kicked-out center accuses ref of targeting him

    Weston Richburg didn’t pass the buck, but he didn’t exactly own his ejection, either.

    The Giants center, the first player to get tossed under the NFL’s new double unsportsmanlike conduct rule, admitted, “I let my team down,” but also took a shot at umpire Undrey Walsh, saying, “The guy that threw [the flag] was after me.”

    While backup Brett Jones performed well in place of Richburg, his fourth-quarter disqualification certainly didn’t help the Giants in their disappointing 29-27 loss to the Redskins at MetLife Stadium on Sunday. The new rule was implemented after Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. and Panthers cornerback Josh Norman, now with the Redskins, combined for five personal fouls in an ugly matchup last season.

    “They were probably trying to cut down on things seeing what happened last year with that matchup,” the 25-year-old Richburg said. “But it’s on me. I can’t control how many flags they want to throw. I’ve got to be a leader and be in there for my team.”

    Richburg said he apologized to his teammates after the defeat, and they didn’t seem too upset with him, as long as it doesn’t happen again.

    “Weston knows we need him out there,” left guard Justin Pugh said. “He’s our center, one of the best centers in the NFL, we need him on the field. He’s gonna learn from it. He’s a young guy, that fine’s gonna come in and I know he won’t have that happen again.”

    It was unclear what he was called for on the play in question, a 24-yard pass play to Beckham in which Richburg was down field and shoved Norman from behind. Richburg said there was no trash-talking with Norman involved, and said he wasn’t given a reason for the penalty.

    “We didn’t have a very lengthy conversation about it,” Richburg said.

    As for what he felt about it, Richburg said, “I can’t say anything about the call.”

    His ejection hurt, but so did the penalty. The Giants would’ve had the ball at the Redskins 5-yard-line, trailing 26-24 with 14:03 remaining. Instead, the ball got moved back to the 20, and Eli Manning threw an interception two players later.

    “I let my teammates down,” Richburg said. “I have to be a presence in there and be a leader and I let my team down.”

    Without directly doing so, Richburg was at least implicating Walsh for making what he felt was an unnecessary call because of their dialogue during the game. It sounded like a contentious back and forth.

    “I deal with him a lot because he is the umpire and spots the ball, so I am talking to him about calls and what not,” Richburg said. “But like I said, I just have to be that consistent presence for my team and today I made a mistake and let it pull me out of the game.”


    And more fun from The New York Daily News:

    WATCH: Giants’ Odell Beckham Jr. throws fit, fights with kicking net and cries

    Sunday, September 25, 2016, 4:29 PM

    It was only a matter of time before things heated up between Washington and the Giants. And you can bet Odell Beckham Jr. was right in the middle of it Sunday at MetLife Stadium.

    The madness started with a wild sequence in the fourth quarter that featured a helmet-to-helmet hit from Washington cornerback Josh Norman — Beckham’s nemesis — and a subsequent ejection for Weston Richburg after the Giants center earned his second unsportsmanlike penalty. Eli Manning then threw an interception in the end zone, and Beckham wasn’t pleased.

    Odell Beckham looks on in the fourth quarter game against Washington on Sunday. 

    Odell Beckham looks on in the fourth quarter game against Washington on Sunday.

    (Al Bello / Getty Images)

    The star Giants wide receiver walked to the sideline and swung his helmet against the kicking net.

    The apparatus fell over and the metal beam drilled Beckham in the head.

    Odell Beckham takes his frustration out on an innocent net.

    Odell Beckham takes his frustration out on an innocent net.

    (Barely In Bounds Vine)

    Later, cameras caught Beckham with tears in his eyes on the sideline and Manning trying to calm him down.

    Football is emotional, but this is a whole different level.


    And, finally, from The New York Times:

    ‘Desperate’ Redskins Take Risks and Beat Giants

    The Redskins’ Su’a Cravens was tackled by the Giants’ Shane Vereen after making an interception that essentially ended the game. Credit Bill Kostroun/Associated Press

    EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — Odell Beckham Jr.’s bushy platinum curls posed a stark contrast to the deep red scratch still glimmering above the corner of his right eye socket Sunday evening, as he stood in the Giants’ locker room minutes after a hard-fought defeat.

    The evidence was all there, written on his face: a bloody mark that could come to symbolize the bitter fight for an N.F.C. East division title this season.

    It was hard to know whether the scratch had been made by a Washington Redskins defender or Beckham himself, when, in a fit of fourth-quarter rage, he swung his helmet at a kicking net and the crossbar collapsed and hit him in the face. In either case, the Giants (2-1) could not hide the physical and emotional toll from a 29-27 defeat they will surely come to rue.

    “They did a good job clawing, scratching, fighting,” Beckham said, “doing anything they need to do to get the win.”

