Sunday’s game against the Eagles was a chance for the Redskins to take a firm hold on the NFC East. They would have been 4-1 with two divisional wins, and Philadelphia would have dropped to 1-5, largely making them a non-factor for the rest of the season.
So much for that plan. Now the Redskins are 3-2 and are in second place in the division behind the 4-2 New York Giants. Additionally, the Eagles have regained the confidence they needed and at 2-4, are still very much alive in this tight division.
Let’s take a deeper look at yesterday’s game:
The Good (maybe “okay” is better word):
– Second half defense: After giving up 20 points in the first half, the defense tightened up in the second half, shutting the Eagles out. OJ Atogwe and DeAngelo Hall both grabbed interceptions, and they didn’t give up any huge plays. They still got gashed in the running game, but they definitely kept them in the game. Considering what happened the last time these two teams played, it could have been a lot worse.
– Go kickers! Graham Gano was two-for-two on field goals (9 for 12 on the year), including a 50 yarder. He’s certainly kicking better than he did last year. And Sav Rocca punted beautifully all day, keeping the ball away from Desean Jackson and pinning the Eagles deep in their own territory.
– John Beck came into the game and provided a little spark. He definitely moves a lot better than Grossman (he rushed for a touchdown) and he didn’t throw an interception. So that’s a start.
– Terrence Austin finally had an impact. He was one of the more impressive receivers during the preseason, but like Leonard Hankerson, Mike Shanahan refuses to put him on the field. That changed on Sunday when he caught a nice pass from John Beck which put the Redskins inside the Eagles’ five yard line.
– And that’s pretty much it.
– 1 for 10 in third down.
– Outgained 422 to 287.
– Nine more penalties.
– Chris cooley: broken finger, out for a while.
– Kory Lichtensteiger: torn knee ligaments, done for the year.
– Trent Williams: high ankle sprain, out for a while.
– Run game? Completely non-existent. Hightower didn’t play and the combination of Ryan Torain and Roy Helu was absolutely shut down.
– No weapons: outside of Fred Davis, this team has no receiving threat. No wonder Rex Grossman was throwing to the other team. Leondard Hankerson, Leonard HANKERSON, LEONARD HANKERSON!!!
– Return game? What has happened to Brandon Banks? He’s nowhere close to as explosive as he was last year. Is he hurt? Maybe it’s time to put someone else back there (Terrence Austin, Niles Paul).
– Rocky McIntosh is reminding us of why they almost let him walk away during the offseason. He got worked all day. Put in Perry Riley.
– Rex Grossman. Four interceptions. Bad post-game press conference. Benched. Done.
The John Beck show has begun.