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Rich Tandler is the author of Gut Check, The Complete History of Coach Joe Gibbs’ Washington Redskins. Get details and order at http://gutcheckbook.com/
November 8, 2004
A few quick hits about Sunday’s game:
- Coming into this game, just a shade over half of the Redskins’ possessions this season have been three and outs or worse (48 of 96). Today, they improved that ratio to just 33% with four three and outs in 12 offensive possessions. Better, but half of the three and outs came on the Redskins’ last two possessions when they needed to grind out the clock.
- We now know Ola Kimbre’s range. After he hit the crossbar on that 51-yard field goal attempt in the dome, it’s safe to say that it’s about 49 ½ yards.
- James Thrash was clearly the player of the game. In fact, I’m so darned impressed with what he did today that I’m going to award him with the Redskins Blog’s first official game MVP award. Maybe I’ll come up with a clever title for it, maybe I won’t (your suggestions are welcome). His nifty punt return set up Washington’s first score and the three plays to down punts inside the five were the epitome of the cliché “those are the critical things that don’t show up on the stat sheet.” Chris Berman appreciated those plays on “NFL Prime Time” and put it best: “Once is an accident, two is a trend, three is evidence.”
- Of course, by granting game MVP status to Thrash, that means that, half a season into his Redskins career, Clinton Portis is already being taken for granted. Almost a buck and a half on the ground; add in his 15-yard TD pass and 11-yard reception and he accounts for over 75% of the Redskins offensive output. That’s very impressive for CP but a terrible statement about the state of the Washington offense.
- It’s not all on Brunell. There are drops, there is substandard pass blocking and there are some uninspired play calls. Bottom line, though is that the Redskins won’t be able to win many more of the games that are upcoming on their schedule with the putrid passing game they’ve exhibited for the entire season. Of course, if I were to tell Joe Gibbs this, he’d roll his eyes and say “Duh!” or something like that. I’m sure he and his staff are working the problem as we speak.
- It’s been quite a while since the Redskins have blocked a punt for a touchdown. In fact, I’m certain that the assembled Redskins beat writers and the team’s PR staff are scanning their copies of my book The Redskins From A to Z, Volume 1: The Games to find out when that last happened. I’ll let them report that particular bit of information. What you’ll find here tomorrow is the complete account of the game that the play happened in.
- How did the Redskins ever lose to the Cowboys?
Tomorrow, Bold Predictions analysis (delighted that my pick was wrong) and whatever else comes up.