Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Week Six: 10 Observations Of The Redskins Vs Jets Game

After six weeks starting at Qb, Kirk Cousins has eight ints and six touchdowns. His ball placement was terrible for the second week straight and he's still trying to force the ball into tight spots. I'm not sure how much longer Coach Gruden can justify not making a quarterback change.
Via Topbet.eu

 Hail RedskinsNation!!!!! Another week in the NFL schedule but it sure looked and felt like last week to me. Once again another lights out performance by the defense until they were unable to dig any deeper to continue stopping their opponent. Two weeks in a row the defense has put the offense in ideal positions to blow games wide open but it just hasn't worked out that way. It was already a tough match up on the road against a tough defense. Add in basically a rookie offensive line and 2 out of 3 of your main offensive play makers sidelined. Kirk's int's and the offense just plain ineffectiveness helps kill the defense faster than the opponent . The most upsetting thing is our 3rd quarter performances all year. The Redskins are being outscored 46-3 in the 3rd and that's supposed to be after adjustments are made. I don't know if Gruden is calling all the plays but it might be time to let Sean McVay take over some of the play calling duties. One of a few bright spots for the team was a blocked punt for TD by the constantly improving special teams unit. No one talks about this unit until they screw up but you have to give credit to Coach Kotwica and his assistants for getting these guys
Another stellar game for Breeland. He keeps this up he will make the
Pro Bowl and possibly 2nd team All Pro defense in his 2nd season.
Via Redskins.com
up and ready. Joe Barry also deserves credit with all the injuries they still are playing at a high level. I know I spotlight him every week but every week he"s doing outstanding things trying to help this team win. It's second year standout, shutdown cornerback Bashaud Breeland. In the game he had 2 passes defended 2 fumble recoveries 4 tackles (3 solo) and a top 10 worthy int late in the game. This kid is gonna be something special for us for years to come. Now to my observations:

  For two weeks in a row the defense has produced three turnovers (six in the last 2 games) and have only scored 16 points ( not sure if the blocked punt for TD counted as a turnover) off of those turnovers. Have to start getting 7 instead of  settling for 3. With DeSean Jackson and Jordan Reed on the mend there return should open things up for this offense especially in the red zone.

Via Redskins.com

  The front seven has been playing well for the most part but there are stretches where a big play needs to be made and this unit can help in that area. Need to cause a turnover or a big sack to stop momentum by the other team. I feel that will be coming soon with the D line getting more and more familiar with each other.

  All the points that were scored yesterday were scored off of turnovers, which is a good thing but also not a good thing. What gets missed is that the offense didn't produce any points based off of their ability to drive the ball. That should be a red flag for any offense. Jay needs to listen to some of his assistants for some advice and learn to mix up his play calls better.

 The trick play attempted in the third quarter was a good idea at the time to try and catch the defense off guard but execution was ruined this play. He has to start mixing up his play calls more and using more misdirection, especially with all the injuries on offense.

  I've been speaking about Kirk's ball placement the last three weeks. Now it's to the point where he's getting receivers hurt or in a position to get hurt. By him not leading them out of danger with his passes sometimes he leads them to it. When he is putting the ball on the inside shoulder instead of the outside shoulder or throwing behind the receiver instead of in front when he has nothing but open field in front of him.

  An encouraging sign is the reduction in penalties over the last few games. The team didn't get an accepted  penalty against them until the middle of the fourth quarter. That"s very impressive being that the previous games were all double digit penalty games except for the St. Louis game.

  I'm not understanding Jay only giving Alfred Morris the ball 11 times and on top of that is reluctant to use Darrel Young, one of the best all around fullbacks in the NFL. Instead of 3 WRs 2 TEs and 1 RB which leaves Morris one on one in the hole. We all know Morris is a north south runner with power but doesn't have the moves to make someone miss. So instead of lining up with 2 WRs 2 TEs and 2 RBs then you have more balance and a blocking back to enable Morris to make one cut and go which is what he excels at.

Via redskins.com
 Jamison Crowder is making plays week in and week out and by doing so he's increased his playing time. With his speed and quickness he can be a real attribute in the slot when DeSean Jackson comes back. Once the defenses will have to key more on D Jax then other things will open up elsewhere in the passing and running game. This rookie is making his presence felt on offense and special teams. I still believe that he is the reason Andre Roberts will be cut at the end of the season.

Via redskins.com
 Looking to get more pass rush generated, I think it's time to put Preston Smith in the starting lineup. Trent Murphy, I thought had turned the corner with his play a few weeks back. Since that game he
has disappeared again. Ryan Kerrigan can't wreak havoc on his side if the opposite linebacker isn't getting any push. More pressure leads to more turnovers which leads to more points (hopefully touchdowns in the future) which leads to victories.

