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5 observations from Redskins' 26-20 win over Vikings

5 observations from Redskins' 26-20 win over Vikings

Here are my five observations from the Redskins’ 26-20 win over the Vikings:

—The Redskins are in the sequel business. They produced Scary Movie 3 in the final two minutes of this game. Three times this year the defense has taken the field with the Redskins up by less than a touchdown in the last minutes of the game. Against the Ravens, they survived. In Detroit, they lost. Today, they pulled it out again with back-to-back sacks on third- and fourth-down plays. There is little doubt that another installment in the series is upcoming at some point in the season.

—There is a lot of head scratching over why the offense jumped out to a 14-0 lead and then stalled out for the remainder of the first half. No need to wonder, the simple answer is that it’s the NFL. Teams adjust to what is working for you. It takes some time to adjust back. They did and scored on four straight second-half possessions.


—And there will be questions about the defense giving up 20 unanswered points in the second quarter. Same answer but on the other side. The Redskins have now held opponents to 20 points or fewer in five of their last six games. That will win you a lot of games and the Redskins are 4-1 in those games. I think Jay Gruden will be happy to take his chances if they can do that week after week.

—Rob Kelley just missed his first career 100-yard game, getting a career high 97 yards on 22 carries. All day long as I watched him on the field he kept on turning what looked like a loss of two into a gain of one. It would look like he was going to gain two yards and then all of a sudden he had six. It’s not like he’s bowling people over but he has that instinct that tells him where he should slide to and he keeps his legs churning. I still think that Matt Jones will play a role this year but Kelley deserves to be the lead dog at the running back spot.

—Preston Smith had the game we’ve been looking for from him all year. He made two huge plays, the fourth-quarter interception that gave stopped a promising Vikings drive and gave the Redskins a chance to put it away. They didn’t quite nail the door shut. Smith did that on the last offensive play of the game, getting a fourth-down sack of Sam Bradford. The Redskins hope that this starts a big second half of the season for Smith.


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Ryan Grant reportedly signing with Colts after failed physical with Ravens

USA Today Sports Images

Ryan Grant reportedly signing with Colts after failed physical with Ravens

It looks like Ryant Grant has found his new home, again.

After a failed physical with the Ravens, James Jones of NFL Network reports Grant plans to sign with the Colts.


Grant originally agreed to a four-year, $29 million deal with the Ravens, before the team pulled the offer citing an ankle injury that dated to the Redskins' final regular-season game, according to reports.

Baltimore eventually signed Michael Crabtree to a three-year deal, while Grant had visits with the Colts and Raiders.

His agent, Rocky Arceneaux, says Grant has been working out, running routes, and his ankle had been cleared by Dr. Robert Anderson in a second opinion.

In 2017 with the Redskins, he appeared in all 16 games, with 45 receptions for 573 yards and four touchdowns.


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Redskins bring in another defensive lineman for free agency visit, per source


Redskins bring in another defensive lineman for free agency visit, per source

The Redskins hosted Sylvester Williams for a free agency visit on Tuesday morning, per a source with knowledge of the situation. 

Williams played in 2017 with the Titans, logging 20 tackles in 11 starts. Tennessee released Williams this offseason, just one year into a three-year, $16 million deal. 

Drafted in the first round by the Broncos in 2013, the 6-foot-3, 313 lbs. Williams' stat line has never really popped. That isn't uncommon for a nose tackle though, as the job is less about tackles than it is holding leverage against the interior of an offensive line. 


Should the Redskins sign 29-year-old Williams, it would represent the first true nose tackle free agency addition since Terrance "Pot Roast" Knighton joined the team in 2015 from Denver. In an ironic twist, Williams took over at nose in Denver when Knighton left for Washington, and posted his best season as a Bronco. 

Washington restructured its deal with Terrell McClain, reported first by ESPN, which could allow more flexibility to add another defensive lineman. That could come in the draft, but the club has been very active talking with free agents to play on the defensive front. 

On Monday, Johnathan Hankins and Pernell McPhee visited with Redskins officials in Ashburn. Hankins would carry the heaviest price tag, but his past performance would also indicate the most promise. 

McPhee is an edge rusher with enough bulk to play against the run as well. Williams compares more with Hankins, and could be seen as the secondary option.

Among 79 nose tackles Pro Football Focus graded, Williams ranked 36th. For comparison, Bengals star Geno Atkins ranked No. 1, Dontari Poe ranked 26th, former Redskin Chris Baker ranked 65th and current Redskin Ziggy Hood ranked 79th. 

It's also worth noting that since the Titans released Williams, should the Redskins sign the nose tackle, his contract would not count towards the NFL compensatory pick formula. 

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