Sunday's game against the rival New York Giants turned out to be a great football game. The Redskins started out as good as one could hope with a quick three and out on defense, but then disaster struck in the form of a gaff on punt return coverage when Quinton Dunbar let the football hit him, leading to a Giants recovery. Despite some sloppy play and trouble scoring touchdowns inside the red zone yet again, the Redskins scratched and clawed their way back, and a late Su'a Cravens interception sealed the victory for the good guys.
Below are my Studs and Duds of the game.
- The entire replacement offensive line: When both starters Kory Lichtensteiger and Shawn Lauvao exited the game with injuries, the Redskins had to scramble to put together a makeshift unit. That unit, comprised of Ty Nsekhe(LT), Trent Williams(LG), Spencer Long(C), Brandon Scherff(RG) and Morgan Moses(RT), opened up running lanes that haven't been there all season, and protected Kirk Cousins in the pocket. The front five looked physical, mentally tough, and BIG!
- Su'a Cravens: The rookie linebacker had an interception that sealed the victory late in the fourth quarter, and nearly had another one a bit earlier in the game. He plays with speed, instincts and physicality, and needs to be on the field all three downs for this defense.
- Chris Baker: Baker often seems like the only player on the defensive line who is actually causing any disruption. His motor is great, and he is showing that he can be a force to block. He had 3 tackles, a sack and a quarterback hurry in the game, but it was also his sideline spat with defensive coordinator Joe Barry that lands him on this list.
- Dustin Hopkins: Hopkins was clutch today(as he's been all season)nailing all five of his attempts, with a long of 49 yards.
- Tress Way: Who on this team throws a better deep ball than Cousins?...you guessed it - Tress Way! Not only is he one of the best punters in the NFL, but he's got one hell of an accurate arm.
DeSean Jackson and Jamison Crowder: The receiving tandem was outstanding today, combining for 9 receptions, for 174 yards and 2 touchdowns. They continue to get open for Cousins - now, if he can just find them with consistency...
- Will Compton: Compton was not getting the job done today. He was slow on his reeds, got sealed all too often on runs between the tackles, and was not good in coverage. Too many missed tackles will cost you your job in this league. Compton should be looking over his shoulder at the rookie Cravens.
- Dashaun Phillips: Again, Phillips looked poor in coverage. He was beaten often, and missed some key tackles. It may be time to turn to the rookie Fuller.
- Ryan Grant: CATCH THE DAMN BALL! This isn't the preseason anymore.
- Joe Barry: I'll finally concede; a change needs to be made on defense. Barry was a bit more aggressive in the second half, but he continues to try and force a square peg into a round hole. Enough is enough.