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It's getting tough for Redskins QB Cousins to meet high expectations

It's getting tough for Redskins QB Cousins to meet high expectations

It’s clear the expectations for Kirk Cousins are getting higher.

On Sunday it wasn’t enough that the Redskins quarterback completed 10 of his first 11 passes and capped the team’s first two possessions with touchdown passes to Jordan Reed.

And the 91-yard drive that ended up being the fifth fourth-quarter comeback win of his career didn’t seem to generate a lot of buzz.

RELATED: WHAT WE LEARNED FROM REDSKINS 31, BROWNS 20

Instead, the focus seemed to be more on the second and third quarters, when Cousins and the offense went into hibernation and were outscored 20-3 by the Browns. The stretch started with a head-scratching interception that Cousins threw in the second quarter on the first play of the Redskins’ third possession.

“The defense back made a very good play, he’s a zoning defender in that curl flat area and he sunk off and made the play,” said Cousins when asked about the play. “If you go back and see the film you can see as a result, that Matt Jones as a result of him sinking, Matt Jones was open in the flat and so that’s in hindsight where the ball would have been able to go and probably get a productive gain and so that slipped out and I’ll take from that.”

That’s kind of a complex explanation for what appeared to be a late, forced throw when nobody was open.

In any case, the pick was returned to the Washington 12 and the Browns had a very short field to the tying touchdown.

Starting with the interception and going until the Redskins recovered a Browns fumble with just over a minute left in the third quarter the offense was not very productive. Cousins completed six of nine passes for 40 yards with no touchdowns and the one interception. That’s a passer rating of 36.6.

To be sure, the Redskins defense didn’t help much, allowing the Browns, led by a rookie quarterback, to possess the ball for 19:36 of the second and third quarters.

But Cousins and the Redskins weren’t taking advantage of the possessions they had, managing only a field goal drive in the latter stages of the second quarter.

This isn’t to say that Cousins had a bad game. His competed 77.7 percent of his passes and his pass rating was a very respectable 116.5. But his 183 yards passing was his lowest total in a game since he became the Redskins’ starter at the beginning of last season. There is the feeling that a true franchise quarterback would continue to pour it on against a team like the Browns.

Jay Gruden is often Cousins’ biggest fan, especially after wins, but his evaluation of his quarterback was lukewarm.

“I think he played OK. There’s a couple of situational-type things that we can’t do,” said Gruden. “We’ll coach him up. The more he plays, the more he’s going to do. The sack when we had the ball after the big run from Matt Jones, you’ve got to throw that away or can’t take a sack there. I think the interception, he’s just got to see coverage there and do a better job. But, he’s far from perfect.”

Cousins will have his “OK” but “far from perfect” games. As long as the Redskins win all will be well, but fans and media will attach style points to the QB's performance. 

RELATED: MUST-SEE PHOTOS FROM THE REDSKINS' WEEK 4 WIN

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The Kerrigans are having a baby and, WOW, this is all so very exciting

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@kerrigan91

The Kerrigans are having a baby and, WOW, this is all so very exciting

The Kerrigan family is about to make a big-time addition to its roster.

Ryan and his wife, Jessica, already have two very, VERY, very, very cute bulldogs in their household. 

But on Tuesday, the two announced in separate Instagram posts that Jessica is 18 weeks pregnant and that a third human Kerrigan will arrive in 2019.

"Can I eat dis sign aftur da picturr iz over?" George the bulldog said when reached for comment on the news.

"How did dey gett such a smawl jerzey for da baby alreddy?" Franklin the other bulldog added.

This is all very wonderful.

Come next March, the world is about to get a little precious-er.

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Adrian Peterson's impressive day vs. the Panthers wasn't exactly supposed to happen

Adrian Peterson's impressive day vs. the Panthers wasn't exactly supposed to happen

When you don't hear from someone you wanted to hear from, you typically follow up.

But on Sunday during the Redskins' 23-17 win over the Panthers, Jay Gruden actually didn't follow up with Adrian Peterson about a plan the two first discussed leading up to kickoff.

Everyone associated with burgundy and gold should be OK with that, however, after seeing how things played out.

During his weekly, exclusive interview with JP Finlay on the Redskins Talk podcast, Gruden explained how Peterson's injury situation almost prevented the running back from posting his crucial 17-carry, 97-yard stat line. 

"I talked to him before the game, had a sit-down with him," the head coach said. "I told him I was probably only gonna use him on short-yardage and goal line if that, you know? Because I want him to heal, we have a long season ahead of us." 

Heading into Week 6, Peterson was dealing with shoulder, ankle and knee issues. Plus, he's 33 years old at a position where that number is way more common on a player's jersey than in his bio under "age."

So, Gruden's concern made some sense, especially considering how necessary a productive Peterson has been to the 'Skins' success in 2018. Problem is, the two never connected again, so the coach's pitch count was never executed.

"He says, 'Oh, just let me go early, I'll let you know how I'm doing,'" Gruden recalled. "We let him go early and I never heard from him so I just kept him in there. He played great. He's a pro, he's a stud."

For those of you now wondering if this means you should start ignoring emails from your boss or not text your buddy back and still expect success, let's not get too carried away here. In this instance, a lack of communication worked for the future Hall of Famer, but that doesn't mean it's going to work for you.

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