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Need to Know: Final thoughts on Redskins vs. Cardinals

Need to Know: Final thoughts on Redskins vs. Cardinals

Here is what you need to know on this Sunday, December 17, seven days before the Washington Redskins play the Denver Broncos at FedEx Field.


Today’s schedule: Redskins Kickoff, noon, NBC Sports Washington; Redskins vs. Cardinals, 1 pm, FOX

Days until:

—Broncos @ Redskins Christmas Eve (12/24) 7
—Redskins @ Giants (12/17) 14
—NFL Draft (4/26/18) 130

Final thoughts on Redskins vs Cardinals

Key news and information:

Home field: The Cardinals are 2-4 on the road this year with the two wins coming against the 3-11 Colts and the 3-10 49ers. But the Redskins haven’t exactly torn it up at FedEx Field, going 3-3 with none of the wins coming over teams that have winning records. There are tickets selling for as little as six bucks on StubHub; you can get into the lower bowl for $14. Although there is not likely to be a Cardinals fan takeover, the Redskins could have some trouble generating much noise to support them.

Run game: The matchup the Redskins should be most concerned about is their running game against the Cardinals rushing defense. In the standard stats, Arizona is seventh in rushing yards allowed and fourth in yards per attempt. If you want to go advanced stats, Football Outsiders says that their rushing defense is third in the league as measured by DVOA. The Redskins are 4-24 under Jay Gruden when they rush for less than 90 yards. The Cardinals have allowed over 90 yards rushing five times this season, although it should be noted that they have given up at least 108 yards in each of their last three games.

Cousins bounce back: Kirk Cousins had arguably his worst game as a starter against the Chargers last week. He passed for 151 yards, his lowest total in any career game that he started and finished. Cousins didn’t appear to see some open receivers and he frequently was off target when he did find guys with some separation. The Redskins need him to come up big. He doesn’t necessarily have to be great for his team to win, just competent.

Other keys to a win:

  • Don’t let Blaine Gabbert beat you. He has been sacked 15 times in his last two games. The Cardinals are 2-2 in his four starts and he has thrown two interceptions in each of the losses. The Redskins, who have a defense that mostly is healthy, need to get the sacks and the picks to keep the Arizona offense at bay.
  • Cardinals linebacker Chandler Jones has 14 sacks, nearly half of Arizona’s total of 31. He has been steady, with at least one sack in 11 of the Cardinals’ 13 games. Jones usually lines up on the right side so it will be up to Trent Williams or, if he can’t go, Ty Nsekhe to slow him down.

Prediction: Earlier this week on the Redskins Talk podcast (you can listen to it below) I predicted a fairly easy win for the Redskins. The more I think about it, the more I’m not so sure. A Redskins rout is possible if the defense can do its part with sacks and takeaways. But nothing comes easy for the 2017 Redskins. I think they’ll win the game but if I was concerned about the point spread for entertainment or other purposes I might take the visitors and the four points.

Redskins 17, Cardinals 14

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.

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Terrelle Pryor reportedly closing in on deal with new team

Terrelle Pryor reportedly closing in on deal with new team

Former Washington Redskin Terrelle Pryor may have found a new home after a tumultuous season in Washington.

The 28-year-old wide receiver appears to be on the way to the New York Jets for the 2018 season according to Ian Rappaport.

Last season, Pryor only played in nine games for Washington and was sent to injured reserve after Week 11. His season ended with ankle surgery and it closed the book on a short stint in the nation’s capital.

In his nine games, he never got on the same page with former Redskins’ quarterback Kirk Cousins. Targeted only 37 times, the six-year veteran only had 20 receptions for 240 yards and a single touchdown.

This is coming after a 1,000-yard season on the dismal Cleveland Browns team that went 1-15 in 2016. As a free-agent, he signed with Washington on a ‘prove-it’ deal for one-year, eight million last off-season. He was expected to a significant amount of touches alongside Josh Doctson.


With so much anticipation it was easy to say that Pryor’s lone season in Washington was a disappointment.

If he does sign with the Jets, Pryor joins a New York franchise that is still continuing to rebuild. They currently own the No. 3 overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft and are in search of a quarterback.  A year ago they finished 5-11 under third-year head coach Todd Bowles.

Transitioned to wide receiver in Cleveland, Pryor was drafted into the league as a quarterback.  He spent three seasons in Oakland (2011-13) all as a quarterback making 10 starts. In Cleveland (2015-16) he made the transition to wide receiver before going to Washington in 2017.


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Good news Redskins fans: Jason Pierre-Paul shipped out of NFC East


Good news Redskins fans: Jason Pierre-Paul shipped out of NFC East

The Giants shipped out Jason Pierre-Paul for life as a Buccaneer, and in turn, Tampa will send a third and fourth round draft pick to New York.

Moving Pierre-Paul comes at a curious time for the Giants. The team will eat $15 million of dead money in the move, and New York also sent a fourth-round pick to Tampa as part of the transaction. 

What it definitely signals is that Big Blue looks to be moving from a 4-3 base defense to a 3-4 look. Additionally, with the second overall pick in the NFL Draft in April, maybe the Giants will seriously look at NC State defensive lineman Bradley Chubb. 


For the Redskins, seeing Pierre-Paul leave the NFC East is welcome news. He has 12.5 career sacks against Washington QBs, the same amount he has against the Eagles and Cowboys combined. 

Want more Redskins? Click here to follow JP on Facebook and check out @JPFinlayNBCS for live updates via Twitter! Click here for the #RedskinsTalk on Apple Podcastshere for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!