Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Game Recap: Skins lose 33-30, we are Snakebitten

I swear this team is cursed.
Only the Redskins could blow a 17-10 lead at halftime this way. The D holds the Saints and forces them to punt. Yet, at that moment the Saints punter shanks a ball that would have been decent field position with the typical fair catch from Randle-El. Only instead the ball bounces off the head/body of Kevin Barnes and is recovered by the Saints. Later, on the same drive, the Skins Kareem Moore picks off Drew Brees only to have the ball pulled out of his hands and ran back for a touchdown.

Hollywood can't write this ****.

But the Redskins keep fighting and again have the lead late in the 4th quarter. Then have an opportunity to make the lead 14, but decide to run the ball instead in an attempt to eat clock and settle for a chip shot FG to make it a two score game. Smart move, safe move.

Easy Right?

Not for this team. Shaun Suisham misses the easy FG (23 yards.....arrrrrgggggghhhhh!!!!!!) and obviously New Orleans goes right down and scores the tying TD. But the Redskins have one last chance to win the game by getting into FG range. Of course, Jason Campbell, who looked almost perfect throughout the game throws an INT.  Overtime (the Mrs. hates, overtime. Utterly hates it.)

Now I'm thinking: "Whoever wins the coin toss wins the game". Skins win the coin toss......but no win here. Nope. A Mike Sellers fumble (yes, it was a fumble) happens and the Saints eventually go down and kick the game winning FG (by this time I'm already a quarter way home as we left the game as soon as the refs said it was Saints ball).

This was an ideal trap game. Saints came off a statement win against the Patriots. They had to travel to FedEx on a short week and play in cold temperatures. Yet, despite a valiant effort by some of the team, the Skins couldn't find a way to hold onto the win. Freak mistakes combined with the defense faltering again in the 4th quarter and some questionable decisions on offense (3rd and 1 we run a stretch play with Marcus Mason when Quinton Ganther was plowing over guys with down hill runs and getting ultra-conservative in the Red Zone) let this game slip away.

This game hurt. I've been apathetic the last few weeks. "Oh we blew the lead to the Cowboys with minutes remaining in a 7-6 loss." Seen it, next."Eagles come back to win." Meh. For some reason this game was painful. Maybe it was b/c I was there. Maybe I bought into the fact that the Skins were going to beat an 11-0 Saints team, because the were playing better than the 11-0 Saints team. Maybe I was just stunned that we could put 30 up on this team. Put 30 up on anybody. When was the last time we scored 30 points?

Where does this team go from here? I don't know. You can't blame the loss on one player although the likely suspects will be Shaun Suisham (now cut) and Laron Landry (arguably could be/should be benched like Carlos Rogers for getting burned) but we'll learn a great deal about this team the next four weeks. Will they give up? I mean they have fought incredibly hard for the last four weeks and are only 1-3 for the effort. Or will they continue to fight? I mean one must argue if you can play the Saints like this, you should be able to beat or at least be in a game with the Raiders, Giants and Cowboys.

Most importantly who knew that the Skins could score 30 points? And if they lost to the Saints, it would be in more or less a shootout.

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly
Jason Campbell- 3 TDs over 360 yards passing. Again another performance that makes you wonder why didn't we see this earlier in the season. It also makes you wonder if Campbell should be back for another year. I know there is a debate on whether the INT he threw defines Campbell's inability to succeed in pressure situations. I would disagree and just call it a bad throw. I think of the 2008 game where Campbell led the Skins back and took the lead on a Jason Campbell pass to Santana Moss.

O-line- Run game was decent, but the pass blocking was pretty good throughout. No sacks allowed and only a few hits and penalties allowed is pretty good.

Quinton Ganther- 8 carries, 46 yards. Solid game. Deserves the start next week.

Devin Thomas- 2 TDs, 100 yd receiving. Has continually improved and had a career day. Looks like he has finally found what it takes to be a good WR in the NFL. This is why you give WRs 2-3 years to develop before you throw out the bust label.

Fred Davis- Another solid day and another TD pass. Has filled in well in Cooley's absence. Would have loved to see the two TE set threat.

