Feel like you’ve been kicked in the groin repeatedly? We all do. It’s never a great feeling when you feel like your team played it’s worst game in the last two months, to end the season. Obviously the story of the game was Robert Griffin III – his injured knee – and the decision to leave him in the game. I can’t believe the vitriol that I have heard spewing from many in #RedskinsNation’s mouth:
Somehow a game that started ugly for the Washington Redskins, never really seemed in question for most of the second half, as they steam-rolled over the Cleveland Browns with an impressive 38-21 victory. Here are some quick thoughts on the game:
1) Kirk Cousins – I tweeted before the game that I wasn’t worried about Kirk getting the start because at the end of the day – I see the same great qualities in Kirk off the field that I see in Robert Griffin III – poise, intelligence, and born leadership. That by no means guaranteed success, but I felt that we have been playing with some real swagger, and that our growing confidence would help Cousins do what he needed to do in my opinion – not make any mistakes. Read the rest of this entry »
Is it me or are the Washington Redskins actually starting to turn into a resilient football team? I’m not saying that they can overcome all odds or anything – but they proved on Sunday that they could overcome some pretty big ones. When Robert Griffin III went out with a right knee injury in the waning moments of the game, the ‘other rookie quarterback’ came in and polished off the come from behind 31-28 overtime win. Who’d have thunk it?
Here are five thoughts on the game:
1) Kirk Cousins – Take a bow son, that was categorically poise under pressure. Not only did he hang in the pocket and pillow a beautiful pass to Pierre Garcon for the touchdown, but he looked like he was going to score on the two-point conversion, by hook or by crook. Sure he didn’t have to do a lot, but he didn’t make any mistakes and he led his team to victory – that’s about as much as you can ask for. From a rookie quarterback tossed into the final minutes of a game, it’s more than you can expect.
2) Kyle Shanahan – Calling the ‘RG3 Goalline QB Draw’ play on the two-point Kyle? Cheeky. And Brilliant. I didn’t scream at my TV much about calls at all, and our offense bossed a pretty darn good defense for much of the game, so given my willingness to throw mud when he doesn’t call a good game – I have to give credit where it’s due – Kyle called a great game. He actually does so more often than not lately – save for a couple of seemingly brain fart type moments. He has molded this offense into one that defenses are struggling to handle – what else can you ask for? Expect a contract extension soon, because he’s established that he can be deadly with his offense, and with RGIII running it.
3) Alfred Morris – Continues to be… unstoppable; unfortunately, he also put the ball on the ground again. I hate having to even put that asterisk on an otherwise fantastic performance, but it cost the Redskins 7 points – it certainly bears mentioning. Still, Morris might be the only person that can stop Morris right now, because he continues to run over would-be defenders, and smash out record rookie yardage. He hung 122 yards on a pretty good defense on his 23 carries, and posted his 7th touchdown of his inaugural campaign. It was his third 100-yard rushing game in a row, and his sixth of the season, to bring his total to 1228 yards and a bruising 4.9 yard average. It’s criminal that he’s only the ‘second best rookie’ on this team, but I’m pretty sure that Alfred can handle the slot designation.
4) Richard Crawford – Enjoy the new digs rookie, you can keep the job! Brandon Banks was de-activated against the Ravens, and my guess is that his days in Washington are done. Crawford peeled off a 64-yard punt return to set up the game winning overtime field goal, and that, and that alone is enough to unseat Banks as it’s more than Banks has done all season. Grant Paulsen summed it up well in a tweet:
Richard Crawford returned three punts for 100 yards yesterday. Brandon Banks amassed 108 yards (13 returns) in his last 6 games. #Redskins
— Grant Paulsen (@granthpaulsen) December 10, 2012
5) Offensive Line – Left to right, top to bottom, this unit continues to be the surprise of the season for me. I can’t write some of the things that I would like to write, because I believe in mojos, and I certainly don’t want to mojo the line right now. Trent Williams is hurt? Ask the guy lined up across from him if he’s playing hurt. Solid leadership. Tyler Polumbus has shaken off a couple of bad outings to put together a couple of much better efforts. Kory Lichtensteiger has come back from injury steadily and productively, and put together a solid season. Will Montgomery has picked up here he left off last season, and continues to be a steadying influence for the entire unit.
Chris Chester? Him I have a little more to say about… because nobody ever seems to say anything about him. Do you know how great it is when you NEVER hear your guard’s name in a game? Steady going forwards and going backwards, he has been great against the run and pass, and has put together what I think is a season worth mentioning, and he has been exceptionally sound of late. I checked out Stats.com because they keep excellent offensive line stats if you’re ever looking. Here is what I found:
LT: Trent Williams – 5 Penalties (3 False Start, 2 Holding) – 4 Sacks Allowed
LG: Kory Lichtensteiger – 8 Penalties (4 False Start, 3 Holding) – 2.5 Sacks Allowed
C: Will Montgomery – 2 Penalties (2 False Start, 0 Holding) – 1 Sack Allowed
RG: Chris Chester – 2 Penalties (2 False Start, 0 Holding) – 1.25 Sacks Allowed
RT: Tyler Polumbus – 2 Penalties (0 False Start, 0 Holding) – 3.75 Sacks Allowed
All of the numbers are really good actually, but for me Chester’s stand out most because of his complete lack of press and acknowledgment. Just two false starts on the season, no holding penalties and only 1.25 sacks allowed? That bears mentioning. I hope I keep not hearing Chris’ name for the remainder of the season – I will know that he’s still playing really well.
