NFC East Round-Up Week 8

Matthew Emmons-US PRESSWIRE

After an ugly win, The Giants have separated themselves from the rest of the NFC East; but the other three teams in the division have much more to focus on in the short term before they can afford to worry about the division race.

WASHINGTON

Of course I asked for a blowout...and I got a blowout[1]. Like the spoiled brat I compared myself to - screaming for a new toy - I got what I wanted and at the same time also got smacked up beside the head the moment I touched down in the real world. In this case, it was Pittsburgh Pennsylvania.

I'll give my overview of the Washington Redskins, Pittsburgh Steelers game the dignity and simplicity it deserves. We got stomped.

On offense - our receivers looked like Tina Turner before 1976; they were so scarred and battered.

On defense... I can't think of a joke offensive enough to adequately liken to our futility.

In the thread on HH during the game, it didn't take two quarters before the blame guns got uncocked and fired. To be clear: there is plenty to go around. Rookie backs Alfred Morris and Robert Griffin III are the only ones who can say they did their jobs at a high level. The O-line, as well, didn't have a bad game. Outside of that, however, nobody in the Skins organization should have left Heinz Field[2] feeling anything but disgusted about their performance on Sunday.

Of all the culprits, the most pointed attacks were aimed at defensive coordinator Jim Haslett. Looking over his record, I don't see any truly great prolonged successes. I'm not going to say he is unworthy of his post - but I will this: he has yet to prove himself.

The case can be made that Haslett is doing the best job that's possible while what would be the Redskins most important defenders at each level (Carriker- up front, Orakpo - in the middle, Meriweather -deep) sit unused on IR.

But I'm not one to make that case. If Rex Ryan gets fired, I'll be the first to say I hope Bruce Allen and Mike Shanahan at least give him a call and a free dinner at McCormick and Schmick.

As far as Coach Shanahan's culpability - it's total: he's the head coach. But great coaches don't avoid blowouts as much as they are able to motivate their teams to respond to them. On Monday Shanahan said about the Carolina game: "Everyone knows it's a must-win when you're 3-5".

Exactly, right - now let's see it.

DALLAS AND NEW YORK

The Cowboys are a bad team that can actually play extremely well. That's a scary combination for a Redskins rival. Their secondary - (coached by a Ryan brother) shut-down Eli Manning for sixty minutes. Not easily done. Forget about the loss, that's a statement game for the Cowboys defense.

The ‘Boys offense isn't terrible either - just too stupid too often to win consistently right now. The thing is that you can never count on a team - not even this team - to shoot itself in the foot on a given Sunday. It's going to take one of the Redskins' better defensive days to slow them down when we face them.

Thanksgiving in Dallas will be a hell of a tough game to win - unless we show up for all three phases.

As far as the Giants - it's an old cliché that great teams find a way to win games where they don't play well. I think that's truer in sports like basketball, but the Giants have to come away from Sunday feeling good they have a squad full of difference makers on both sides of the ball. With a three game cushion on the rest of the division, it's hard not to see them hosting a playoff game. The G-men will probably want to lose a few more along the way to guarantee a familiar late-round playoff road game, where they can adopt their favorite roll as Giant Giant-killers.

PHILADELPHIA

It's the end of an era. After 14 seasons Andy Reid finally lost the week coming back from a bye. I'll use this word again in regards to the Reid and the Eagles: The situation is ominous.

Michael Vick pulled back the veil after the game and talked about his coach Reid's imminent decision as to whether or not to bench his $100,000,000 man. With two-touchdowns and no turnovers Vick picked a great time to stick his nose out into the press room and say, "Hey, I'm trying my hardest." *Sniffle*.

So is Andy. So is Andy. And that's his quarterback - or was.

As much as we all like playing head coach - what would you do turn this team around right now for the next two damn-close-to-must-win-or-get-fired games for the Philly: @New Orleans and vs. The Cowboys? Personally, I got nothing. Not like I mind watching this train wreck rumble on...



[1] Yes, thanks, I understand the irony that it was the Redskins who were blown out and not the Steelers. After the Bucs game, I had thought about demanding a blowout every week, for this one reason. That same week - week 4 - Bill Belicheck's[1] Pats had come back from 2-TDs against the Bills to end-up winning by the lopsided margin of 52 to 28. It's been a minute since I've enjoyed that kind of dominance from a Shanahan coached team - at least a half a decade. I remembered beating the Dolphins 38-3 in the first round of the playoffs - and just laughing hysterically at their poor down-trodden faces. I was young immature and in many ways I have grown up little since. I miss that kind of warranted obnoxiousness. I've always felt Mike Shanahan (who I told y'all last week was my uncle - so yeah I'm probably bias) - had all the ingenious characteristics of Belicheck, except without the ruthless streak. (In other words his thing was offense not defense.) So, I figured once he had his franchise QB in place, like Belicheck has had - (look up B.B.'s record without Brady) - it was only a matter of weeks before the Redskins opened up a can one somebody. I was wrong. We're not there yet. Not close. That time may come, where we are worried about point spread as much as we are about W's - but right now there is no question about it: the only thing that matters is that this group - all coaches included - start getting into the habit of scoring more points than their opponents on Sundays.

[2] Yes, I accidently called Heinz Field, Three-Rivers Stadium last Tuesday: an error that served as a pretty good indicator that I had no clue what I was talking about when I said the Steelers looked defense looked good but its offense looked garbage, and that we should win by 3-TDs. With our defense, even I would be surprised at this point to see a lopsided win for the ‘Skins this season.

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