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Redskins vs. Giants: Highs and lows from Week 14

Redskins vs. Giants: Highs and lows from Week 14

FEDEX FIELD -- The Mark Sanchez era as the starting quarterback for the Washington Redskins has begun. Fine, maybe it’s not an era, but a stretch of games that may only last four regular season games (assuming he avoids the injury curse). If the Redskins, 6-6 entering Sunday, plan on pushing their way into the postseason, they cannot afford to lose a home game.

Well, the Sanchez era did not lost long. In his first start since 2015, Sanchez was benched in the third quarter for Josh Johnson, who was signed by the Redskins just four days ago. It did not matter who was playing quarterback, as Washington fell in a lopsided affair, 40-16.

Here are the highs and lows from the game...

Giants at Redskins: Highs and Lows

FIRST QUARTER:

HIGHS: Tress Way averaged 48.0 yards on three punts, all of which resulted in the Giants started at or inside their 25-yard line. Yes, it was that kind of offensive quarter where the punter deserves a spotlight acknowledgment. This might be the game, should the Redskins win, where Way locks down Washington’s Player of the Year honors.

Defensively, the Redskins shutout out New York’s Beckham-less offense during the opening 15 minutes. Washington held dynamic rookie runner Saquon Barkley to six yards on three carries. Daron Payne sacked Eli  Manning on a 3rd-and-3 play. As long as the Redskins’ offense doesn’t give away the ball, this looks like a defensive struggle (Hold that thought).

Not sure if this is a high, low or just an interesting note, but the Redskins started rookie Shaun Dion Hamilton at inside linebacker next to Mason Foster. Zach Brown missed some work this week with an illness. Remember that beyond all the social aspects of the Reuben Foster signing, Washington claimed a young ILB off waivers despite all the potential heat. That move signals the Redskins are looking for more at the position at least long-term.

LOWS: Immediately after the Payne sack, New York punter Riley Dixon pinned Washington at its own two-yard line. After Adrian Peterson lost a yard on first down, Sanchez dropped back to pass on second down with 2:52 remaining in the period. Gulp. The pass was tipped at the line of scrimmage and intercepted by safety Curtis Riley, who returned it nine yards for a defensive touchdown.

It’s certainly possible that score is more than Washington’s offense can overcome. The Redskins dropped one, maybe two of Sanchez’s throws, and committed five penalties in the first quarter. They need a clean performance from the other 10 players on the field considering Sanchez’s limitations.

Injury note: Jordan Reed went to the locker room with an ankle injury. He's "questionable" to return. We’ll leave it at that for now.

SECOND QUARTER:

HIGHS: Way continued his strong outing with three more long punts, two of which pinned the Giants inside the 25. That’s 49.4 yards on seven kicks. Nice, but let’s move on.

LOWS: So much for slowing down Barkley. He wowed with a thrilling 78-yard touchdown run, breaking an inside run to open space down the left side after a block on Foster created a huge lane. Barkley wasn’t done. He finished the half with 159 yards on 10 carries.

Also not done, New York’s offensive onslaught. Manning threw a three-yard TD pass to Sterling Shepard after Sanchez’s second interception of the half, and then tossed a six-yarder to Bennie Fowler.

Aldrick Rosas kicked a 23-yard field goal on the final play of the half for a 34-0 lead. True story.

There is ugly and there is that first half for the Redskins. New York outgained Washington 284 to 51. This wasn’t all on Sanchez, but he finished 5 of 13 for 0 yards with two interceptions. That’s a 7.1 QB-rating. Yikes. Wonder if we see a Josh Johnson sighting in the second half. No, I’m not joshing.

Injury update: Reed downgraded to “doubtful” with that foot injury. Sounds about right.

THIRD QUARTER:

HIGHS: More punter talk. Way bumped his average to 51.1 on eight punts. This is the “highs” section, options are limited and Way is killing it. Enough said.

