DeAngelo Hall said that the Redskins defense has a secondary full of misfits when speaking to the media yesterday. He said it with a smile but there was more truth in his statement than he or anyone else might care to admit. Here is the background of some players who should be major contributors to in the secondary this year:Brandon MeriweatherHes with his third team in the past 12 months. Meriweather has had a few brushes with the law including a recent 180-day suspended jail sentence in connection with a DUI charge.Tanard JacksonAfter coming off of a one-year suspension for violating the leagues substance abuse policy, Jackson signed a contract extension with the Bucs last October. They cut him in April.Madieu WilliamsHe played sparingly in San Francisco last year after they signed him as a free agent.DeJon GomesA fifth-round draft pickReed DoughtyAny time he is in the lineup, Redskins fans point the finger at him anytime the opposition makes a big play. Sometimes its warranted, sometimes its not.Cedric GriffinHe tore the ACL in his left knee playing in the NFC title game for the Vikings in January of 2010. He rehabbed and was back later that calendar year for Minnesotas Week 5 game. Then, in Week 5, he tore the ACL on his right knee.Josh WilsonWhen he signed as a free agent last year, the Redskins were his third team in three years. After the 2009 season Seattle traded him to Baltimore and the Ravens let him go as a free agent at the end of 2010.Raheem MorrisThe secondary coach was one of the youngest head coaches in NFL history at the age of 32 when the Bucs promoted from position coach straight to head coach after firing Jon Gruden. He probably was one of the youngest head coaches ever fired after Tampa Bay lost its last 10 games of last seasonAlthough Hall has been a staple in the Redskins secondary for a while, he fits the misfit mold as well. He complained his way out of Atlanta after the 2007 season. The Raiders gave up a second-round pick to get him and gave him seven-year, 70 million contract. They cut him halfway into the first year of the deal.The misfits label may or may not stick, but the shoe certainly does fit.
There are no big surprises on the Redskins’ inactive list Monday before the Eagles matchup:
- CB Josh Norman
- OL Tyler Catalina
- OL Ty Nsekhe
- DL A.J. Francis
- TE Jeremy Sprinkle
- OLB Josh Harvey-Clemons
- S Deshazor Everett
Cornerback Bashaud Breeland, who suffered a knee injury last Sunday against the 49ers, is active. With Norman out, that is very good news for the Redskins’ chances.
Norman was declared out on the final injury report. He reportedly wanted to play with a broken rib that he sustained on October 3 against the Chiefs. But the medical staff would not clear him to play and Norman will miss his second consecutive game. Quinton Dunbar will start in his place.
Reserve offensive linemen Catalina (concussion) and Nsekhe (core muscle) also were declared out on Saturday.
Starting RB Rob Kelley returns after missing the 49ers game with an ankle injury.
Here is what you need to know on this Monday, October 23, six days before the Washington Redskins play the Dallas Cowboys at FedEx Field.
Today’s schedule: Redskins vs. Eagles, 8:30 pm, ESPN
—Redskins @ Seahawks (11/5) 13
—Giants @ Redskins Thanksgiving (11/23) 31
Final report on injures of note:
Out: CB Josh Norman (rib),
Questionable: OT Trent Williams (knee)CB Bashaud Breeland (knee), S Deshazor Everett (hamstring), RB Rob Kelley (ankle),
See the full injury report and analysis here
Final thoughts on Redskins vs Eagles
—The first time these teams met, both scored defensive touchdowns. Ryan Kerrigan got the first Redskins points on the board with a pick six of Carson Wentz in the second quarter. With a minute and a half left, Fletcher Cox wrapped up the game for his team with a 20-yard return of a very controversial fumble. The difference tonight could well be a defensive or special teams score.
—In that game, the Redskins never let the Eagles get any sort of running game going. The Eagles rushed for 54 yards, the second-lowest total for a Washington opponent this year. And they had 24 attempts (2.4 yards per) so it wasn’t as though they didn’t try. The Redskins could use another strong effort against the run this time as well.
—I examined third downs in the first look at this game a few days ago. Since then, this was bought to my attention.
Third downs could be a fatal flaw for the Redskins. The Eagles’ ability to convert third and long situations was a key to them being able to survive without much of a running game in the opener. The Redskins need to hold the Eagles to 40 percent or less on all third downs and to 25 percent or less on third and long. And they will have to do it without Josh Norman, their best defensive back.
—In the first meeting, the matchup of the Redskins’ offensive line and the Eagles’ defensive front went decidedly in Philly’s direction. Washington rushed for just 64 yards and Kirk Cousins was sacked four times. There were plenty of concerns about the line, especially RT Morgan Moses, who gave up two sacks, and RG Brandon Scherff, who gave up four total pressures. Those two and the unit as a whole have been better since that game. The Redskins’ front will need to win that battle this time around.
Prediction: A Week 7 game is not really a must-win when you have a winning record. There is a lot of season left to be played. But if the Redskins are going to take the next step and stay in the thick of things for the ideal playoff seeding, they need to take this one. This year in the NFL, just when everyone thinks they have things figured out something happens to flip the script. Everyone now figures that the Eagles are the best team in the NFC and perhaps the best in the NFL. They are ripe for an upset.
Redskins 24, Eagles 20
Season prediction record: 2-3
In case you missed it
- No Norman Against Eagles
- Five Redskins under pressure vs. the Eagles
- Plenty of factors weigh on Trent Williams' knee
- Week 7 Redskins-Eagles Preview: Monday night madness