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Three things not being talked about enough from the Redskins' first four games

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Three things not being talked about enough from the Redskins' first four games

After the Redskins' first three games of the 2017 season, a post was published to look at developments and players from each of those contests that were being passed over for other storylines (and those posts are here, here and here, in case you need some proof).

The words below are devoted to performing a similar exercise, but instead of looking just at Week 4's mostly-but-not-totally-fun loss in Kansas City, the entire opening quarter of Washington's year will be the focus.

There's been plenty of chatter about Josh Doctson and Jim Tomsula's magical touch with the defensive line so far. But here are three things not being talked about enough four weeks into the Redskins' journey.

MORE: NFL POWER RANKINGS, UPDATED AFTER WEEK 4

1) Ryan Kerrigan continues to be one of the NFL's steadiest defenders

This angle likely isn't getting enough run because of additions like Zach Brown and DJ Swearinger and the impact they've brought, the incredible growth of Matt Ioannidis and the sheer size of Greg Manusky's biceps, along with all the other things going on on the defensive side of the ball.

But the truth is that Ryan Kerrigan is, like always, producing, and the production is, like always, not being appreciated enough.

Through four weeks, No. 91's posted 2.5 sacks, recorded a pick-6 and forced a fumble. That sack number should be bigger, too (one play against the Chiefs stands out) and you'd be smart to bet that he'll finish with more than the 10 he's on pace for right now.

Kerrigan will never bring attention onto himself. That doesn't mean you can't give it to him on your own, though.

2) The red zone is again looking like the dread zone

This point tends to slip through when the Redskins are playing well, but it doesn't when they're slumping. But don't allow the very positive vibes around the Burgundy and Gold distract you from the fact that they still have the red zone blues.

Last season, the 'Skins were 30th in the league when it came to scoring TDs once they breached the 20-yard line. They are again in that slot through 2017's opening four weeks, and their percentage (36.3 percent) is actually worse than 2016's (45.9).

The assumption was that they'd at least return to an average level of performance in the red zone after being horrible in their 8-7-1 campaign. Unfortunately, up to this point, they've just returned to horrible.

RELATED: WHY JOSH DOCTSON NEEDS MORE SNAPS, AND NOW

3) The otherwordly pain tolerance and fortitude that Trent Williams has 

If Trent Williams had a regular job, the man would never take a sick day or cut out early.

In his squad's opener vs. Philadelphia, Williams was forced to leave due to an ankle injury. He quickly returned. And in his squad's showdown vs. K.C., Williams was forced to leave with a knee injury. He quickly returned.

"It's painful right now," the tackle told NBC Sports Washington's JP Finlay after the Chiefs game. "All that adrenaline is starting to wear off and [I'm] starting to feel exactly how painful it is. But it's worth it, man. I wanted to be there for my team. If I gotta fight through some stuff and have a very trying morning in the next few days, it's worth it."

All NFL players have a high pain tolerance. Offensive linemen, however, carry an even higher threshold. Yet Williams may be in a class of his own. And it's a class where missing more than a few snaps is truly unacceptable, apparently.

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After suffering from concussions, Su'a Cravens cleared for football

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USA Today Sports

After suffering from concussions, Su'a Cravens cleared for football

Stopped before it ever started, 2017 proved a disappointing season for the Redskins and Su'a Cravens. 

Selected in the second round of the 2016 NFL Draft, Cravens played his rookie year at linebacker before a position switch to safety in his second season. A more natural position fit, expectations were high for Cravens in 2017. 

Things derailed when Cravens suffered an injury in training camp. From there, the young player landed on the inactive list for the regular season opener. Questions began to bubble up about his role with the organization, and things popped Week 2 in Los Angeles. Cravens was seen speaking with Redskins VP Doug Williams on the sideline of a USC college football game, and a few days later, landed on the reserve/left squad list, effectively ending his year.

On Tuesday, Cravens' agent Fadde Mikhail released the following statement:

Cravens began working with Collins in September, soon after the Redskins moved him to the reserve list, per a source. Cravens suffered a concussion his rookie year that caused him to miss multiple games.

The statement brings plenty of questions, as the team did not previously disclose that Cravens dealt with head injuries in 2017. His training camp injury was a meniscus tear. 

Between placing the second-year star out of USC on the reserve/injured list and now this statement, it seems hard that the Redskins will be able to reconcile with Cravens to get him back on the team in 2018. 

Want more Redskins? Click here to follow JP on Facebook and check out @JPFinlayNBCS for live updates via Twitter! Click here for the #RedskinsTalk on Apple Podcastshere for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!

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If Redskins really are still evaluating Kirk Cousins, Sunday was a bad performance

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If Redskins really are still evaluating Kirk Cousins, Sunday was a bad performance

If the Redskins truly need to evaluate Kirk Cousins over the final half of the 2017 season, the quarterback did himself no favors on Sunday. 

Cousins played his worst game of the year against the Chargers, and it's not even close. Nobody played well for the Redskins, save for maybe punter Tress Way, but Cousins performed particularly poor against his baseline for the season. 

He delivered his lowest yardage total (151 pass yards), completion percentage (55 percent) and QB rating (68) of the year, and by a wide margin. Cousins missed throws high and long, and again seemed to struggle to hold onto the ball while getting hit. 

The good news for Cousins, however, is since being named starter in 2015, there haven't been many performances like this. Generally, Cousins is never this bad, and maybe that's why the performance in L.A. stands out so much. 

RELATED: HOW HOT ARE SEATS GETTING AT REDSKINS PARK?

"I’m not here to throw stones at anybody on the offense, I know from what we expect offensively, it wasn’t even close to what we want or what we should look like from an efficiency standpoint," Washington head coach Jay Gruden said on Monday. 

At this point, the evolving contract situation between the Redskins and Cousins clouds everything going on with the team. In just three more games, Cousins will again be a free agent, and team president Bruce Allen will need to decide if the team will use a transition tag, a franchise tag, get a long-term deal done or let their quarterback walk. 

The tags carry a tremendous salary cap hit, though a long-term deal will probably do the same. Letting Cousins walk carries a possible severe penalty, but not on the salary cap. 

Over the past 10 days, national analysts have begun to question Cousins' leadership skills, and Dan Patrick even suggested Redskins' receivers don't like Cousins as their quarterback. The assertion came that Cousins throws too many dangerous passes for his wideouts, causing big hits. 

Whether or not that assertion is true, Cousins did throw multiple high passes over the middle against the Chargers. Those are the exact passes that cause big hits on receivers. 

REALTED: WEEK 14 NFL POWER RANKINGS 

It's worth pointing out, almost every QB does that to some degree. For his part, Cousins said that certainly it was not intentional.

"I’m sure I’ve led people into traffic. I know I led Pierre Garcon into some big hits in the past, but I think it also is a part of playing the receiver position and it’s tough," Cousins said on 106.7 the Fan on Monday.

Asked specifically about the high passes, Gruden only talked about inaccuracy. 

"He was not quite as accurate as he has been, obviously," the coach said. "He missed some throws that he normally makes. He threw behind a couple of guys on some deep balls and he threw a couple over some guys’ heads from time to time."

It's hard to think one game could sway the opinions of the Redskins front office about their quarterback. If one game could, however, it could have been Cousins' performance against the Chargers.

Want more Redskins? Click here to follow JP on Facebook and check out @JPFinlayNBCS for live updates via Twitter! Click here for the #RedskinsTalk on Apple Podcastshere for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!