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Redskins Woes - It's Not About the Play Calling

Is Kirk Cousins to blame for the Redskins early woes?

Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

The Redskins suffered a horrible defeat at home, at the hands of the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday afternoon. After the loss, there was plenty of blame to go around. The defense, again, couldn't stop a high school team. Breeland was abused in coverage, and yet again, failed to make plays. Our linebackers were slow to read, and missed many tackles. Our strong safety played like he wasn't wearing pads. Kirk Cousins couldn't throw a ball into the ocean from the beach.

The list can go on, and on. But one thing that I've heard fans echo, is that the play calling was poor. This I have to absolutely disagree with.

The play calling on Sunday against the Cowboys was not the issue. There were open receivers consistently running through the Dallas secondary, and the offensive line afforded Kirk Cousins time to see those open receivers, and deliver the ball to them...only issue was, he didn't.

This loss was 95% on Kirk Cousins. Like it or not, our franchise quarterback, making $20 million this year, has played about as poorly as one could play for a player who is viewed as the leader of this team.

Kirk overthrew a wide open Jamison Crowder early in the game for what would have been an easy six points. He missed DeSean Jackson twice on deep balls, one of which would have easily went for a score. He underthrew rookie Josh Doctson later in the game, and although Doctson came down with the catch, he was forced to stop his route to do so, allowing the defense to catch up to him and make the tackle.

Then, there are all the open receivers that Kirk failed to see. Guys were open underneath, on crossers, on outs and on the deep ball. Kirk either didn't see them, or simply decided to force the ball somewhere else.

The interception in the endzone was all on Kirk, and a touchdown there would have put us up by 10 late in the game. Instead, we let Dallas capture the momentum, and drive the field for a touchdown. The poor read to Garçon on the slant at the end of the game, resulted in a turnover on downs. Sure, we were able to stop Dallas, and get the ball back, but that was with no timeouts, and a lot of yards to get to the endzone.

When Cousins did hit open receivers, the balls where often delivered off-target. Passes were high, low and into defenders, not allowing the receivers to run after the catch.

Maybe fans are upset about the fade routes down in the redzone, and not targeting Jordan Reed, but if you re-watch the game, the Cowboys had Reed bracketed. Point is, it was not the play calls that made an underthrow to an open Garçon in the endzone. It was not the play calls that forced Kirk to overthrow and underthrow open receivers all day. It was not the play calling that forced an un-timely interception...it was our 20 million dollar man! Even the final Hail Mary attempt was uncatchable!

The running game was clicking on Sunday. Timely runs were used to set up play action. Play action resulted in players being open. It was the execution that was the issue. Could we have run the ball more? Absolutely, but it wasn't like we abandon the run, to run pass plays that didn't result in guys being wide open.

You are are not going to win many football games when you can't score touchdowns in the redzone. You will surly loose games when your quarterback throws interceptions in the endzone on bone-headed decisions.

Like it or not, this loss was on Cousins. Plays have been there for him to make...he's just not making them.