So much for the aforementioned Sanchez era. It barely lasted a half of football. After another offensive drive of nothingness, the Redskins sat their new-ish QB midway through the third for a guy who was signed Wednesday. Yes, Josh Johnson took live snaps. What a world. However, he moved the ball thanks to a blend of mobility and completed passes (4 of 6 for 32 yards). But…

LOWS: …The quarter ended with Johnson stopped for one yard on a 4th-and-2 play from New York’s 22. So much for getting on the scoreboard. Based on that drive, Johnson is the clear Week 15 starter.

Speaking of scoring, Manning threw his third touchdown pass, an 11-yarder to Russell Shepard with 5:38 remaining in the quarter. Rosas missed the extra point, so New York only increased its lead to 40-0.

Injury update: Reed goes from “questionable” to “doubtful” to out with that foot injury.

FOURTH QUARTER:

HIGHS: Finally, some honest to goodness positive moments not involving Way, though he finished with an impressive 51.1 average on eight punts.

Josh Johnson did good work, for the most part. Sure, his touchdown run after a Mason Foster interception and 79-yard scoring play to Jamison Crowder along with a pair of two-point conversions came in garbage time. Yes, the Giants’ defense played soft with a massive lead. They also picked off a Johnson pass near their goal line with Washington threatening to score a third touchdown in the quarter.

With all those low bar qualifications, Johnson looked decent. Most of the throws were underneath, including a short dart that Crowder legged out for the longest TD of his career. Johnson finished 11 of 16 for 195 yards, one touchdown and one interception, along with 45 rushing yards and an 8-yard scoring run. Expect Johnson to start Sunday at Jacksonville.

LOWS: This entry is less about the final 15 minutes and more about the game. Washington’s losing streak reached four. This stunk more than the others did, yet was the most predictable considering the QB concerns. Maybe not trailing by 40 points, but the Redskins were a home underdog against a four-win team for a reason.

Neither Sanchez nor Johnson had anything to do with the defense getting gashed on the ground and through the air; Manning had three TD passes and Barkley finished with 197 yards from scrimmage. Call it a scheme issue, or blame effort, or whatever, but the defense collectively hasn’t looked sharp for a month. Maybe if they hold up in the second quarter and enter halftime only down 13-0 the offense finds a way to rally.

That’s just wishful thinking, at least with Sanchez at quarterback. Maybe there’s hope with Johnson going forward. Then again, he was slated to join to the San Diego Fleet of the Alliance of American Football before joining Washington. He’s unlikely the answer to anything more than the question of who was the Redskins’ fourth starting quarterback in 2018. At 6-7, it’s probably time to start focusing on who plays the position in 2019. Anyway, see you in Jacksonville.

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Jordan Reed ruled out for Monday night and could be 'weeks' away, per source

Jordan Reed ruled out for Monday night and could be 'weeks' away, per source

The Redskins ruled Jordan Reed out for Monday night's game against Chicago and the star tight end could be "weeks" away, a source told NBC Sports Washington. 

ESPN's Adam Schefter first reported that Reed would miss the Redskins game against the Bears on Monday, where Washington seeks to get their first win of the season. Reed hasn't played since he sustained a concussion in the third preseason game against the Falcons on August 22nd.

A huge part of head coach Jay Gruden's offense when healthy, Reed has dealt with injuries throughout his career. He has never played a complete 16-game season in seven years in Washington, and even more worrisome is the head injury situation. This marks his seventh documented concussion since he played college football at the University of Florida. 

Without Reed, the Redskins only have Jeremy Sprinkle and Vernon Davis at tight end. The team played with just two tight ends last week against the Cowboys, but that is unusual. 

Juggling injuries elsewhere with Quinton Dunbar, Colt McCoy and Cassanova McKinzy, at some point the Redskins might need to consider placing Reed on the injured reserve. 

