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Redskins leaning on last year’s streak for hope

Washington Redskins v Minnesota Vikings

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - NOVEMBER 7: Mike Shanahan of the Washington Redskins looks on during the final minute of the game against the Minnesota Vikings on November 7, 2013 at Mall of America Field at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Vikings defeated the Redskins 34-27. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)

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When the Giants talk about being firmly in the race (and everyone in the NFC East is), it seems more reasonable.

But the Redskins, owners of an identical 3-6 record, are leaning on their own recent history as they try to cling to hope for the rest of the year, a game and a half out of the division lead.

They had the same record at this point last year, when coach Mike Shanahan started “evaluating” players for the future and ripped off seven straight wins.

We know we’re capable of it because we’ve done it before,” linebacker Ryan Kerrigan said, via Mark Maske of the Washington Post. “But at the same time, . . . every week at this point in the season is a one-week season. You’ve got to treat it like that.”

Of course, the road is much tougher this year. With four division games to go, they also have to face the Chiefs and 49ers (along with a less-daunting trip to play the Falcons).

But the the six teams they play (the Giants are up twice) have a .536 winning percentage, while last year they finished against teams who were .478 at the time and .450 by the end of the season.

“Obviously to have an opportunity to still be in the conversation as far as the division is concerned is a bonus,” defensive lineman Kedric Golston said. “But at the end of the day, we’ve got to take care of our own business and start winning football games around here and stop relying on other people’s failures.”

Of course, the Redskins have plenty of self-inflicted wounds. Other than the specific awfulness of their special teams, the problems have been more diverse this year, without being able to pin the reasons for 3-6 on one side of the ball.