Coaches generally don’t like to say that one game is more important than any other. But Redskins coach Jay Gruden wasn’t afraid to say that his 1-2 team’s game against the Eagles at FedEx Field on Sunday is a big one.
“The next one is always the most important one but when you're looking at the schedule the home and division games are very, very important,” said Gruden.
The Redskins had some difficulty wining at home and in the division in Gruden’s first year as the head coach. They were 2-4 in the NFC East, with wins over Dallas on the road and against the Eagles at home. In addition to Philly, they beat Jacksonville and Tennessee at FedEx Field, giving them a home record of 3-5.
At this point in the season, Gruden has his sights set on winning the division title.
“For us to win the division, we need to win our home games and we also need to win our division games,” said Gruden. “There's a lot of reasons for us to want to play and play well and have a sense of urgency. It's only week four but it is a very important game.”
Nobody seems to be running away with the division. The Cowboys are in the lead at 2-1 but they will be without Tony Romo and Dez Bryant for about half of the season. The Giants and Eagles are both 1-2 like the Redskins.
The chances of the Redskins winning the division are still slim but if they can’t beat the Eagles they would be on life support. Washington would already be 0-2 in the division, having lost to the Giants last week. They wouldn’t be eliminated with a loss but at 1-3 they would have a tough road ahead.