Washington Redskins: 5 Reasons Why Their Season Is Already Kaput
What Has Happened To The Washington Redskins?
The Washington Redskins aren't doing many things right this 2013 season. They were one of the most prolific teams a year ago, led by then-rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III, but now they have diminished to a group of sorry football players.
They began this season with three straight losses to the Philadelphia Eagles, Green Bay Packers and then the Detroit Lions. Washington's only win has come on the road against a poor Oakland Raiders team.
It is very evident early on that this Washington team is not the same that went 10-6 and won the NFC East last season. Washington ranked fourth in 2012 with 436 total points, while allowing just 388. This season is almost the complete opposite — nothing is clicking offensively, and the defense is even worse.
Head coach Mike Shanahan has to be extremely disappointed with the way his team is executing on the field. The team is already in a hole at 1-3 on the young season, and there are very few games ahead in the schedule that look like truly winnable games. This team is performing nowhere close to its dynamic 2012 version, and its chances of making the postseason are non-existent.
Washington is coming off a bye, so if there is any time for the team to bounce back with a much-need win it's this Sunday against the division-rival Dallas Cowboys. The way that Tony Romo played last week against the Denver Broncos, though, gives little opportunity for such a rebound. Here are the top five reasons why Washington Redskins fans can already begin looking toward the 2014 NFL season.
5. Division Belongs To Superior Cowboys And Eagles
The NFC East is not the best division in the NFL. At this point, it's pretty clear that its title will land in the hands of either the Dallas Cowboys or the Philadelphia Eagles by season's end. The Eagles have the most prolific offense in the league, ranking second in the NFL with 2,274 total yards and fifth with 135 points. Tony Romo is getting hot at the right time for the Cowboys and Dallas will be able to put together some quality wins down the stretch, if Romo is able to keep it together through all four quarters.
The Redskins have to play the Denver Broncos, San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs as non-divisional opponents down the road. Those teams combine for a 13-2 record at the moment. You can chalk those games in the loss category. There's just no way the Redskins can win enough games to overcome those losses.
4. Lackluster Run Game
The Redskins are the 21st best run team in the NFL with 424 total yards through five weeks. With very limited mobility from Robert Griffin III, who led the league last year with 6.8 yards per attempt, the Redskins simply can't get it done on the ground behind just Alfred Morris. Washington has found the end zone only three times all season on the ground. Griffin III is passing much more often than he was last year, and opposing defenses no longer have to worry about him leaving the pocket.
The lackluster run game in Washington is turning the Redskins into a one-dimensional team. That is not the winning identity head coach Mike Shanahan used a year ago.
3. Offense Is Struggling
Washington is ranked 26th in the NFL with 91 total points this season. If you can't cross the goal line, you're not going to win games — especially with a putrid defense, which we'll get into later. Robert Griffin III is no longer able to awe defenses with his ability to scramble out of the pocket, and his passing game hasn't been able to pick up the slack.
2. Defense Is Awful
There's really no other word that can accurately describe the Redskins' defense other than awful. Washington ranks 28th in passing yards allowed with 298.3 per game and 31st in rushing yards allowed with a 142.3-yard average. If the saying stands true, that defense wins football games, then the Redskins don't stand a chance. The Washington defense can barely force turnovers either, taking away the ball just seven times this season from the opponent — good enough for 24th in the league. This defense has plenty of holes, which don't seem to be filled any time soon.
1. Robert Griffin III No Longer Explosive
The No. 1 reason why the Washington Redskins reached the playoffs last season was because of their record-setting rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III. RGIII, as you all know, tore his ACL in the first round of the playoffs and he hasn't played at the same dynamic level since. He sat out the entire preseason and his lack of preparedness for this season is evident every Sunday. Griffin III sits outside the top-15 in the NFL in completions, passing yards and touchdowns. He is not the same player this season that he was a year ago, mainly because of his health. His struggle on the field is by the far the top reason why the Redskins will not be making this year's postseason.