Redskins Meandering Season of Uncertainty… Meanders On

On the whole, this was hardly a bad loss. To lose to a solid Minnesota Vikings team 38-30, where you once again left points on the board due to “easy 7’s” becoming “stupid 3’s” it’s again more frustrating than depressing.

Not that anyone’s gonna hang a banner… but we did put up more on Minnesota than anybody has so far this year.

Not to make excuses, but Minnesota was coming off a bye, while we were in a stone-cold letdown spot after the stunning win in Seattle.

Not to play the “what-if” game, but can we just have Kirk’s backbreaker INT “taken off our bill” at the end of the first half, and can we just have Josh Doctson not trip over his own shoes at the goal-line?

I know. Excuses, excuses. Win the damn game. I’ll shut up now.

There were plenty of reasons why the Redskins were not good enough on Sunday. The d-line was dominated all day, barely getting a sniff of Case Keenum, while getting gashed repeatedly by the Vikes ground attack.

The secondary was lit afire with Stephon Diggs and Adam Thielen making like Jerry Rice and John Taylor in their prime.

The coach panicked by going for it on 4th and 6 way too early in the game, while calling two dud plays on 3rd and 4th and 1 later on.

We still have zero run game.

And the tough schedule keeps coming, with a date this Sunday against the NFL’s fast strengthening Cat-3 team the Saints. All they did was rush for nearly 300 yards and 4 TDs on the road vs. Buffalo. These dome daisies went outdoors in cold weather, and punished a quality opponent with defense and running.

So here we are Redskins fans, lumped into the “in the mix” category on the network post-game show “Playoff Picture” graphics. By most guesstimates, it’s gonna take 10 wins this year. And that means a 6-1 finish.

I count 5-2 as best-case scenario. Which won’t be good enough. Which will lead to a very unsatisfying and uncomfortable off-season yet again.

We’ll ask ourselves: “What are we doing, and where are we going?” When the answers are: “I’m not sure, and probably nowhere” it can lead to chronic apathy. It was shocking, but yet not surprising, how many Viking fans invaded the lower bowl of FedEx Field on Sunday. This happens alot to us “at home” these days.

It’s easy to dismiss the Cowboys (America’s team, the fact the Skins were the last team to integrate) and the Eagles (it’s a short drive, they love to drink in our parking lot and start fights) the Giants (lot of lawyers and money men who split offices in NYC and DC) or the Steelers (they have a national fan base, you know) or the Packers (same)… and down the list.

At this point, there doesn’t seem to be any fanbase from any far flung NFL city that can’t put a big dent of color into our best seating areas at home games.

Humans crave narratives in life. Larger “story arcs” that give a framework to an unknowable future. The Redskins are not giving the fans a narrative that they can see, or buy into, to gut out these uneven times.

At least when a team starts over and drafts a QB with it’s first overall pick, you have a framework for the future laid out for you. We’re gonna struggle this year, but that’s fine. Let’s see what the new kid can do. Next year we’ll add another high pick, and maybe some free agents. We might be in the mix for the playoffs. And hopefully by year 3, we’ll be a legit contender with all of the pieces in place.

The current Redskins organization – far more competent, and far more professional than previous incarnations under Dan Snyder’s ownership – has everybody stuck in a wait-and-see mode because of the Kirk Cousins drama.

Every loss that’s even close, gets boiled down to the question of: “If we had a slightly better quarterback…. would we have won that game?”

It’s a normal thing for fans and media to do, even though it’s utterly silly. If, if… if…. there’s a million “if’s” that turn the outcome of a typical NFL game each week. By always looking at the QB, it’s akin to the old saying “When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.”

Until the Redskins plant their foot firmly in the ground and make their move on Kirk Cousins, we’ll all feel vaguely lost and wandering with this team, unless they are winning big, and winning a lot.

About the Author

Steve Czaban is a 25 year sports radio veteran, who hosts an afternoon drive show in Washington D.C. He also appears on "Bob and Brian" in Milwaukee. "Czabe" also writes and edits his own commentaries for www.czabe.com and other on-line and print publications. He can be reached at czabe@yahoo.com.

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3 Comments

  1. Didn’t know that…30 was the most against the Vikings this year? It coulda been 44. Of course, it felt like they could’ve put up 55 on us if they needed to. And now the Saints are in full saint mode? Oh boy, what a stretch taking on the NFC’s divisional championship round.

    I don’t understand DC’s sportsworld personnel decisions. Anyone watch the world series thinking, “we could’ve had Verlander here and gotten rid of one of Gio or the other Tanner?” Are we so in love with anyone on Offense not named Chris Thompson to have not picked up Jay Ajayi or any other WR that can actually use those ten pointy things at the end of their arms to hold on to a pass?

    The Saints aren’t magic though. We just need to score more than them at the end of the day.

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