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Barely beating the Jets still counts as a W

The important thing is that we won. Also, from the recap, here are some great quotes from Shaun Suisham, who had a monstrous game and should get MVP honors:

"It's a good feeling," Suisham said. "You feel like you contributed to the team. The guys are working so hard all game and you're off on your own. When you get an opportunity like that, you feel more like a football player."...

"I'm glad they all went through," Suisham said. "I didn't do anything special."

I'd disagree; it was a little special. In the not so distant past you was getting cut from other teams and simply trying to survive professionally in the National Football League. What you did was score 15 of our 23 points in a manner that no other player on the team was likewise capable. The insecurity about not feeling like a football player, perhaps well-founded among kickers, is endearing. Awareness of your unique position as a non-athlete surrounded by athletes makes for great print, but don't sell yourself short. What you did was win Your Washington Redskins a football game.

Around the Blogosphere: Desparation is true, as I argued that this was a must not lose game. When the score was 17-3 early on, I was in panic mode, though the season was saved. I don't know if beating the Jets outside regulation constitutes a rebound from a 52-7 drubbing, but it certainly feels good to win. Interesting question for commenters: Though it's no doubt better to win than to lose, does a team that beats a 1-7 Jets by 3 points necessarily play better than one that loses 52-7 to one of the strongest teams in NFL history? I'd say yes, but it's closer than the scores suggest. Portis looked great, and here's something fascinating to chew on:

After Campell's INT in the third quarter the Redskins ran 24 offensive plays; 21 were runs. I don't think you can do that and win - overcoming a deficit in the process - agaist too many defenses.
That's called not giving up the ground game. I'd caution the coaches not to push their luck, though: Most deficits will need to be depleted by a good bit of passing.

Portis and Suisham perhaps deserve co-MVP, though I'm torn. How often does a kicker get a chance at a game ball? In Washington? But then again, how often does Portis have a 100 yard rushing game in 2007? Answer: Once, yesterday.

The Fun Bunch brings us back to reality: "The Redskins Are a Little Better Than The Jets, Cardinals and Dolphins" But we're a whole lot worse than the Patriots and a lot better than the Lions and a bit better than the Eagles and only a bit worse than the Green Bay Packers, then. Actually we're only a little bit better than Jerricho Cotchery, not even really the entire New York Jets (though isn't the whole defined by its parts?). [Jamie also puts our losses in perspective; the three teams we've lost to, Green Bay, New England, and the Giants, have lost three total games combined.]

I want to be discouraged and angry about the win but it's just too difficult, even for someone as cynical as me. Winning on the road in the NFL is difficult, winning period is difficult, and I'll take a tough, gritty, banal adjective, ugly win over a well-fought loss any day. We got our run back, we got our kick on, and those are two facets of the Redskins overall game that have not been certain thus far in 2007.

5-3 is two more games above .500 than 4-4. We have road games against New England and Green Bay behind us and are currently 1-1 in division, which keeps us in control of our own fate. In front of us lie some pretty terrifying games, but our schedule to date has not been cupcake either. Philly at home next week precedes Dallas and Tampa Bay on the road, a dangerous three game stretch that could go 0-3 just as easily as it could end 2-1 for us. But after we have Buffalo and Chicago at home, two winnable games, and later Minnesota on the road and Dallas at home in teh season finale, which could very easily be the kind of rivalry defining game we all enjoy. Halfway through our season we project to a 10-6 record, we're 5th in the NFC and thus positioned for a wild card with games against three teams sandwiching us in the standings and a win over the Detroit Lions, above us. That's not a terrible place to be and is worth enjoying while it lasts.