The good, bad, and more from the Redskins 19-17 win over Tennessee.
1. Colt McCoy. His 2nd-half spark was necessary….his poise and confidence on the final drive was a nice change from what we’ve seen the last few weeks. He was never close to making a mistake and was 11-12 for 128 yards. He had another big throw to Jackson called back because of penalty and his 3rd and 2 shot to Jackson on the final drive was the perfect call and a perfect throw. It drew the critical pass interference penalty which put them in easy field goal range. Two more things. First, I really liked his willingness to use his mobility, something Cousins hasn’t been willing to use in recent weeks. Secondly, he threw more back-shoulder throws in one half than I’ve seen any Skins’ QB throw in a game. A very good play by Tennessee corner Wilson broke up a nice back-shoulder fade to Reed in the end zone. I think we’ll see that a lot if he continues to play and I think he will. I’d be surprised if he doesn’t start in Dallas.
2. Redskin’ pass receivers. Garcon, Jackson, Roberts, and Reed are as a group, an upper-echelon receiving corps. Jackson is their first legit deep threat in years and he’s making plays every week. He had a 37-yd catch in the first half from Cousins, a 36-yarder from McCoy on the final drive which was called back by penalty but the catch and effort to get two feet in-bounds were brilliant, and he drew the P.I. at the end on another deep shot. I still think he should get more touches. Garcon is the fiercest competitor on the team, catches everything, is very good after the catch, and yes, can make big plays like the one early in the 3rd quarter. Reed is so talented it’s scary. He gets open easier than anyone on the team and his ability after the catch is top-tier. Roberts as the 4th option among this group is pretty good.
3. Kai Forbath. 4 for 4 including the game-winner. He became the most accurate kicker in the history of the franchise today.
4. Keenan Robinson. His speed is noticeable throughout and his tackling was very good.
5. Bashaud Breeland. The interception was nice even though he seemed to forget that he was in the NFL. He could’ve gotten up and run with it. More than the pick though, I thought Breeland was really active as a tackler.
6. Darrell Young. I love him as a receiver on bootlegs and as a runner in short-yardage situations.
7. Opponents’ penalties. Tennessee had 11 penalties for 96 yards today. In the last 3 weeks, Skins’ opponents have committed 38 penalties for 294 yards. The illegal use of hands on #62/Schwenke on the Titans final offensive drive was the key to forcing Tennessee to punt. Interesting how conservative Ken Whisenhunt played that final drive. He seemed to feel confident that his defense could keep the Skins from moving into FG range.
1. Kirk Cousins. His good plays just aren’t enough to overcome the bad plays he makes in games. He may grow out of it down the road but it’s not good enough now on a team that struggles on defense and special teams and needs consistent offense without back-breaking mistakes. The interception was awful. His decision to throw a shovel pass to Helu in the red zone was near-disaster. More than anything, he seems to have lost his confidence over the last 3-4 games. He looked rattled again today. It seemed doubtful that the team would’ve won the game without the 2nd-half QB change.
2. Special teams. The turnover on the punt return was a good result although unforced (bad mistake by McCluster) and Forbath’s 4 field goals were the difference in the game but the Skins got nothing on returns and the Trent Murphy offsides penalty on the first-half 4th and 4 was a major lack of discipline.
3. Lack of defensive disruption. There was more pressure today than in recent weeks but one sack and maybe 3-4 hurries just isn’t good enough against a team that had given up an average of 3 sacks per game before today. Jason Hatcher and Ryan Kerrigan were playmakers at times but the defense still has yet to make one of those huge game-impacting plays.
1. Bad judgement by Jackson to get up and jump up in McCourty’s face after the late P.I. call. A 15-yard penalty wouldn’t have been good in that spot.
2. Morris’ non-fumble was ruled correctly but he seems to have an issue with holding onto the ball.
3. Logan Paulson has a problem holding onto the ball also. I’m unsure as to where his value lies with Reed healthy..
4. Compton replaced for Palumbus who got beat on the Cousins sack/fumble in the first half and also had the holding penalty at the end of the first half.
5. A 3rd and 10 Whitehurst to Kendall Wright throw in the first half that Wright extended beyond the first-down marker was spotted poorly. However, the Titans were out of timeouts and couldn’t challenge the spot.
6. Jarvis Jenkins misses too many tackles although he seems to be in position to make many, sometimes for loss.