Sunday, September 26, 2010

Game Recap: Skins Fall Hard to Rams.....Same as it Ever Was

Cue David Byrne:

 ("Same as it ever was"-- Look it's a Redskins fan after another loss to a bad team)

I guess it really doesn't matter who the coach is. Mike Shanahan, Jim Zorn, Joe Gibbs really doesn't matter, they can't seem to win games against the teams they should beat. Oh yeah, every once in a while they beat a team they shouldn't beat and they hang with teams that are on their level. But they never can beat (and I mean dominate) the teams that just aren't as good as they are. This happened last year with Jim Zorn's team as they fell to the winless Lions 19-14 in a game that wasn't even close. Same thing can be said about today's game. At one point, I did feel a momentum shift towards the Redskins as they rallied back from a 14-0 deficit but that feeling was fleeting as the Skins fell apart after taking a 16-14 lead early in the third quarter.

I never did understand why the Skins can't out play teams like this. Look, the Rams won with Steven Jackson (groin) and O.J. Atogwe (thigh) on the sidelines. They held a Redskins defense with a O-line that has been very suspect (only Brian Orakpo sacked Bradford once). Sam Bradford had most of the game to throw with minimal amounts of pressure and how guys I've never heard of (Keith Toston and Kenneth Darby) had no problems running the ball on our porous D (25 carries for 71 yards and 1 TD) is unbelievable. I know Sam Bradford is going to be a very good QB in the NFL but all of the things I was expecting the Redskins to do (the exotic blitzes, overloads, tight man coverage)....they didn't. If anything, it looked like the Skins were will to play a soft zone during much of the game. When they did play man coverage, they didn't look so hot. DeAngelo Hall got beaten many times by guys that would be at best a #2 or #3 WR (or worse) on most teams. Bradford picked the Skins apart most of the day (23/32, 235 yds, 1 TD, 1 INT).

The offense wasn't much better. The good news is that the run game finally started to work. The bad news was the pass game was off with exception to a few big plays. In the second half the Rams made some adjustments or the Skins O-line just gave up as the run game came to a complete halt. Also the bootlegs and misdirection that had worked so well in the first half stopped. It seemed like the Skins just wanted to throw the ball deep and if they missed, oh well.

I also have some questions about personnel. If you wanted to bench Portis b/c Ryan Torain had the faster legs, that's fine. But, why when the Skins are in passing situations and they could use some help for Heyer and the rest of the O-line isn't Portis in the game. Unless he's hurt, he should be in there blocking his butt off. Same question about Devin Thomas. Banks has been cut and Armstrong is injured. You mean to tell me that Devin Thomas is so bad that with only 4 WRs he doesn't take a snap with the O? Not even as a blocker (correct me if I'm wrong, but I didn't see him on the field with the O during the portions of the game I watched)?

The Skins may have done some good things but again lost at some of the important stats. They were 0/3 in the Red Zone. They were only 1/10 on 3rd down conversions. They had 9 penalties for 65 yards. Most importantly they lost time of possession by a whole 10 minutes. Those are coaching issues and they need to be fixed.

Not much else to say other than this game is antithesis of what the fans were hoping to see out of the new Mike Shanahan Redskins. I had hoped we had finally overcome what the fans have been seeing for the last decade or so......instead, today we were sucker punched again with the past Redskins.

(This is the only Sucker Punch I have any interest of seeing/experiencing)

Ok, let's do some Good, Bad and Ugly and call it a night.....this game is giving me a migraine.

The Good

- The Run Game (17 carries, 116 yds). The run blocking looked great in the 1st half. Clinton Portis and Ryan Torain ran all over the place and it didn't seem like it was going to stop. The problem was that it was completely shut down in the second half and the Redskins didn't run the ball enough.

- Graham Gano. Made three field goals and one extra point. Had another good game with kickoffs and had to fill in as the punter when Josh Bidwell injured his hip.

- Reed Doughty. Generated a key fumble that gave the Redskins a very short field and led to a TD. Looked like it was going to be the play to turn the tide. Sadly, it didn't.

- Santana Moss (6 catches, 124 yds., 1 TD, 1 fumble). First game where Moss topped 100 yards and scored his first TD on the year. But had a fumble that led to a Rams TD and a stupid 15 yard crack back block penalty.

- Devin Thomas (6 KO returns, average 28.0 yds, long 31). One of these days he's going to break a kick off for a TD.

- Phillip Daniels (3 tackles). Awesome block of a 21yd FG. (end of 1st half)

- Kareem Moore (6 tackles, 5 solo, 1 INT). Nice to see him back on the field he does help the secondary.

The Bad

- Special Teams. We really don't have a punt returner currently on the team. Phillip Buchanon reminds me of Keenan McCardell as a punt returner in his last year or Antwaan Randle-El. Also, for the third week in a row we have either a FG or punt blocked or muffed. That's just unacceptable and that's on Danny Smith.

- Coaching. Again I don't understand why Portis is not out there pass blocking when you got Stephon Heyer on the field. You need to protect McNabb and Heyer on an island is a major mistake. I didn't understand why the emphasis on certain schemes that didn't work and why the coaches went away from the bootlegs and misdirection that did work.

- Receivers not named Moss or Cooley. Joey Galloway had no catches (although 1 deep ball looked like pass interference that wasn't called). Roydell Williams only had one catch. Fred Davis had two, but isn't being used enough. Anthony Armstrong was inactive. Why again isn't Devin Thomas being used. Is he so bad that he can't match what those guys are doing?

- DeAngelo Hall. After this week's "My Defense" rant, you would expect him to shut down the player(s) he's covering, or at least contain them and/or make a few big plays. The good news is that he really has become a decent tackler for a corner (I don't think he's at Carlos Rogers/Kevin Barnes level of nastiness but he's better than guys from the Deion Sanders school of CB). The bad news is that he was getting beat all day on various routes by guys who aren't close to being a top 10 WR in the league.

- Stephon Heyer. Two key holding calls and giving up pressure all day. I don't blame him really. He's just not a starting caliber LT. He can be an average starting RT and maybe play LT for a few snaps a game in a pinch but as a starter he's a liability and the Redskins didn't give him enough help.

- D-line. I like Adam Carriker but we have some serious problems at NT and DE. There is little push and little pressure from this unit. Haynesworth only seems "with it" in 4-3 sets and that's hit and miss.

The Ugly

- Skins deserved to lose this game. They looked horrible. They only seem to play hard when they face teams they're not supposed to beat or have about a 50/50 chance of winning. The good news is that the next three challengers should be highly favored to beat the Skins (@ Eagles, vs. Packers, vs. Colts)

- Skins fall to 2nd place in the NFCE. The Eagles are now the team on top with the win today and the Skins loss.

- Skins have lost 11 of the last 12 road games. Not good especially based on who they play at FedEx this season and the fact that the Skins aren't that much better at home.

Since I missed Friday Night Videos here are a few videos that have made me laugh. I hope they make you laugh as well. They have nothing to do with the Redskins or football. The Redskin fans could use a laugh today.

First, The Count from Sesame St. and how bleeping words turns a harmless song about counting into something very perverted and funny.

Next, the literal interpretation of the Men Without Hats song "Safety Dance"

hope this @ Eagles.

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