    With opportunities to bury the Redskins (1-2) in the division, the Giants, at home on a crisp and sun-kissed afternoon, committed 11 penalties and three turnovers and failed to summon enough out of their revamped defense to stop Washington’s continuous offensive pressure.

    “It’s like a trap game,” Robinson told them. “This team is desperate.”

    But even staked to a 21-9 lead in the second quarter and clicking on offense for the first time all season, the Giants’ defense could not stem Washington’s attack. Two plays, both deep passes to DeSean Jackson, and — bang, bang — it was 21-16. The Redskins were not going down without a fight.

    The officials had anticipated a spirited, chippy game. They tried to set a no-nonsense tone early. The Giants were called for five penalties in the first half, the Redskins four. But in the second half, the Giants seemed unable to bend to the officials’ tight calling of the game.

    “Just too many self-inflicted mistakes that put us in bad positions,” quarterback Eli Manning said.

    The biggest was the unsportsmanlike-conduct penalty on center Weston Richburg after he appeared to have words with the Redskins’ Josh Norman early in the fourth quarter. Because it was his second such penalty of the game, Richburg was ejected.

    “I let my teammates down,” Richburg said.

    With the loss of Richburg, the team’s offense sputtered. Manning was intercepted at the goal line two plays later by Quinton Dunbar, who made the catch with one hand.

    The heightened tensions were largely a response to the well-documented animus between Norman, a cornerback, and Beckham, who was suspended for a game last December after sparring with Norman, then with the Carolina Panthers.

    On Sunday, Beckham said, the officials approached him before the game and gave him a stern warning: Any funny business, whatever the prompting, and he would be looking at a swift ejection.

    “No warning, none of that,” Beckham said. “Unfortunately, that’s what we’ve come to.”

    Beckham said he did not know if Norman had been similarly admonished. It seemed doubtful, especially when Beckham pretended to leap for a pass in the end zone early in the first quarter and Norman caught him in the air and carried him for several yards before dropping him to the turf. An official, standing right there, never threw a flag.

    “It was kind of like, ‘Wow, geez, what am I doing?’” Norman said. “But at the same time, I appreciate the officials. They really did a good job of controlling the game.”

    It was Beckham who ultimately lost his composure on the sideline. After Dunbar’s interception ruined a good Giants scoring chance, Beckham raged by the bench, cursing and yelling and, eventually, whacking himself with the kicking net. When asked how he had received the scratch on his face, Beckham said he did not know.

    “It’s an emotional game,” Giants Coach Ben McAdoo said. “We had a talk with him at one point, and I think on the field, he handled himself well.”

    The Redskins, though more disciplined, played like a team willing to do anything to avoid falling into an 0-3 hole.

    They took risks, most notably on fourth and 12 late in the third quarter when the punter, Tress Way, lobbed a pass instead of a kick and connected with Dunbar down the sideline for a 31-yard gain.

    That play, which ultimately yielded a field goal, represented how Washington’s offense kept coming at the Giants, refusing to allow any sense of security. After trailing by as much as 12, the Redskins took a lead, 23-21, five minutes into the third quarter when Jamison Crowder took a screen pass on third down and ran it 55 yards for a touchdown.

    Field goals led to four more lead exchanges before the Giants found themselves down by two with 1 minute 51 seconds left and an opportunity to win. With two timeouts remaining, there was optimism in the Giants’ huddle.

    “We’d been moving the ball well,” Manning said. “Felt we were in good shape.”

    But on first and 10 from the Giants’ 39, Manning tried to find Shane Vereen cutting under the deep Redskins’ coverage, and safety Su’a Cravens made a spectacular diving interception to effectively end the game.

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    A Sigh of Relief

    A collective sigh went out across Washington.  A win came when we needed it the most, and it’s hard to not be in good spirits with the end result. After a week of sulking and dreariness from a loss to the Cowboys, a win against the Giants is the kind of pick me up that you need.

    It would have been easy for spirits to crumble given how the game took an early 3-14 swing against us. After such a strong 3 out and by the defense on the opening drive, we gave up such a crucial turnover on a botched punt. REGARDLESS of Dunbar getting blocked into the ball, if Crowder fields the punt there is no issue. In the end, that play by both Crowder and Dunbar would set up the perfect redemption story that they had yesterday with their special teams and third down efforts being the keys to victory. They spoke for the team by picking themselves back up. We would bounce back, show resiliency, and when we truly were hanging off the edge of the cliff in an 0-3 start to the season, the Redskins picked themselves back up. It was a tough win and a reason to hold our heads high.

