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Need to Know: A light workload for Redskins' offense vs. Eagles

Need to Know: A light workload for Redskins' offense vs. Eagles

Here is what you need to know on this Tuesday, December 13, six days before the Washington Redskins host the Carolina Panthers.

Timeline

Today's schedule: No media availability

Days until: Panthers @ Redskins 6; Redskins @ Bears Christmas Eve 11; Giants @ Redskins, New Year’s Day 19

Injuries of note:
LB Compton (PCL sprain), LB Cravens (muscle flexor), RB Brown (concussion)
Latest injury report

Last look at Redskins vs Eagles

A good (not great) quality win—I’m getting a laugh out of fans who think that a five-point road win in the division is somehow inadequate. The Redskins were favored by just a point and the people who set those lines don’t draw them out of a hat. Washington is better, but not by that much. It’s not a huge win over another playoff contender but it shouldn’t be taken for granted, either. The Redskins aren’t good enough for that yet.

Working part time: The Redskins ran just 48 offensive plays against the Eagles. According to Pro Football Focus that is the fewest snaps they have had in a game since at least 2006 (that’s as far back as their records go). For perspective, the NFL average this year is about 64 snaps per team per game. Considering that, it is somewhat remarkable that they managed 334 yards of offense and scored four touchdowns. Kirk Cousins was the model of efficiency with just 14 pass completions good for 234 yards (16.7 yards/completion) I’m not sure if it’s a formula for success that they can replicate but every once in a while it comes in handy.

The Everett hit: Deshazor Everett will almost certainly get fined for his hit on Darrel Sproles. I doubt that a suspension will be coming. To paraphrase my friend @BurgundyBlog from Twitter, it certainly was a reckless play by Everett. He was out of control. But it was flat out stupid of Sproles not to call for a fair catch. The Eagles fans and media who want Everett to be banned or put in jail need to get a grip.

Should Thompson have taken a knee? Fans could have been spared a ton of anxiety if Chris Thompson had taken a knee somewhere inside the five-yard line instead of scoring on his 25-yard run just after the two-minute warning. The Redskins could have run down the clock (the Eagles had just one timeout left) and taken a field goal attempt as time expired. But there was too much risk involved. Thompson mentioned to me Dustin Hopkins’ short miss against the Bengals in London. And other stuff, anything from a fumbled quarterback exchange to a bad snap on the field goal try, could go wrong, too. It was better for Thompson to finish the play and make the Eagles get a touchdown for the win. The fact that they nearly did doesn’t make scoring the TD a bad idea.

Hodgepodge: Jordan Reed played just 10 snaps. It was good for the Redskins to be able to win essentially without him . . . The Eagles put the ball on the ground two other times before Wentz’s final fumble in the last minute. This is what I wrote last week about how they are not recovering fumbles at the same rate they were last year . . . The most underrated offensive play of the game for the Redskins was the 33-yard pass from Cousins to Crowder that got the game-winning drive jump-started. Nice touch on the thrown a difficult catch executed by Crowder, and a good decision to challenge by Gruden. If the incomplete ruling had stood, the Redskins would have been facing third and 10 at their own 23 and who knows what would have happened after that.

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NFC East Update: Division race tightens as Redskins stumble, Cowboys surge

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USA Today Sports

NFC East Update: Division race tightens as Redskins stumble, Cowboys surge

When the sun came up Sunday morning, the Redskins held a two-game lead in the NFC East and looked to have a clear route to a division title. 

By the time the sun went down, a lot changed. 

Washington lost at home in a crazy game to Houston, but big picture, the more important outcome was the broken leg for Alex Smith. The Redskins now turn to backup Colt McCoy, and while the Burgundy and Gold remain in first place, their lead shrunk.

  1. Washington Redskins (6-4, 2-0) - Talk about a roller coaster game. The Redskins got down early to the Texans, trailing 10-0 in the first quarter, but fought all the way back. In the process, the team lost Smith for the season, but McCoy played well when he entered the game. A veteran in Jay Gruden's system, McCoy should be able to step in and run the offense without any hesitation. Will that be enough? What isn't being talked about in Washington: a suddenly slumping run defense. A huge game looms Thursday against Ezekiel Elliott and a surging Cowboys squad. Up next: Nov. 22 @ Dallas, 4 p.m.
  2. Dallas Cowboys (5-5, 2-1) - It seemed like the Cowboys season was over a few weeks ago after a humbling home loss on Monday Night Football to the Titans. Two weeks later, the script has flipped. Dallas won their second straight game on Sunday, holding off a late Atlanta rally and winning the game on a last-second field goal. Elliott went for 201 total yards from scrimmage and the Cowboys young defense continued to make impressive plays. Jerry Jones' team struggles on the road, but at home, the Cowboys are 3-1 this season. Up next: Nov. 22 vs Washington, 4 p.m.
  3. Philadelphia Eagles (4-6, 1-1) - Fans waiting for the defending Super Bowl champion Eagles to get it together might want to stop waiting. Philly got boat raced in New Orleans on Sunday, losing 48-7 and dropping to two games below .500. Carson Wentz threw three INTs in New Orleans and really, while the QB was bad in the Superdome, it's hard to pin the Eagles' woes on any one thing. The offense hasn't been very good, and the defense hasn't either. Sitting just two games back of the 'Skins and one behind Dallas, don't count the Eagles out yet. But don't really count them in either. Up next: Nov. 25th vs New York Giants, 1 p.m.
  4. New York Giants (3-7, 0-3) - Don't look now but the Giants might be the hottest team in the division. Or at least not the coldest team in the division. The Giants won their second game in a row on Sunday, a nail-biting 38-35 victory over Tampa. New York got out to a big lead before the Bucs crept back in it, but powered by four combined TDs between Saquon Barkley and Eli Manning, the Giants did enough. Simple arithmetic suggests the Giants are closer to a Top 5 draft pick than a playoff run, but hey, they haven't been eliminated yet. Crazy things happen in this league. Up next: Nov. 25th @ Philadelphia, 1 p.m.

 

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Don't expect Redskins to call Colin Kaepernick, per report

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USA Today Sports

Don't expect Redskins to call Colin Kaepernick, per report

After losing Alex Smith for the rest of the season with a broken leg, Colt McCoy will take over as the Redskins starting quarterback. 

In turn, that means the Redskins need a new backup quarterback. Washington does not have another passer on the roster or the practice squad, and with the trade deadline already passed, the 'Skins have to turn to available free agents or other practice squad players. 

There are a number of candidates available for the job, and a few names the Redskins are bringing in for workouts on Monday. 

One name that won't get called: former 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick. 

From Mike Florio:

Another source tells PFT that team president Bruce Allen previously has made clear within the organization his position that Kaepernick won’t be signed by Washington, ever.

Florio explained that the Redskins have not reached out to Kaepernick and will not be reaching out. 

Certainly a capable passer, Kaepernick guided the 49ers to the 2012 Super Bowl and has a career 60 percent completion rate with 72 TDs against 30 INTs in 58 career starts. 

There is more to the situation, obviously. As a political activist, Kaepernick works to bring light to racial inequality and law enforcement issues across the country, and he famously began to kneel while the national anthem was played before NFL games. He hasn't played in the NFL since 2016. 

Kaepernick has filed a lawsuit against the NFL, alleging that the league is colluding against him playing due to his activism.

There are some ties to Kaepernick with the Redskins. 

To start, Kaepernick played with Smith in San Francisco, before replacing him as the starting QB in 2012. Additionally, Redskins QB coach Kevin O'Connell worked on that Niners staff. 

Regardless, per the report, don't expect Kaepernick to get considered in Washington.

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