Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, November 19, three days before the Washington Redskins play the Carolina Panthers.
Five thoughts and observations from Redskins Park
—There is no reason to get all nervous about Matt Jones fumbling. Alfred Morris had four in his rookie year, three of them recovered by the other team, and nine in his first two seasons combined and nobody was screaming for him to get glued to the bench.
—I’m keeping my eye on the inside linebacker spot this week. Will Compton seems to have one of the spots locked down but not necessarily for every snap. Last week I thought that Perry Riley was only playing because Keenan Robinson was injured but he responded with his best game of the year, including an acrobatic interception. I wouldn’t be surprised to see all three of them rotate situationally through the game.
—I’m going to do a post on what Trent Williams said about Morgan Moses’ play in the next day or two but the second-year player is getting high praise from both players and coaches. “I think he’s playing at a level of right tackle as good as anybody in the National Football League,” said Jay Gruden said of Moses after the Saints game. When training camp started nobody figured he would play much of a role at all this year. It goes to show you how much and how quickly things can change in the NFL.
—Speaking of unanticipated contributors, Will Blackmon wasn’t even on the roster Week 1. His play has essentially pushed DeAngelo Hall, the Redskins starting cornerback since the middle of the 2008 season, to safety. It’s hard to think of what a disaster the secondary would have been with Hall and Chris Culliver missing significant time with injuries had they not found Blackmon.
—Gruden said that there were “a couple of little skirmishes out there” during practice on Wednesday. "We’re just competing, man, that’s it," said Blackmon. "Nothing crazy, just a lot of testosterone out there." Perhaps this has happened at this time of year before but I don’t recall it happening often. This is a good sign; you have to like the feistiness out there a week before Thanksgiving.
—Today’s schedule: Practice 11:35; Jay Gruden and Joe Barry news conferences and player availability after practice, approx. 1:30
—Days until: Redskins @ Panthers 3; Giants @ Redskins 10; Monday night Cowboys @ Redskins 18
In case you missed it
- Cousins on contract: 'My focus is on Carolina'
- Gruden praises performance of Redskins' defense vs. Saints
- Only one Redskin misses practice on Wednesday
- Redskins RB Silas Redd suspended by the NFL
- State of the Redskins, Week 11: Can revamped secondary contain Cam?
- Kirk Cousins named NFC Offensive Player of the Week
- Redskins continue remarkable improvement on 3rd down
- Monday's result says the Redskins have a chance vs. Panthers