The Redskins came out looking inspired, but after two deflating penalties, a Trent Williams hold & a questionable helmet to helmet call on Brian Orakpo, it was starting to look like the MNF massacre all over again. The Redskins seemed to be content with letting the Eagles beat them with short passes just to not give up the deep ball. That plan backfired as the Eagles took what the Redskins gave them & held the ball for over 20 minutes in the first half.
Rex Grossman was…well the Rex Grossman that had people laughing at the Redskins & Mike Shanahan in the off-season for selecting him as the starting QB. He threw 4 Ints. The first interception I wasn’t mad because it felt more like a punt regarding the down & distance & the spot the Eagles ended up with the ball. The next 3 Ints in my opinion were just inexcusable. In fact this is the 3rd game in a row where Rex has thrown at least one INT that was just inexcusable. 9 interceptions in 5 games, he’s doing the team more harm than good at this point.
John Beck came in for Rex at the beginning of the 4th quarter. It was some throws Beck would’ve liked to have back but for the most part he was a welcoming change. His mobility was evident within a couple of plays of entering the game. Hopefully Shanahan names Beck the starting QB for the rest of the season on Wednesday. Still need to see Beck for a full 60 minutes with the starters but with Rex you know what you’re going to get & it’s good to go into a game not having to say “I hope Rex doesn’t F*** it up this week”
Runningbacks Ryan Torain nor Roy Helu had many lanes to run through. Some of this could be attributed to Trent Williams & Kory Lichtensteiger going out with injuries but the Eagles defense really stepped up against the run this week. Some may have felt Kyle Shanahan abandoned the run too quickly & he probably did, but when it seems that you’re on the verge of getting blown out & the running game isn’t working…its hard to stick to it.
Receivers I’d like to see more from this group. Gaffney got behind the defense a couple of times but he was targeted 10 times with only 2 catches. Moss was virtually invisible today, but Rex had such a bad day that you don’t know how much you can take away from the receivers performance today. I will say I’d like to see more of Terrence Austin in the near future as well as Niles Paul & possibly Leonard Hankerson. Getting Anthony Armstrong back should help the downfield passing game. I want to see the Redskins QBs target more guys, seems like they’re locked in on the veterans.
Fred Davis Great performance from Fred today. The Eagles had no answer for him & eventually put a cornerback on him. Was by far the Redskins best weapon on offense today.
Offensive Line Had some really costly penalties in this game. Seems like every time the offense were on the verge of moving the ball there was a costly holding or false start. Top that with huge injuries to the left side of the line & it was not a good day for this unit.
Defensive Line I would’ve like to have seen more push from this unit against a weaker offensive line in the Eagles. The Eagles O-line created easy lanes for LeSean McCoy & on Mike Vick’s scrambles some of the D-lineman were pushed so far away from the play that Vick had no choice but to take off running.
Linebackers Ryan Kerrigan got some pressure a couple of times but seemed to be just a tad late. Brian Orakpo was rather non-existent pass rushing today which was a bit of a disappointment considering he was going against a 3rd string LT. London Fletcher was solid as usual, tackle machine out there along with Rocky McIntosh they combined for 23 tackles. Still saw too many missed tackles on McCoy. McIntosh had some trouble in coverage with Brent Celek.
Secondary First half was tough on these guys. Still don’t know how much I can chalk it up to the soft coverage or guys not being in spots they were supposed to be. Would’ve liked to have seen guys be more opportunistic on a couple of those tipped balls in the first half. One play comes to mind of the Kerrigan tipping a Vick pass in the air in the redzone & the Redskins players standing around while Jeremy Maclin makes a catch. Kevin Barnes had a very tough first half checking the slot receiver. Just seemed a step too slow. Good to see O.J. Atogwe get his first interception.
Special Teams Gano & Rocca have really been steady this season. Since Gano missed that first FG of the season he’s made his last 9 that weren’t blocked. Rocca once again did a great job of pinning the Eagles deep & not giving Desean Jackson a chance to break the game open. The coverage unit could use work. I see barely any lanes for Brandon Banks to run though although he did have a 47 yard KO return.
Coaching Overall I thought the coaching lacked in this game on both sides of the ball. On offense Kyle Shanahan kept putting too much on Rex Grossman’s shoulders & I thought Mike Shanahan should’ve benched Rex Grossman at the start of the second half. Defensively Jim Haslett had a very soft gameplan in the first half. He let the Eagles dictate how they wanted the game to go. Credit to him for making adjustments at the half but I think he was coaching scared from last year’s game in this first half.
Moving on…. Panthers next week. No time to hold their heads down, John Beck needs to be the starter going into this game, get a full week of reps with starters & see if he can protect the ball better than T-Rex aka Turnover Rex. Another scrambling QB in Cam Newton but Haslett just needs to tell the defense to attack & not sit back & let a rookie QB dictate the game. More on the Panthers game later this week.