1. I tried as hard as I could over the last few weeks to gird my loins for an opening week loss to the New Orleans Saints. Sure, I picked the Redskins in our weekly Picks post, but that was more due to my belief in Shanahan and his ability to use eight months to gameplan for one game. How am I supposed to stay "realistic" and level-headed this season when we knock off Drew Brees...in New Orleans...with a rookie quarterback?
2. Did we really force Drew Brees and that offense into a three-and-out to start the game? I was speechless...but just for a second. Of all the things that transpired in the game, that initial defensive stop remains as something that stands out in my mind prominently. I could not believe it and I still find myself in disbelief. We were at Irish Whiskey D.C. with our good friends at Fanspeak.com (we'll be there again on the 30th) and people exchanged silent stares of wonder as the Saints prepared to punt. I don't think you can understate the importance of that stop to the outcome of the game.
3. Keeping with the defensive theme, how about the workmanlike manner with which we covered those receivers? Let's set aside for a moment that it looked like Jimmy Graham was being covered by his little brother for much of the day. I have a difficult time believing anyone out there expected better than we saw. Drew Brees got his numbers because...well, he is Drew Brees. There were missteps here and there, but outside of the last touchdown we surrendered where Madieu Williams appeared to be racing to cover a guy in the second row, there wasn't a lot that left me screaming at the television.
4. Earlier in the week, upon hearing about Brandon Meriweather's injury, I talked up DeJon Gomes...in the same way I talked up Chris Horton, Tanard Jackson and even a certain Reed Doughty. My expectations were low. My expectations were exceeded. Great job, DeJon.
5. Is it possible that Leonard Hankerson was always below Josh Morgan on the depth chart or did Josh get the starting nod because of something they saw during the week? Either way, you won't hear me complaining as it looked like the Shanahans had exactly who they wanted on the field.
6. It was great to see Aldrick Robinson contribute meaningfully to the outcome. Sure, it came at the expense of Pierre Garcon getting dinged, but to be able to come off the bench and make a great play on a quick pass as well as the touchdown grab is impressive. Someone asked me yesterday about him and our wide receivers...a sore subject for us all. Our problem has been that we have depended on #2 and #3 receivers to be our top guys...for years. It is even debated today whether or not we have a "true" #1 receiver on this roster, but I agree with Steve Shoup that it is not imperative to have that kind of player. To see a guy like Aldrick perform from his spot on the depth chart is very satisfying because it speaks to the depth of young talent that the Shanahans have put in place. The job is not done, but the results show that the job is being done.
***Who was the last #1 receiver the Redskins had? This question is super-debatable...please keep it civil. Darnerian McCants is not an acceptable answer.