Redskins

Quick Links

Five key observations from an at times impressive, at times rough preseason opener

Five key observations from an at times impressive, at times rough preseason opener

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — The Redskins fell to the Patriots 26-17 on Thursday night in Week 1 of the 2018 NFL preseason. 

Here are Rich Tandler's five key observations from the preseason opener.

1. Starting without starters.
Not a single starter took the field for the Redskins’ offense with one exception. Rob Kelley started at running back and either he or Derrius Guice, who played later in the game, will start the opener. Other than that it was Colt McCoy at quarterback, a backup offensive line and receivers and Jeremy Sprinkle at tight end. Still, the offense ran quite well, posting 259 yards and 17 points against a Patriots defense that had a smattering of starters in for most of the first quarter.

2. McCoy looked McGood.
Colt McCoy was very good, completing 13 of 18 passes for 189 yards and two touchdowns. That came to a passer rating of 143.1. We know that he’s good for a game or two if needed. He got off some nice passes. His first touchdown pass came when he fired one to Byron Marshall, who was matched up with a linebacker. The pass allowed Marshall to keep his stride and he rolled into the end zone. In the second quarter, he had excellent touch on a pass to Cam Sims. The ball floated over the outstretched arm of a safety and to Sims, who made some good moves to turn it into a 57-yard gain to the two.

3. A great glimpse of Guice.
Derrius Guice gained 19 yards on six carries, but his best run of the day, a 34-yard effort, was called back due to a penalty. Then at the end of the run he suffered a knee injury. It did not appear to be too serious but he will have an MRI on Friday. He was starting to get warmed up some when he went out. It’s too small a sample size and assuming the injury isn’t serious, the Redskins have to be anxious to see more of him.

4. Things got sloppy late.
The Redskins couldn’t get a drive going offensive because of penalties and on defense they were in the mode of “almost” making a play but not getting it done. Missed tackles were a common sight. Perhaps it was to be expected from third- and fourth-team players. But you didn’t see the Patriots committing as many sins of commission and omission as did the Redskins, and their players were just as inexperienced as were the Redskins’.

5. In conclusion: Not bad.
Overall, it was a decent preseason opener for Washington. With their top reserves were in the game, they moved the ball well and played some good defense (a smattering of defensive starters did play). Of course we wait out word on the injuries to Guice, Matt Ioannidis (knee), and WR Trey Quinn (stomach).

MORE REDSKINS NEWS:

Click here for the #RedskinsTalk on Apple Podcastshere for Google Play or press play below.

Quick Links

Redskins get Trent Williams, Ryan Kerrigan into Pro Bowl and another 5 to alternate team

kerrigan_williams_usat.jpg
USA Today Sports

Redskins get Trent Williams, Ryan Kerrigan into Pro Bowl and another 5 to alternate team

The Redskins landed two players on the Pro Bowl roster in left tackle Trent Williams and outside linebacker Ryan Kerrigan. This marks the seventh and fourth Pro Bowl honors for the players, respectively. 

Williams has been named to the past seven Pro Bowls, a remarkable feat, and joins Ken Houston as the only Washington players to make seven straight Pro Bowls. He trails only Charley Taylor (8) and Chris Hanburger (9) in total Pro Bowl selections.

After a two-sack performance last Sunday in Jacksonville moved him into second all-time on the Redskins sack list, Kerrigan got named to his fourth Pro Bowl and third straight selection. He has 11 sacks on the season, his third straight year with double-digit sacks. 

Beyond Kerrigan and Williams, five other Redskins players were named alternates to the Pro Bowl: D.J. Swearinger, Josh Norman, Jordan Reed, Tress Way, and Adrian Peterson. 

Many thought Swearinger or Way would make the Pro Bowl for the first time in their careers, but both players came up just short. Things look good for Swearinger to make it to Orlando, as Giants safety Landon Collins made the Pro Bowl squad but will miss the game with an injury. 

MORE REDSKINS NEWS

Quick Links

How Kirk Cousins' next two games will directly impact the Redskins' playoff chances

How Kirk Cousins' next two games will directly impact the Redskins' playoff chances

A week after it felt borderline irresponsible to talk about the Redskins' 2018 playoff chances, it now feels completely necessary. 

Sure, you can make a pretty easy argument that this team doesn't look like a postseason team. But the fact of the matter is they're in a position to possibly become one in a handful of days.

And who's going to have a lot of say in whether the 'Skins do advance beyond Week 17? Kirk Cousins, because DUH.

Thanks to Dallas' Week 15 loss, Washington isn't out of the division hunt yet. However, their far more likely path to the playoffs is via the wild card, a spot that Cousins and the Vikings currently occupy.

To take that spot, the 'Skins really need to win out (they could still take the sixth seed by finishing 8-8, but that would take a lot more help). That means, first and foremost, Josh Johnson has to lead the Burgundy and Gold to victories over the Titans and the Eagles, which would have them finish the year at 9-7.

If that happens, the Redskins will then only require one Minnesota loss in the next two weeks to steal the second wild card. The Vikings square off with the Lions and Bears to wrap up their schedule, with the former happening in Detroit and the latter taking place in Minneapolis. 

The Eagles are also a factor in all of this, but Jay Gruden's squad could make them less of one by beating them in the 2018 finale.

Earlier this season, when everything was going right for the Redskins, it looked like a January showdown between Cousins' former franchise and his current one could happen. Now, though, the two squads are vying for the same position. 

So, it's really simple, 'Skins supporters — root for your guys to win two more and root against Cousins as well. This time around, No. 8 coming up short down the stretch would really benefit Washington.

MORE REDSKINS NEWS