Here is what you need to know on this Wednesday, January 6, four days before the Washington Redskins host the Green Bay Packers in a wild card playoff game.
Five first thoughts on Redskins vs. Packers
—The Packers are probably the toughest pass defense that the Redskins have faced since they played the Panthers in Week 11. Green Bay is better than any team that the Redskins have played in the last six games in terms of both opponent passer rating and net passing yards per attempt.
—However, the Packers do have some vulnerability to the deep pass. The have given up 14 passes of 40 yards or more, tied for the third most in the league. The Redskins hope that DeSean Jackson’s week off did him some good. The pressure will be on the offensive line to keep the Packers at bay (43 sacks, T-7th) and give Kirk Cousins time to find Jackson deep.
—That Carolina game was only game in the last seven where Cousins failed to post a passer rating of over 100. My guess is that if he doesn’t have a good day, a very good day, the Redskins won’t be able to win. Cousins has been carrying the team, the offensive part of it anyway, during their four-game winning streak. If it’s going to extend to five I think Cousins needs to go something like 28 of 35 for 325 yards with three touchdowns and no picks if the Redskins are going to survive and advance.
—It’s weakness meets weakness when the Redskins’ rushing offense is matched up against the Green Bay rush defense. Washington is 29th in the NFL with an average of 3.7 yards per carry. The Packers are 29th in the league giving up 4.5 yards per attempt. It’s an opportunity for the Redskins to get rolling on the ground and Alfred Morris did look more like his 2012-2014 self than he has most of this year.
—Even though Aaron Rodgers is having an off year by his standards, he’s still dangerous going off schedule and hitting receivers who are open because the defense lost track of them. He threw 31 touchdown passes and had just eight interceptions. On my schedule in the next couple of days is an article saying that the Redskins actually have an edge at the quarterback position in this game. And I believe that. But I wouldn’t be surprised at all if Rodgers drew on his well of postseason experience and pulled this one out for the Packers.
—Today’s schedule: Practice 11:35; Jay Gruden and Kirk Cousins news conferences and player availability after practice, approx. 1:30
—Days until: Redskins vs. Packers in wild card playoff game 4; Super Bowl 50 32
In case you missed it
- Lichtensteiger activated, Jarrett to IR
- Redskins sign veteran cornerback Cary Williams
- Here's the real reason Chris Baker was so happy on Sunday
- Look back at the Redskins road to the playoffs from Week 1 to 17
- New Redskins CB Cary Williams: The good, bad and ugly
- Why 4.5 is the most significant number for the Redskins to beat the Packers
- Packers' offense is searching for solutions
- Redskins overcome injury adversity to make playoffs
- Redskins 2015 regular season superlatives