Each time Gruden has been asked for an update on Reed, the head coach explains that as part of the NFL's concussion protocol there are no updates. The medical exams are handled by independent doctors, not the Redskins medical group. It's also worth noting that Reed is unable to speak with the media while in the NFL concussion protocol. 

There have been signs of optimism in spurts for Reed. 

He practiced each day prior to the opener against Philadelphia but was ruled out late in the week. In Week 2 against Dallas, he started the practice week but then missed Friday's session before being ruled out for the game.

In advance of the Bears game on Monday night, Reed was on the field on Wednesday but did not go again the rest of the week when the media was allowed to watch practice. 

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Fantasy Football WR Rankings 2019: Week 3

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Fantasy Football WR Rankings 2019: Week 3

Week 2 is in the books and rosters are beginning to take shape. Here are the top wide receivers for Week 3.

For a tiered breakdown of each fantasy football position, click below:

Quarterback Rankings: Week 3
Running Back Rankings: Week 3
Wide Receiver Rankings: Week 3
Tight End Rankings: Week 3

Flex Rankings: Week 3

TIER 1: MUST STARTS

1. Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons
Opponent: at Colts
2019 Stats: 11 Receptions, 137 Receiving YDS, 3 Receiving TD, 42.7 PTS, 2019 WR8
Previous Ranking: 3

2. DeAndre Hopkins, Houston Texans
Opponent: at Chargers
2019 Stats: 13 Receptions, 151 Receiving YDS, 2 Receiving TD, 40.1 PTS, 2019 WR15
Previous Ranking: 1

3. Keenan Allen, Los Angeles Chargers
Opponent: vs. Texans
2019 Stats: 16 Receptions, 221 Receiving YDS, 1 Receiving TD, 44.1 PTS, 2019 WR5
Previous Ranking: 5

4. Amari Cooper, Dallas Cowboys
Opponent: vs. Dolphins
2019 Stats: 10 Receptions, 150 Receiving YDS, 2 Receiving TD, 37 PTS, 2019 WR19
Previous Ranking: 11

5. Michael Thomas, New Orleans Saints
Opponent: at Seahawks
2019 Stats: 20 Receptions, 212 Receiving YDS, 41.2 PTS, 2019 WR10
Previous Ranking: 2

6. Odell Beckham Jr., Cleveland Browns
Opponent: vs. Rams
2019 Stats: 13 Receptions, 232 Receiving YDS, 1 Receiving TD, 42.2 PTS, 2019 WR9
Previous Ranking: 9

TIER 2: WR1's

7. Davante Adams, Green Bay Packers
Opponent: vs. Broncos
2019 Stats: 11 Receptions, 142 Receiving YDS, 25.2 PTS, 2019 WR39
Previous Ranking: 6

8. Kenny Golladay, Detroit Lions
Opponent: at Eagles
2019 Stats: 12 Receptions, 159 Receiving YDS, 2 Receiving TD, 39.9 PTS, 2019 WR16
Previous Ranking: 16

9. Mike Evans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Opponent: vs. Giants
2019 Stats: 6 Receptions, 89 Receiving YDS, 14.9 PTS, 2019 WR71
Previous Ranking: 7

10. JuJu Smith-Schuster, Pittsburgh Steelers
Opponent: at 49ers
2019 Stats: 11 Receptions, 162 Receiving YDS, 27.2 PTS, 2019 WR33
Previous Ranking: 10

11. T.Y. Hilton, Indianapolis Colts
Opponent: vs. Falcons
2019 Stats: 12 Receptions, 130 Receiving YDS, 3 Receiving TD, 43 PTS, 2019 WR7
Previous Ranking: 13

12. Sammy Watkins, Kansas City Chiefs
Opponent: vs. Ravens
2019 Stats: 15 Receptions, 247 Receiving YDS, 3 Receiving TD, 57.7 PTS, 2019 WR1
Previous Ranking: 8