The Sherms and Zorn- Playcalling is just much better despite how the system is run and how it was set up. At least between the twenties.

4th quarter defense- again fails to hold the lead after a solid performance in the 1st three quarters. Can't blame the failures of the O for this lack of performance. And why did the D give up multiple patterens that allowed the Saints to make a catch and step out of bounds. Not smart.

Laron Landry- we should be talking about his 12 tackle, 1 sack game. Instead we're talking about how he got toasted twice on double moves for TDs. No excuses for making that mistake twice.

Kareem Moore- made a nice INT. But you have to hold onto the ball!!!!!! That strip TD looked like something out of sandlot football.

Shaun Suisham- No, you shouldn't lose your job over one missed FG. However, it was a 23 yd. FG that you shanked. Add the fact that 2008 was a horrible year for you, you missed 2 key FGs in the Dallas game (one from 39yds) and your kickoffs are the 2nd worst in the league are the perfect combination for a firing.

Mike Sellers- Bad timing to lose the ball when you did.

The Refs- No, I'm not going to blame them for this loss. I don't agree with some of the calls but the refs didn't strip the ball from Moore or Sellers.

Gregg Williams- This was supposed to be his revenge game against the Skins and yet Campbell had his best game possibly ever as a pro QB. No sacks and they were run on by a 4th string RB. Not good.

Dan Snyder and Vinny Cerrato- Just because.

The Sherms and Zorn- don't understand why on 3rd and 1 you take out your successful running back (Ganther) bring in Marcus Mason and then run a predictable stretch play. Not creative and it again failed to work. I hate the stretch play with the Skins. Our team can't seem to block correctly on stretch plays and is a much more down-hill blocking team. I understand the run-run-run attempt FG series that lead to the failed Suisham FG, but I wonder if maybe you try a shot at the end zone once you keep the Saints on their toes and score a TD. Also, why isn't Todd Yoder being used more in the Red Zone and why don't we bootleg Jason more in RZ situations?

-Skins are now 3-3 at home with only the Giants and the Cowboys left on the schedule

- There were tons of Saints fans at the game. It's funny how many have jumped on the 12-0 bandwagon now that the Saints are a legit contender. There were maybe a tenth of Saints fans at FedEx last year compared to this year. It's also hilarious to hear non-southern (ie. deep South) people start that "Who 'Dat" chant. It makes you look terribly sad. Also, you guys barely, ( seriously, you should have lost this game) barely beat the Redskins....a team that got beat by Detroit and KC. Be happy, but for crying out loud it was just the Redskins, chill out.

-  The "Who 'Dat" line is not as annoying as the terrible towel, the "How 'bout 'dem Cowboys" or the Eagles chant. It's about as annoying as the Ravens "Move those chains" line when they get a 1st down.

- If the Bengals (it's very possible) meet the Saints in the Superbowl, it will be the battle of the Who Deys vs. the Who Dats. Shoot me now (rolls eyes).

- The Skins are still in the fifth spot if the draft was today. I can hope they still go LT there, but all signs point to another bust QB being drafted.

-Fans are confused. It was so easy to write this team off early on. Zorn's O could barley score 10 points a game. Campbell was inconsistent and looked shaky in the pocket. We have no O-line or running game or receivers outside of Moss and Cooley. Now, fans are wondering if we just address some positions we can win a Superbowl. I frankly say BS. Cerrato has had years......years since Gibbs left to address the O-line and has failed to do so. I personally think Zorn is still over his head as a HC. I like Zorn and I think he knows his X's and O's but he wasn't cutting it as a play caller. Campbell looks much improved. I wouldn't mind keeping Campbell if it meant us draft O-linemen with our 1st and 2nd round picks......but I think my hope is that we have no CBA and the Skins get a 1st and a 3rd for him.

- Had a great time meeting fellow BGO member Billfishead and getting to check out his seats in the lower bowl. Man, what a great view. And I thought my seats weren't bad.

Next Game @ Oakland (Battle of the incompetent owners)

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