Never take for granted a football team that knows how to beat the teams they rightly OUGHT to beat.
The 2016 Washington Redskins feel like they can do that. It isn’t always pretty. And sometimes it ends in a tie. But they aren’t beating themselves this season. And I can live with that.
Sure, they are still living “within the margins” of Goodell’s perpetual 8-8 matrix universe. Every win, has been a “one-play” type of win. Except the Browns win – a whopping 11-pointer, which featured some tremendous luck from the refs and typical Browns incompetence – they are all 7-points or less.
Everybody since week 3 has had the ball against us in the waning minute with a chance to win. Eli got picked. Wentz, Dalton and Bradford got sacked. The Ravens had ONE foot barely out of bounds.
We should be the talk of the NFC along with Dallas. They are 8-1 and on an 8-game heater, we should be 7-2 and on a 7-game tear. But… then again… we could easily be 2-7, not 5-3-1. So let me get back to my premise.
Thank GOD the Redskins beat the Vikings, as they should. Plenty of Redskins versions in the last 17 years of Dan Snyder would have choked away, self-destructed, bamboozled their way to a humiliating loss. There’s NO way they should have lost to a team that is on it’s way to setting an NFL record for FEWEST yards per carry in the history of the league.
And they didn’t. Phew. The hopeful season continues. Hopeful, because they could be coming into playing the best football of the season.
Rob Kelly is a dramatic upgrade at running back. Which is a both a relief, and an infuriation that we stuck with Matt Jones for far too long. DeSean Jackson may be “hurt” the rest of the way home – and into his winter of free agency – and I don’t think it even matters. Jamison Crowder is proving to be a first-tier slot receiver, while Garcon remains a reliable tank of a mid-range wideout. Every other throw should be directed at Jordan Reed, for as long as he’s healthy.
Ty Nsekhe appeared every bit as good as the “could start for 15 other teams” boast his GM made about him. The safety tandem of Duke Ihenacho and Donte Whittner is a drastic upgrade over the Hall/Bruton combo that began the season.
And Kirk, continues to be Kirk. I won’t waste any more time here “defending” him. I mean, frankly it’s a joke to speak of anything other than paying him the going rate for the position. If the Redskins let Kirk Cousins walk out the door this winter, mark my words: I AM DONE. To voluntarily start over at QB, just because you want to win the non-existent title of “Smartest Capologist in the NFL” would be of such unprecedented stupidity, it would shock the league. He’s gonna cost what it costs, and guess what: YOU don’t have to pay it. So shut up. And remember this: you’ll STILL have plenty of money to go out and buy the next Andre Roberts, or Terrance Knighton, or Stephen Paea – or, as I like to call them: “expensive 30 year old players another team didn’t need.”
I like this team. I really do. They suck in the red zone. I get it. But at least they are getting there a lot. I think the cards will turn in our favor eventually. I was thinking that 10-5-1 was the needed ticket for a wildcard – and no, the Cowboys are not catchable. Not after their escape against Pittsburgh.
But after the NFC pretender slaughter today – Saints, Panthers, Vikings, Packers, Falcons – I think 9-6-1 could well get you into January. And from there, who knows. But then again, who cares? As I’ve said before many times, we are the kings of “one in a row.”
When you haven’t made back-to-back playoffs since 1991, doing it again finally, would be a huge success.