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Need to Know: The Redskins’ path to 10 wins

Need to Know: The Redskins’ path to 10 wins

Here is what you need to know on Saturday, September 29, nine days before the Washington Redskins visit the New Orleans Saints.  

Talking points

Back in February, a week after the Eagles won the Super Bowl, I said that 10 wins is a reasonable expectation for the 2018 Redskins.  They have banked two wins in their first three games. Can they get to 10? I don’t know if they will but here is a path for them to get there. 

Split with the Eagles—If you want to be the best you have to beat the best. The Eagles swept the Redskins on their way to their championship last year. Prior to that, the Redskins had beaten the Eagles five straight times. No need to get greedy here, a split with Philly will suffice. 

Win three of four against the Giants and Cowboys—At least one win against the Cowboys is needed simply for the Redskins to show that they can do it. They haven’t beaten Dallas in a meaningful game since 2014 or in any game since Dak Prescott and Zeke Elliott came to Big D. The Giants appear to be headed towards another high draft pick, but it’s early. 

Win two of four against the NFC South—The games against the Panthers and Falcons are at home so winning at least one of those is important. The Redskins will be decided underdogs in New Orleans in their next game, but I’m not going to look at the Saints defense, which has not been good, and say that the Redskins have no chance. Will there still be any magic in Tampa Bay when the Redskins go there in mid-November?

Beat the Texans at home—Houston is one of three 0-3 teams in the NFL, but it will be surprising if they remain among the league’s worst teams when they come to Washington in November. Regardless, it will be a home game against an opponent that is on their level and the Redskins need to take the win. 

Split December road games in Jacksonville and Tennessee—Unless they can claim an additional win in the division or against the NFC South, the Redskins will need to go on the road in December against the AFC South to get to double-digit wins. The Jaguars went from looking like one of the best teams in the league against the Patriots to putting up only nine points against the Titans. It’s hard to figure how either team will look in December, but it’s likely that one or both of those games will be critical for the Redskins. 

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The agenda

Today: Bye week

Upcoming: Redskins @ Saints (October 8) 9 days; Panthers @ Redskins 15; Cowboys @ Redskins 22

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Report: President Trump told pro sports commissioners he believes NFL season should start on time

Report: President Trump told pro sports commissioners he believes NFL season should start on time

During a conference call with 13 professional sports commissioners Saturday, U.S. President Donald Trump said that he believes the 2020 NFL season should start as scheduled in September despite the ongoing coronavirus outbreak, according to a report by ESPN’s Adam Schefter and Adrian Wojnarowski.

Trump also reportedly remarked that he would like to allow fans back into stadiums and arenas by August or September.

The president used the call as an opportunity to commend the commissioners for their response to the pandemic. On March 11, the NBA became the first American professional sports league to suspend play in an effort to stop the spread of the virus. The NHL, which was less than a month out from the start of the playoffs, followed suit—as eventually did the MLS, ATP, WTA, PGA Tour, NASCAR and MLB spring training.

With the NFL still in the midst of its offseason, there remains hope that the 2020 season will begin on time. So far, the league has canceled its annual league meaning and delayed OTAs. The draft will be held as expected while teams make their selections remotely rather than in Las Vegas as originally planned. While many free-agent deals have yet to be finalized due to the inability for teams to conduct physicals, the NFL has yet to be affected as much as other major sports.

The season is set to begin Thursday, Sept. 10 with opening Sunday coming Sept. 13.

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President Trump commends sports commissioners, reportedly says NFL should start on time

President Trump commends sports commissioners, reportedly says NFL should start on time

The White House says President Donald Trump spoke with commissioners of the country's sports leagues on Saturday and told them he recognizes "the good work being done by many teams and players" to care for their communities and fans dealing with the new coronavirus.

After the conference call that included the president, two of his advisers and 13 sports commissioners ended, ESPN reported that Trump "believes the NFL season should start on time in September."

The virus has decimated the sports world with the NBA and NHL suspending their seasons indefinitely and MLB postponing the start of its season.

The NCAA basketball tournament was also canceled, as were college spring sports such as baseball and softball, lacrosse and track and field. No representatives of the NCAA were reported to be in the call.

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The White House says the commissioners thanked Trump for his "national leadership and for his interest in the sports industry." He called on them to continue efforts to support their fellow Americans during the current challenge.

A wide range of sports league officials participated in the call, including NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and NBA commissioner Adam Silver.

NBC Sports Washington's Matt Weyrich contributed to this report.

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