DISCUSS THE REDSKINS IN OUR FAN FORUM!
INJURY UPDATE: QB Robert Griffin [concussion] will practice tomorrow and looks good to start on Sunday if he has no setbacks. RG3 will be evaluated after every practice to ensure he remains free of concussion symptoms.
How is RG3 doing this year compared to the other rookie quarterbacks, like Andrew Luck and Ryan Tannehill? Read Tracking the Rookie Quarterbacks: Week 5, my weekly evaluation of all starting rookie passers in the NFL.
How do the Redskins rank against the other 31 teams in the NFL? Find out in the latest weekly edition of The World's Most Prestigious Power Poll. [Smell the prestige!]
The Redskins have cut PK Billy Cundiff after he missed five of the last eight field goal attempts, including two kicks from 31 yards. To replace him, the Redskins signed PK Kai Forbath, a 5'11" 197-lb 25-year-old from UCLA. Check out our write-up of Forbath.
The Redskins also released OLB Markus White and replaced him with OLB Mario Addison. White is a 2011 Redskins draft pick who was waived at the end of training camp earlier this year, but re-signed after OLB Brian Orakpo was put on injured reserve.
Gary Horton of ESPN looks at what the Redskins offense would be like if RG3 misses more time and Kirk Cousins takes over behind center.
If this offense has to play with Cousins, the good news is that the Redskins have developed a legitimate run game in the last couple of weeks with rookie Alfred Morris. With RG3 out of the lineup, the coaches will call a much more conservative game with a heavy emphasis on the run -- which could really help Cousins in his play-action package.
So can this Redskins team stay competitive if they are without their franchise QB for a short time? The short answer is no.
The Redskins aren't an elite team even with RG3, and their schedule in the next month is brutal. On top of that, they have several weaknesses that may not be fixable right now. They have a secondary that doesn't match up versus elite passing teams (especially with big receivers against their smallish corners), and they have an offensive line that is inconsistent in pass protection -- and that was with a QB with great mobility. Cousins can direct a run-heavy scheme with some jumbo packages and a safe passing game, but he must take care of the football and avoid turnovers because this offense can't afford to play from behind with him at QB.
The Redskins can win a couple of games with in Cousins at QB, but they won't contend for a playoff spot with him behind center.
Good advice here from former NFL Super Bowl coach Dick Vermeil:
Asking him to abandon his instincts would dramatically alter the Redskins’ offense, reduce Griffin’s value and, according to longtime NFL coach Dick Vermeil, prove futile.
“If he can run, he will run. That’s all there is to it,” Vermeil said. “I don’t care what you do. If a guy can really run, he’s going to run, and he’s going to make some plays.”
Vermeil, now retired, added that the worst thing the team and Coach Mike Shanahan could do is overreact to Griffin’s concussion, despite the NFL’s recent priority on protecting players from head injuries.
I've written about this extensively and why it was a major problem for the Redskins last Sunday against the Falcons, but Mike Jones reminds us that the offense is terrible on third down. As in, worst in the NFL terrible.
John Keim takes a look at how RG3 is doing on third down.
Griffin’s third-down passing numbers aren’t very good when it comes to converting them into first downs. His passer rating on third down is 86.6; he’s completed 21 of 34 passes for 190 yards – his 5.59 yards per attempt on this down is topped by 25 other quarterbacks (with at least 17 attempts). But he’s also only one of eight quarterbacks not to throw an interception on this down. Anyway, when it comes to third down passing, Griffin has faced third and seven or long 22 times on his pass attempts (this does not include when he has run the ball). On those plays, he has completed 14 – but only two have resulted in a first down. ...
On plays of third-and-10 or more, Griffin has completed eight of 10 passes for 47 yards and no first downs. But seven of those completions went for positive yards. He’s also run eight times when faced with third and 10 or more and managed three first downs. Not all of them were designed runs, but on those eight runs he’s gained 82 yards.
I would point out that RG3 had several passes dropped by his receivers on third down, with the guilty parties including Pierre Garcon, Santana Moss and Fred Davis.
Rich Campbell hands out his week 5 game balls and gassers.
Rookie backup QB Kirk Cousins, who saw his first real NFL action last week in the second half against the Falcons, hopes he'll get another chance to play and, when he does, that he'll do better.
Special teams ace ILB Lorenzo Alexander is holding his fourth annual bowling turounament for charity. Check it out.
Redskins defensive backs had some fun with Kenny Mayne of ESPN on the subject of whether the proper term is cornerback or edgeback. Have a look at the video.