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Analysing the Redskins Remaining Schedule

So far the Redskins 2014 season has been another familiar story of frustration. Yet again an off season of rebuilding hope in a team that continues to specialise in serving it’s fans a regular dose of false expectation, will leave many with a bitter yet familiar taste in their mouths. But is it over or is their still hope?

Thomas B. Shea

Although it is starting to feel like it, the season is not over yet. Let's not get too eager to man the life boats and float out into the choppy waters of our other favourite sports teams and hobbies while we watch the Redskins sink into the abyss like a perennial Titanic.  Yes the Redskins are sitting at a paltry 3-6, and yes we have little faith that this team can replicate a 2012 style winning streak, but let's have a look ahead and see what we have got.

Week 11 vs Buccaneers

One of the most over-hyped teams this off season, with their defense being tipped to become the next elite unit in the league. Well guess what, 1-7 is not elite and the Bucs are looking awful having lost 4 games in a row. The cynic would suggest that the Redskins will play their part and help them break their losing streak, but c'mon... this is a win and the Redskins go 4-6.

Week 12 at 49ers

The 49ers at 4-4 are another team that have failed to deliver in 2014. They are falling from a greater height and still boast a talented and physical team so this remains the toughest game on our schedule.  I would usually say that at home the 49ers would be huge favourites for this game, but they haven't turned Levi's Stadium into a fortress yet. Their offense is struggling again, but defensively they remain strong, and will have a lot of key players back from injury and suspension by this point. With a bit of confidence the Redskins may surprise a few and keep it close, but I think this has to go down as an expected loss. Redskins go 4-7.

Week 13 at Colts

Andrew Luck is playing some phenomenal football and carrying an above average team with him. Outside of the media hype around RGIII vs Luck the real match up here is pretty bad for the Redskins, with Luck and his offense going up against our patchy defense. The onus will therefore be on RGIII and our offense to keep it close in a guaranteed shootout. That can be done. The Colts have a suspect defense, but away from home this feels like another loss. 4-8 calling.

Week 14 vs Rams

By the time the Rams come to Washington (and more RGIII talk due to the 'Trade'), the Redskins will most likely be in evaluation mode, and you know what happens when we go into evaluation mode!? St Louis are another team many expected big things from this year, especially on defense.  There are signs that they are coming together, but on offense they just can't get going. I feel this should be a Redskins win at home, but it will be a tough fight. It will take us to 5-8, and a glimmer of hope.

Week 15 at Giants

This is the final act of the 2014 season.  These next three games will dictate our expectations for 2015.  A three week stretch of games against our most hated rivals in the NFC East starting in New York. After a promising few weeks at the start of the season the Giants are now starting to fall apart and lose games.  They are currently on 3-5, and aside from the emergence of Beckham Jr as a promising WR talent they have little to shout about in New York. If the Redskins want this win it is there for the taking.  Coming after a win in week 14 I think we sneak this one and go 6-8.

Week 16 vs Eagles

Eagles at home. I have no doubt that the players circled this game when they got back to Washington in mid September after a close loss. Despite the loss it showed the Redskins can hang with the Eagles and could beat them if they keep improving. A couple of factors to consider.  One, the Eagles could have the division wrapped up by this point. Two, Foles is out with a broken collarbone. Personally I think Sanchez will be a better player in this offense but that is a different article. Tough game. The homer in me gives us a win here. 7-8.

Week 17 vs Cowboys

The eternal optimist in me expects the Cowboys' wheels to come off every week but they refuse to go down easy. Despite that I think the Cowboys won't be playing for much here. The offense is legit, but Haslett seems to have their number. Home game, last game of the season, Cowboys? Win. 8-8.

I am sure many of you might disagree with my predictions or even think it is futile to predict anything, and you could be correct. The loss against the Vikings is a prime example of a game I thought we should be winning. That said, the point of this is that outside of the 49ers and Colts games the Redskins schedule offers us some hope of a turnaround and a respectable season. I think that is vitally important to Gruden's reign as Head Coach going forward as he builds a new team.