Here is what you need to know on this Monday, November 23, six days before the Redskins host the New York Giants.
Notes and numbers from Panthers 44, Redskins 15
CHAROLOTTE—A few notes from the Redskins’ loss to the Panthers:
—DeSean Jackson’s 56-yard touchdown reception in the second quarter was the 22nd TD catch of 50 or more yards in his career. That ties him with Joey Galloway for fifth in the NFL since the 1970 merger. It was his 51st reception (scoring or not) of over 50 yards, the most in the NFL since he came into the league in 2008.
—The Redskins rushed for 14 yards, the second fewest in a game in team history. They ran for 10 yards in a 1994 game against the Bucs.
—Andre Roberts returned a second-quarter kickoff 99 yards for a touchdown. It was the first kickoff return for a touchdown of his career.
—The Redskins have now scored three special teams touchdowns this year. They scored no special teams touchdowns in the previous three seasons, from 2012-2014.
- Week 3 at Giants-- Rashad Ross 101 yard kickoff return TD
- Week 6 at Jets-- Rashad Ross blocked punt return for TD
- Week 11 at Panthers-- Andre Roberts 99 yard kickoff return TD
— Including a 101-yard kickoff return touchdown by Rashad Ross in Week 3, the Redskins tied a team record with two kickoff return touchdowns in a single season for the fourth time in team history (2005, 1947, 1942).
—Cam Newton threw four touchdown passes in the first half, the most ever thrown in the first half against the Redskins. Randall Cunningham threw four touchdown passes in the second half of a game in 1989.
—Today’s schedule: Jay Gruden news conference 3 p.m.
—Days until: Giants @ Redskins 6; Monday night Cowboys @ Redskins 14; Redskins @ Bears 20
In case you missed it
After missing the last eight games, the Redskins brought back place-kicker Dustin Hopkins from the injured reserve and waived Nick Rose.
Hopkins became eligible to return from the IR this week and took part in practice all week. Jay Gruden wouldn't commit to one kicker or the other when he spoke earlier in the week, but the decision came down on Saturday.
Rose played well in Hopkins' absence, making 10 of 11 field goals including a 55-yarder. The rookie Rose had some struggles with extra points, missing two of his 20 attempts, though neither snap/hold combination was totally clean either.
RELATED: REDSKINS-CARDINALS PREVIEW
Hopkins has the stronger leg and is capable of booting the ball out of the end zone on seemingly every kickoff. With Rose as kicker, at times the Redskins deployed a different strategy where kicks were aimed for the goal line, forcing a return.
Washington's kicker for parts of the last three seasons, Hopkins has a career 84 percent field goal conversion rate and 94.6 percent conversion rate on extra points in 36 games.
The Redskins sent Hopkins to the IR after a Week 6 win over the 49ers with a right hip rotator muscle injury.
MORE REDSKINS: SLOW STARTS HAVE BEEN KILLING THE REDSKINS
For the second consecutive game, the Redskins got blown out on the road. First in Dallas, then in Los Angeles, Jay Gruden's team is reeling with mounting questions and pressures about 2018 and beyond.
The best way to calm down the flames? Get a win.
Washington will have that chance on Sunday at 1 p.m. (full coverage on NBC Sports Washington at noon) when they host the Arizona Cardinals. Getting the victory won't be easy, however, no matter how bad the Redskins need it.
- Turn the page - The Redskins have lost their last two games by a combined score of 68-27. The results have been terrible, and the outcome in Los Angeles could have been much uglier had the Chargers not pulled starting QB Philip Rivers. Still, those games are over, and Washington needs to focus on the Cardinals. Gruden spoke this week that his team cannot "wallow" in the past two losses. If the Redskins are looking back at their lost season, instead of looking squarely at Arizona, another blowout loss is likely to come.
- Get it going - Kirk Cousins and the Redskins offense had by far their worst statistical output last week in LA. The offense must get back on track, and that means a better performance from Cousins and the 'Skins run game. Against the Chargers, Washington generated only 201 total yards and just nine first downs. Nine, their second worst total since having only 15 first downs against the Cowboys the week before. At this stage of the season, the Redskins defense will not win this team any games. The offense must do it, and that means improved play from the line, the quarterback and the skill positions.
- Make a play - Turnovers can win or lose games, and in their last two blowout losses, it's no surprise the Redskins have been on the wrong end of the ledger. Washington has five turnovers in their last two games, and has generated only one takeaway in that span. (It can be argued that shouldn't even count, as it came on an interception from Chargers backup Kellen Clemens in the final minutes of a blowout.) Washington ranks dead last in the NFL in points per game allowed, and that won't improve with linebacker Zach Brown out this weekend. Generating turnovers, particularly against Arizona QB Blaine Gabbert, should be the defensive focus.
Quote of the Week: Jay Gruden, asked about preparation before the Chargers game-
We didn't spend last week playing checkers.
News & Notes:
- Gabbert has been sacked 15 times in the Cardinals last two games. Washington comes into Week 15 with the 13th most sacks in the league.
- The Cardinals defense ranks in the Top 10 in yards per play, yards per game, and rush yards per game. Despite that, Arizona's defense ranks 25th in points allowed.
- D.J. Swearinger, who played for Arizona last season before signing in Washington as a free agent, is tied for fourth in the NFC in interceptions.
- Jordan Reed won't be playing this week, or the remainder of the season. Washington moved Reed to the injured reserve this week.
- Arizona coach Bruce Arians was a college quarterback at Virginia Tech from 1972 to 1974.
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