  One of the under the radar moves made early this season was the signing of kicker Dustin Hopkins after the team cut Kai Forbath. We loved Kai's accuracy but his leg strength on kickoffs was a problem from day one and ultimately sealed his fate. Ironically Forbath was just signed to the New Orleans Saints today after they cut the ex redskins 2014 draft pick Zach Hocker earlier in the week. Dustin has came in and not missed a beat connecting on 9 out of 10 attempts with a long of 54 yards. His kickoffs are always deep and mostly out of the end zone. Just another piece to the special teams unit that is finally showing improvement, getting better field position and scoring points.

  Next week we have a interesting match up with the (2-3)Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the #1 pick quarterback Jameis Winston. Not knowing the situation with the secondary right now this is gonna be a tough matchup. Tampa has the biggest WRs ,TE combination with Vincent Jackson, Mike Evans and Austin Seferian-Jenkins.  All three are 6'5" and are extremely hard to bring down after making the catch. Plus Doug Martin is playing like he did in his standout rookie season of 2012. The Redskins defense should have another multiple turnover day with the rookie under center. Winston has seven int's this season and 2 returned for TDs. The defense could help motivate the offense if they're able to put some points on the board.

   As always #HTTR. You can follow me on Twitter @TattooedScorpio or on Facebook Carroll Porter III. Feel free to inbox, direct message or comment any questions, thoughts for topics of discussion or just to talk sports in general. If any local residents are interested in volunteering at one of the concession stands at FedEx Field during games for community service hours or just because. Check out the flyer below and give my good friend Demetrius Hendrix a call for more details.  Stay tuned for other community service events through YAS Sports Academy. #HTTR #BeatDaBucs

Monday, October 12, 2015

Week Five: 10 Observations Of The Redskins Vs Falcons

Despite a lights out performance by the defense, ( Bashaud Breeland especially) the Redskins came up short in a badly coached yet well played game. Coach Gruden made some head scratching playcalls yesterday that had more to do with the loss then the untimely second interception of the game in overtime by Kirk Cousins.
Via Realredskins.com
 Hail RedskinsNation!!!! After a well played, questionably coached game the Redskins loss a heart breaker to the Falcons in overtime. Kirk Cousins had a bad game at quarterback after the well played comeback victory performance from a week ago. Constantly throwing behind receivers in traffic, throwing too high to receivers when they were wide open and making bad decisions rounded out his bad. On the good side, he's still showing command of the offense and the huddle, has a great tempo and rhythm going, and he is progressing with every start. The only problem is with the progression, he sometimes regresses like he did yesterday with some of his decision making. The one play (besides the game ending int) that showed this to me the most was the first interception. After several failed attempts at getting Pierre Garcon the ball, Kirk once again forced a ball to Pierre on a 3rd and 10 play. Difference this time is if he would've hit his hot read (Chris Thompson) with the pressure coming Thompson, who had open field and a LB on him that almost certainly wouldn't have been able to stop the eventual 1st down. Against one of the more potent offenses in the NFL, this defense held it's own and made a statement. With both starting cornerbacks out, everyone just knew that the Falcons would be able to throw the ball up and down the field all day. Well Bashaud Breeland and Will Blackmon had something to say about that, and proved next man up is alive and well in the Washington locker room....finally. Now to my 10 observations:
Via Redskins.com

 Kirk Cousins has to improve  his accuracy beyond 15 yards, consistency of ball placement, decision making, when and how far to lead a receiver. I've stated several times this season that he's constantly leaving yards and points on the field, and yesterday's game was a prime example of it.
Via Redskins.com

  Coach has to get the running game going with better play selection and consistency of sticking with the run. Once again more passes then rushes and in a close game no less. I can understand if the Redskins were behind the whole game and had to throw but we had the lead for most of the game. In our two victories we had over 25 rushing attempts. This loss 24 rushes 32 passes.

 With Jordan Reed sidelined with concussion symptoms, if would be smart to start using two running back sets with Chris Thompson as the constant. He creates mismatches and will take the key off of the other running back and allow more room in the box for Alfred and Matt to do their thing. (New nickname for the trio is PSP Power-Speed-Patience) With DeSean Jackson out it makes it even easier for defenses to drop the 8th man down in the box to stop the run. The two back approach and better utilization of the screen game will help open running lanes too.