It’s hard to put into words what being over .500 feels like so late in the season for this emotional fan. It took a lot of grit and effort for this team to get to this point – you have to believe that they have even more in them. Tough test for them against the Cleveland Browns next – they’re easy to look past, but at 5-3 in their last 8 games, the Redskins better not listen to too much press about their resurgence.
They still have a mountain of work left to do.
Many fans consider the fourth preseason game to be ‘a waste of viewing time’ because so many starters will not only not play much, they will not play at all. However, it may be the game where the most NFL roster positions are decided, as the second and third stringers battle it out for the right to back-up their often more heralded teammates. Sometimes the games can be a little less polished, but they can also often be a little more hotly contested.
Here are five Redskins that I’ll be paying close attention to, against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers tonight: Read the rest of this entry »
Does my title confuse you? I am calling this things that I think I think I know, because they are preseason lamentations, and reaching solid conclusions from such vanilla observances, can often be sticky. They are things that I know that I saw, I just don’t know how much weight that can be granted, given the overall practice nature of the NFL’s preseason.
1) Kirk Cousins has a future in the NFL. He put on an impressive performance on Saturday night against the Bears, tossing three touchdowns, and shredding the Chicago defense time after time in the second half. Pretty impressive for a guy seeing his first real NFL game action. He looked poised and comfortable, and really seemed to have a firm grasp of his reads, and the Redskins offense. Read the rest of this entry »
I absolutely hate preseason – I tweeted as much during the game – it’s like watching four Injury Bowls in a row. Unfortunately for the Redskins, their 33-31 loss to the Bears was no exception – Brian Orakpo and Brandon Meriweather left the game with first half injuries. MRIs for both players will likely tell a better story this week. Other than that, it was a typical preseason game – filled with highlights and lowlights. Here are some observations:
A lot of people were excited by Brandon Banks 91-yard punt return for a touchdown, and rightfully so, it was an exciting play. But many people in Redskins Nation seemed to believe that him doing so, guaranteed himself a roster spot. I don’t think so. Obviously, the return won’t hurt his claim any, but the Redskins already know that Banks can be a great return man – after all, it’s his third consecutive preseason with a return TD. The Redskins coaching staff told Banks he would have to take a wide receiver spot if he was going to make this team – returning a punt doesn’t do that. Banks definitely flashes brilliant play-making abilities at times, but will it be enough to make this team in 2012? Read the rest of this entry »
Earlier in the week, we asked our fellow THNers to please send us in some of their photos if they went to training camp this week.
Here are some great photos that we received from Mozelle Meyers, @Sportsgal5_2000 on Twitter, and a die hard Washington Redskins fan:
Robert Griffin III was just named named 2011 Big 12 Sportsperson of the Year. The award is given to the student athlete that “displays an extraordinary degree of sportsmanship and/or community service during the academic year.”
On top of being the first Heisman Trophy winner in Baylor history, Griffin has been setting the standard off the field for even longer. According to the Big 12’s Press Release about the awards, on top of being an ambassador for the entire school, Griffin, “was also a Special Olympics volunteer and served at Friends for Life, a daycare for mentally-challenged individuals. He has also volunteer and spoke at many local schools. Other community service projects include Santa’s Workshop, Food for Families and greeting new students for the Baylor admissions office during the annual on-campus celebration of Dia del Oso.” Read the rest of this entry »
As Redskin fans spent Monday pouring over article after article about the Redskins mini-camp that came to a close on Sunday, one thing that seems painfully obvious, Robert Griffin III blew the doors off of his first NFL on-field assignment.
Sunday was the first opportunity that the media were granted access to Mini-Camp, so all eyes were focused squarely on the new Redskins quarterback, and that usually means just one thing in Washington – scrutiny. And yet in a city that seems to love to hate as much as it loves to love, very few souls seem willing to venture out into that gentle abyss and rock the RGIII boat – at least not yet. Read the rest of this entry »
There are are a lot of new faces at Redskins Park these days, especially today as the Redskins kick off the offseason schedule with the Rookie Mini-Camp. Combine that, with the fact that it’s Friday, and that means Follow Friday on Twitter, I thought it would be prudent to put together a (hopefully) comprehensive list of the twitter handles of all the new blood. Read the rest of this entry »
Tags: Adam Gettis, Alfred Morris, Chase Minnifield, Jordan Bernstine, Josh LeRibeus, Keenan Robinson, Kirk Cousins, Lance Lewis, RGIII, Richard Crawford, Tom Compton, Twitter Handles, Washington Redskins