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Redskins-Colts Winners and Losers

Winners

Ryan Torain:  Awesome day for the ATV.  He showed surprising speed to the edge, and the Colts had their hands full trying to bring him down.  The spin move he threw to shuck Mathis in the backfield was jaw-dropping, and he consistently got yards after first contact. 

Lorenzo Alexander:  Yet another huge day on special teams.  I'm honestly surprised every time a returner manages to hold on to the ball after an Alexander hit in coverage.  The Redskins have a dilemma on their hands: he's too valuable at LB to risk on special teams, and too good in kick coverage not to.

Mike Sellers:  Great run blocking and taking dump-off passes for big gains, and even more huge special teams hits.  It seems like every week, Sellers and Alexander are taking people's heads off in kick coverage.  I was skeptical about Sellers' new role in the offense, but if he can catch them and rumble like he did this week, he's a real threat. 

Brandon Banks:  It's just a matter of (short) time before this kid takes one to the house.  He's stupid fast, but he also has underrated vision and instincts as a returner.  And apparently a blocked field goal too?

Santana Moss:  Everybody knows he's our #1 receiving threat.  So how does he still manage to get so wide open so often? 

London Fletcher:  7 tackles and a forced fumble.  No big deal. 

Anthony Armstrong: 5 catches, and officially way better than Joey Galloway.

Donovan McNabb:  He was disappointing on the last two possessions, and he had a couple of bad plays earlier too, but he also made alot of plays in a collapsing pocket.  The Skins made 4 trips to the red zone and came away with 3 touchdowns because of McNabb and Torain making plays.  Also, moved past Troy Aikman on the all-time completions list.

[Edit] Brian Orakpo:  Forced a huge fumble.  It was also the only time that I remember a replay being shown zoomed in on Orakpo, and he was getting flagrantly held by the facemask.  Makes you wonder if there were more that went uncalled.

Losers

Jim Haslett:  Look, Peyton Manning is the best QB in the league, and probably one of the best ever.  That doesn't mean you throw away the whole football handbook when you go against him.  Our DL and LBs were clearly uncomfortable with that stand-up-and-dance-around presnap formation.  The pass rush was totally ineffective because our rushers were standing tall and losing leverage.  The secondary got picked apart, and our 6 DB personnel packages were abused by the running game.  If their receivers are breaking our zones anyway, why not try coming out of a conventional 3-4 or 4-3 and bringing some pressure?  Why were there no adjustments at halftime, when we were obviously getting torched?  The sad thing is, the Colts' O-line is hardly a dominant unit, and we didn't even test them.

Carlos Rogers: Catch. The. Ball.

Kareem Moore:  How do the Redskins manage to identify and develop so many stone-handed DBs? 

The O-Line:  McNabb almost always had his own linemen in his face when he dropped back to pass.  They opened some holes for Torain, but they also couldn't keep him clean in the backfield on several plays.  Freeney is elite, but Trent Williams has held his own against elite rushers before, which makes me wonder if he's not 100% healthy.  

Graham Gano: A 48 yarder is no chip shot, and it's definitely not guaranteed points.  But Gano is starting to show an alarming tendency to shank on longer kicks.  He has the leg strength to hit from 60, but he seems to lose all control when he's kicking from over 45 yards or so.  With the Skins playing so many close games, those misses really hurt.

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