 I understand Jay Gruden is still learning on the job in his second season but some of his play calls and selection are truly head scratchers. The pass happy approach is okay when needed but running the ball is what got us the two wins so far this season and will lead to more victories. He also has to start making quicker and better adjustments to counter what the defense does or is doing to slow the offense. Not expecting perfection but progression, just like Kirk he seems to regress some weekly also.

Via Redskins.com

 Defensive Coordinator Joe Barry has the defense rallying to the ball, hitting hard, making solid tackles, getting off the field on third downs and finally creating some turnovers. This up and coming
defensive unit has a new attitude, nastiness and aggressiveness that has been missing for a long time. I believe Bashaun Breeland will be a top notch shutdown corner in this league.

  Even though there's only one healthy starter left in the secondary that started week 1 (Dashon Goldston). The secondary with back up players starting, two weeks in a row have helped shut down two potent and dangerous offenses. With the pressure from the front seven and solid coverage by the back end, this defense could definitely be a top 10 unit. I said in a precious article that the defense would be the key to this teams success and it's looking like that will be the storyline of this season.

 Once again the young guys on the roster are stepping up and making play after play, which is a great sign for this organization. With Scot McCloughan at the helm with all player decisions this team is in good hands. The attitude, mentality, fight and overall talent level has improved immensely. Player development has been a issue here for a while, It's refreshing to see a change in a positive direction, hopefully this continues for years to come.

Via Redskins.com

  With the emergence of Jamison Crowder, it's a safe bet to make that Andre Roberts Redskins career will be over at the end of the season. His deal he signed just two short years ago was front loaded wit guaranteed money and the option to cut after two years with minimum cap hit. Crowder is making an impact on special teams along with the WR corp. This kid is making  name for himself. Making good decisions on special teams, grabbing big third down catches, or just giving that extra effort on every play trying to do something to help this team win.

     I don't like complaining about officiating  but the NFL has got to do something about consistency of penalty calls. Have to call the game fair, consistent and equal for all involved. Two weeks in a row our defenders have been hit with unnecessary roughness penalties for what I'd say should've been no calls. Referees influence should be limited but a bad call here and a missed call there changes the whole complexion of the game. Down, distance, field position, play call, time of possession etc etc.  The only solution they have now is a letter on Tuesday morning saying we screwed up. Now that doesn't help that team or that coach but we the fans are supposed to consider this game fair and equal.

  My last observation/question still has me wondering and want to reach out to a league official. I recall the rule had been modified a few years back regarding fumbles and recoveries of them. Stating that in order for a fumble to be advanced by the recovering team (If the offense that turned it over) the player that fumbled it has to recover it in order to advance it. If that's the new rule how is it that Devante Freeman clearly fumbled on the 5 yard line yet Julio Jones was allowed to recover the ball for a touchdown?

 Next week another tough matchup out of the AFC East, the hard hitting (3-1) New York Jets. This will be another interesting game. The Jets once again have a potent defense but this year the offense is making steps in the right direction. Ryan Fitzpatrick, Brandon Marshall, and Chris Ivory are the catalyst to this up and coming offense that has other weapons too. Our defense must show up again and have a multi sack, mutli turnover game to help the inconsistent offense. Another game that will no doubt come down to who has the ball last.

  As always #HTTR. You can follow me on Twitter @TattooedScorpio or on Facebook Carroll Porter III. Feel free to inbox, direct message or comment any questions, thoughts for topics of discussion or just to talk sports in general. If any local residents are interested in volunteering at one of the concession stands at FedEx Field during games for community service hours or just because. Check out the flyer below and give my good friend Demetrius Hendrix a call for more details.  Stay tuned for other community service events through YAS Sports Academy. #HTTR #BeatDaJets



Monday, October 5, 2015

Week Four: 10 Observations Of The Redskins Vs Eagles

With both the Redskins and Eagles coming in 1-2 this game was very important to both teams, knowing starting the season 1-3 would be a nail in their coffin for making a playoff push. As always a hard hitting division game that went down to the wire.
Via Espn.go

  Hail Redskins Nation!!!! Once again #VictoryMonday is upon us after a hard fought division game that I'm sure had everyone (myself included) yelling at their television.  After last weeks loss to the Giants, I didn't know what to expect from Coach Gruden and his play calling. I was very disappointed in his calls last week and for some of this game, I had that same feeling but luckily this week it didn't cost us the game. Only knock I have on the play caller is that sometimes he gets pass happy even when the run game is effective. This week was a little different, the run wasn't as effective but instead of keep feeding Alfred Morris the ball, Kirk Cousins ended up throwing the ball 46 times. Only 32 rush attempts for the game and in the second half the bulk of rushes came on the game winning drive. Not trying to rain on the parade but the coach has to stick the run to wear the defense down. Luckily this worked to the Redskins advantage this week by converting third downs and going on long time consuming drives. Holding the ball for over 40 mins and keeping the Eagles quick strike but inconsistent offense on the sideline.  With the large time of possession discrepancy there is no way this game should've needed a 4th quarter game winning drive. But all in all it was a full 60 min effort from all three phases and came out with a much needed division win. Also it's the first time the team has won back to back home games since 2013. Now let's get to my 10 observations:

  Kirk Cousins looked very comfortable running the offense, but like Robert Griffin when he was under center, he's leaving
Via Realredskins.com
yards and points on the field. He has to get better at leading receivers on the mid to intermediate routes. Several times if he would've led the receiver a little more, instead of it being a 5-10 yard run after the catch it could've gone for 20 yards or more after the catch.

 The three TE formation that was so effective against the Rams, seems like Jay is scared to use it even tho it's been successful. It opens up the run and the passing game. If u recall when Kirk threw out of that formation Pierre Garcon was practically wide open on the same slant play each time.

Via RiggosRag.com
  Chris Thompson, Jamison Crowder, and Rashad Ross all took advantage of their time on the field. All three came up wit huge, timely plays that converted first downs at crucial and critical times. If these players develop to their full potential, it could make this offense that much more potent. (DeSean Jackson looks to be be within 2 weeks)

  The offensive line did a good job opening up holes and keeping the quarterback upright. Giving up only one sack and the running game produced 127 yards ( lowest output of the season). With Spencer Long getting his first start alongside Trent Williams, he had his bright spots and some rookie moments but overall did a good job at LG.

  Trent Murphy (not more then two weeks ago I stated that he was in jeopardy of losing his starting
Via Redskins.com
job to Preston Smith) had his breakout performance. With two tackles, only credited with one sack (should've got a 1/2 sack on Baker's second sack and a 1/2 sack on Ryan Kerrigan's sack) fumble recovery and a string of plays that help close out the Eagles in the final seconds of the fourth quarter.

  Chris Culliver obviously wasn't 100% and Sam Bradford exposed and exploited him all second half of the game. DeAngelo Hall hopefully be back in the starting lineup soon so that Culliver can move back to the slot where he is more effective. Bashaud Breeland is turning into a solid, physical and shutdown cornerback.

   The linebackers, led by Keenan Robinson have been lights out. In coverage, filling the gaps, stopping the run, holding the edge Will Compton (led team wit seven tackles) has been filling in very nicely for Perry Riley (I said Compton would get the starting job at some point this season) and Ryan Kerrigan should've had a three sacks, instead of a single sack.

  Jay Gruden has to go back to the Rams gameplan and use that philosophy going forward. The three TE set is a great play design, causes mismatches and has big play potential. In that game I believe it was just about 50/50 run to pass ratio and that is the formula for success. The redzone offense needs a better design, flow and some misdirection. To me it's become predictable.

  Joe Barry has silenced a lot of his critics with performance of the defensive unit the first quarter of the season. The run defense is only giving up 78 yards a game, nine sacks (five sacks vs Eagles), and four forced fumbles and recovering three. Unfortunately no int's as of yet, but with all the injuries/suspensions and rotation of new bodies that's to be expected. As long as they're playing good coverage then I'm good.

Via Redskins.com
 Last but certainly not least, the special teams unit has played well the last two games. Last week  with Rashad Ross had a 101 yard kickoff return and this week after Darren Sproles  split the defenders and was on his way to changing momentum and returning a punt for the second week in a row. But punter Tres Way got in his way weaving thru the wall of blockers to slow him just enough so Jackson Jeffcoat could force him out of bounds. I know fans are upset that he broke loose but the fact that everyone played through the play and didn't quit was a sign of improvement.

   Next week the Redskins travel to the 4-0 Atlanta Falcons for the toughest test of the season so far. Kyle Shanahan has implemented his offense and it has taken the Falcons offense and whole team to a different level. We must contain Julio Jones and their spark plug running back Devonta Freeman. He can run through you or past you. The defense is gonna have to be stout again in order for this team to win in that loud dome. Kirk will have to have another mistake free game and make timely throws when needed. All in all should be a good game that once again will come down to the fourth quarter.

    As always #HTTR. You can follow me on Twitter @TattooedScorpio or on Facebook Carroll Porter III. Feel free to inbox, direct message or comment any questions, thoughts for topics of discussion or just to talk sports in general. If any local residents are interested in volunteering at FedEx Field during games for community service hours or just because. Check out the flyer below.  Hail and enjoy #VictoryMonday #BeatDaFalcons