13. Cooper Kupp, Los Angeles Rams
Opponent: at Browns
2019 Stats: 12 Receptions, 166 Receiving YDS, 29.2 PTS, 2019 WR29
Previous Ranking: 14

TIER 3: High-end WR2's

14. Chris Godwin, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Opponent: vs. Giants
2019 Stats: 11 Receptions, 174 Receiving YDS, 2 Receiving TD, 40.4 PTS, 2019 WR14
Previous Ranking: 22

15. Adam Thielen, Minnesota Vikings
Opponent: vs. Raiders
2019 Stats: 8 Receptions, 118 Receiving YDS, 1 Receiving TD, 25.8 PTS, 2019 WR35
Previous Ranking: 12

16. Tyler Lockett, Seattle Seahawks
Opponent: vs. Saints
2019 Stats: 11 Receptions, 123 Receiving YDS, 1 Receiving TD, 29.3 PTS, 2019 WR28
Previous Ranking: 20

17. Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona Cardinals
Opponent: vs. Panthers
2019 Stats: 13 Receptions, 217 Receiving YDS, 1 Receiving TD, 40.7 PTS, 2019 WR12
Previous Ranking: 18

18. Marquise Brown, Baltimore Ravens
Opponent: at Chiefs
2019 Stats: 12 Receptions, 233 Receiving YDS, 2 Receiving TD, 47.3 PTS, 2019 WR4
Previous Ranking: 28

19. Julian Edelman, New England Patriots
Opponent: vs. Jets
2019 Stats: 10 Receptions, 134 Receiving YDS, 25.6 PTS, 2019 WR36
Previous Ranking: 15

TIER 4: On the cusp

20. D.J. Moore, Carolina Panthers
Opponent: at Cardinals
2019 Stats: 16 Receptions, 165 Receiving YDS, 1 Fumble, 30.5 PTS, 2019 WR27
Previous Ranking: 21

21. Stefon Diggs, Minnesota Vikings
Opponent: vs. Raiders
2019 Stats: 3 Receptions, 86 Receiving YDS, 1 Receiving TD, 15.6 PTS, 2019 WR69
Previous Ranking: 24

22. Josh Gordon, New England Patriots 
Opponent: vs. Jets
2019 Stats: 5 Receptions, 92 Receiving YDS, 1 Receiving TD, 20.2 PTS, 2019 WR50
Previous Ranking: 17

23. Alshon Jeffery, Philadelphia Eagles
Opponent: vs. Lions
2019 Stats: 5 Receptions, 49 Receiving YDS, 1 Receiving TD, 1 Rushing TD, 22.1 PTS, 2019 WR44
Previous Ranking: 19

24. Robert Woods, Los Angeles Rams
Opponent: at Browns
2019 Stats: 10 Receptions, 103 Receiving YDS, 25 Rushing YDS, 22.8 PTS, 2019 WR42
Previous Ranking: 23

25. Tyrell Williams, Oakland Raiders
Opponent: at Vikings
2019 Stats: 11Receptions, 151 Receiving YDS, 2 Receiving TD, 38.1 PTS, 2019 WR18
Previous Ranking: 25

26. Calvin Ridley, Atlanta Falcons
Opponent: at Colts
Previous Ranking: 29

27. Emmanuel Sanders, Denver Broncos
Opponent: at Packers
Previous Ranking: NR

28. Tyler Boyd, Cincinnati Bengals
Opponent: at Bills
Previous Ranking: 27

29. Terry McLaurin, Washington Redskins
Opponent: vs. Bears
Previous Ranking: NR

30.  Jamison Crowder, New York Jets
Opponent: at Patriots
Previous Ranking: NR

For a tiered breakdown of each fantasy football position, click below:

Quarterback Rankings: Week 3
Running Back Rankings: Week 3
Wide Receiver Rankings: Week 3
Tight End Rankings: Week 3

Flex Rankings: Week 3