The Washington Redskins enter Week 6 with even more questions than they did the week prior.
Following their blowout loss to the New Orleans Saints, they are set to play another NFC South opponent, the Carolina Panthers.
Here is where the Redskins stand in Week 6 of the 2018 NFL season.
Top three storylines:
Shaking it off
The Redskins have a short week to shake off their bad loss to the Saints and move on to the Panthers. This loss came with some extra baggage like Josh Norman getting benched, ripped on Twitter by an opposing player, and getting called out by a former teammate. The problems went far beyond Norman; there was plenty of blame to go around. But the schedule doesn’t call for another bye week and they need to adjust quickly to get ready for Cam Newton and company.
Uneasy about injuries
Jay Gruden said that Josh Doctson was close to being healthy enough to play against the Saints, but he held him out. Maurice Harris started in his place and was target eight times (career high) and made three receptions (tied for career high) for 47 yards (career high). Even though Doctson has not been productive this season (5 rec., 48 yds.) his return will bolster depth and give them flexibility. At running back, the word is that Adrian Peterson (shoulder) and Chris Thompson (ribs) will be able to play on Sunday but you have to wonder about depth at that position.
About the only good news from Week 5 was that the three other teams in the NFC East also lost so the Redskins remain in first place at 2-2. The Cowboys and Eagles both sit at 2-3 while the Giants bring up the rear of the division at 1-4. Like the Redskins, the other three teams have plenty of issues. It seems that if the Redskins can hang around the .500 mark for most of the season they will be able to stay in playoff contention.
Record: 2-2, 1st in NFC East
vs. NFC East: 0-0
vs. NFC: 2-1
vs. AFC: 0-1
Weighted DVOA (Football Outsiders): -9.0% (22nd, down from 9thlast week)
Playoff chances per FO: 44.4% (-11.6%)
Trending in the right direction: After that Saints game, nothing at all. It’s one of those weeks to get back to work and try to get things moving toward the positive.
Trending in the wrong direction: The defensive yardage stats took a big hit after Drew Brees’ big night. Going into the game they had given up just 278 yards per game. Coming out the after ballooned up to 320
Next three games
October 14 vs. Panthers (3-1) — The Redskins haven’t won a game against the Panthers with Cam Newton at quarterback. In fact, they haven’t beaten them with anyone at QB since 2006. Newton is playing as well as he ever has and the decision to let second-year running back Christian McCaffrey run the ball more often has made the Carolina offense a force to be reckoned with.
October 21 vs. Cowboys (2-2) — The Cowboys are having their share of struggles this year, ranking 30th in the passing yards per game with Dak Prescott sitting 30th in adjusted net yards per pass attempt. But Zeke Elliott is leading the league in rushing and he has an average of 110 yards per game in three contests against the Redskins. This is Washington’s first division game of the year.
October 28 @ Giants (1-4) — Odell Beckham Jr., Saquon Barkley, and Eli Manning all are putting up some good numbers, but it hasn’t added up to much as the Giants have just one win and that’s over the Texans, who were winless going into the game.
MORE REDSKINS NEWS:
- J-No-More? Will Josh Norman return in 2019?
- Wrong Side of History: Redskins have lost 5 straight to Carolina
- Playing Through: Peterson battling shoulder injury
- First Look: Redskins vs. Panthers
Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page, Facebook.com/TandlerNBCS and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS and on Instagram @RichTandler.