    There were some rough plays and rough drives in the first half.  Our defense had a terrible time stopping Running Backs and we kept giving away 3rd & longs.  There were some moments where we almost flashed brilliance with Norman dropping a near interception and Crowder on a 51-yard punt return to reset field position, but ultimately we would be staring at the wrong side of a 9 – 21 score. Again, it would have been easy to crumble, but we didn’t. Chris Baker started yelling at Joe Barry, DeSean kept pressing Gruden. Players were hungry, we still had fight in us. Immediately we charge down the field on two strikes to DeSean and right the reeling ship. WE’RE STILL IN THIS GAME! we seethed. Our defense kept the pushing with Will Blackmon ripping the ball the out of the Giants hands. While we would close the half by misusing timeouts in the final seconds or taking a bad sack, tthe game was still within reach and spirits were strong.

    Lichtensteiger got hurt on the first drive and it would be the beginning of what would become a test of our offensive line depth with Lauvao joining him on the side line. One of the best personnel decisions on the offensive line was getting Ty Nsekhe out at LT and moving Trent Williams inside to guard. It was a great move that eventually won the day with our running game. Crowder breaking free on his screen for the touchdown is due to Trent Williams being the man blocking out in space. Him in the guard swing/tackle position is what’s best for the team given that we have a monster like Ty sitting on the bench otherwise. That’s not to say that Williams isn’t the best LT on our team, he’s the best LT in the NFL. It’s precisely because he’s so athletic and a guy like Ty is so trained/built to be a LT that you need to move Trent inside to keep our best players on the field, especially given that Long was our backup guard/center and we’re out both a guard and a center.

    Did I mention we can’t stop Running Backs and 3rd & long is our Achilles heel? Cause in the second half it was more of the same of that as the Giants went down the field. Our defense made an admirable stand, almost forcing an Eli Manning fumble, and Bruton Jr. lost a maddening challenge that would have kept a 23-21 lead that instead slipped to 23-24.

    Side Note: lip reading Jay Gruden’s clear, irate, and filthy side line language after challenges is my new favorite pastime.

    The trick play on special teams was a gambit at the right time. It was too late in the game to being giving the ball back with a defense that has had issues stopping the Giants from scoring and points and time were scarce. Gruden made a gutsy call and Dunbar made a phenomenal catch on a surprisingly spiraled ball from our punter. I’d like to think the Tress Way had practiced that throw ad nauseam waiting for that exact moment to show the world that there truly is no better punter or pure passer in the NFL. Seriously, both of our kickers were outstanding yesterday. Dustin Hopkins putting all but one of his kickoffs though the end zone and every single one of his field goals (5) was through the uprights… It’s been a while since it was safe to trust our special teams and they did so much to comeback from an early error.

    Like many of our trips to the redzone this season, we couldn’t capitalize with a touchdown after a great play that set us up in good territory. We did get back the lead thought with 26-24 and we went into a tightly contested 4th quarter. It would have been easy to lose our cool, it would have been easy to crumble. But there was fight in this team, they would not squander a chance to lead. We did see signs of slipping on the other side of the field. It culminated in the FIRST ejection due to two unsportsmanlike conduct penalties. Odell Beckham Jr made some deep gashes in yards but the Giants couldn’t help themselves and had a line man taunt after a hit to the back on Norman. The Giants continued to drive down the field on OBJ when a man by the name of Dunbar (heard of him yet?) made a one handed interception within our own 5-yard line to safe guard the lead and shake off the Giants assault. It boiled over with OBJ having a tantrum against a net on the sideline. Soon afterward an unnecessary hit on the other side of the field by a player you’ve never heard of before (and probably won’t again seeing as the Giants added him to the active roster the day before the game) saved us from a blocked punt and ensured that their offense would be denied the opportunity to rally for a little while longer.

    Shout out to Sean McVay for remembering to stick with the ground game. He ran the ball more times yesterday (30) than he had all season (29). It’s amazing how much better play action is when the threat of a ground game is real. It also leaves defenses so tired that you can end games strong by eating 6+ minutes of clock on a running back’s shoulders. So keep it up and watch the formula that worked last season start working again for you this season. On Sunday it left the Giants with a little more than a minute to spare. The Giants we trying to march to field goal range. That’s when the wonderful new addition to our defense Sua Cravens stepped up and came down with an Eli Manning interception when we needed a big play the most. An excellent end to an exciting game.

    Cleveland is a stronger team than their record suggests. They’ve had some bad breaks with their kicker but otherwise they’re playing good football and we are not a good enough team to overlook anybody. Beating teams that you’re favored +9 by Vegas is something that good teams do. Victory this past Sunday doesn’t mean we’ve proven anything yet, but it does mean that we can start to believe this team can play like the 9-7 Division Champs they were last year. Next week is an opportunity to reaffirm those beliefs.




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    Game Day: Sunday, September 25th, 2016 – Washington Redskins @ New York Giants – 1:00PM EST


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    Kickoff Temperature: 54 degrees, 5mph winds.

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