Kirk Cousins and the first team offense had another shaky outing against the Cincinnati Bengals this past Sunday. The offense failed again to produce points on their opening drive, while also starting a third straight week with a 3 and out. The Redskins first four drives, totaled 16 plays for 7 yards, for 3 points and a pick six. The Redskins also were kept out of the end zone in the first quarter for the third straight week. The positive out of the Redskins' first drive was how they responded after the defensive touchdown, with a 10-play, 75-yard drive ending in a touchdown of their own. They followed that drive up with a 9-play, 45-yard drive ending in a field goal to cut the game to within one point. The run game started working, blocks and assignments were being executed, and Rob Kelley had a good outing with blocking he can finally work with.
However, Washington’s air attack is still an issue. It starts with Cousins’ spotty decision-making, and his inability to hit his throw in the rhythm of the play. He’s had occasions where he’s been inaccurate, and occasions where his indecisiveness caused him to hold on to the ball too long. Cousins’ second quarter interception was a result of a decision to check the ball down, only after scanning the field. In man coverage there’s no time to throw late in the flats, it allows any defender with good hands and a head start to make a break back to the ball, and sprint towards the end zone. The offensive line has been struggling in pass-protection as well, third year guard Brandon Scherff has been a liability in spurts this pre-season, and Trent Williams has had issues as well. Despite looking the part in training camp, Terrelle Pryor Sr. has underwhelmed as a receiver this pre-season. Pryor’s numerous drops have left fans and media alike muddled, concerned, and wondering if he and Cousins are on the same page. Well, right now the answer is no.
Cousins, on his weekly segment with CBS Radio 106.7 the Fan’s “Grant & Danny”, acknowledged the issues that the offense is going through.
On his “overarching” thoughts on the first team offense’s performance against the Bengals, he remarked: “I feel like the positives will be we really did run the ball pretty effectively, I was really pleased with that. I was pleased with the 75 yard drive that we had, we were able to punch it in. On the negative side, again, too many 3 and outs, for different reasons. Certainly the interception, is a game changing play that just can’t happen. A lot of those three-and-outs are very fixable, so we can say that “it’s fixable, it’s fixable” but it’s all talk until it gets fixed. So we got to be better and it starts with me, with the ball in my hand.”
The Redskins are officially game planning for the Philadelphia Eagles, who are set to enter FedEx Field week 1. So while Cousins claims that it’s all talk right now, and they have to show that their struggles are actually fixed, the expectations of living up to those remarks will be high for he and this offense.
Pre-season is a pretty tough time for fans, because you can only go off of what you are seeing on the field. With that said, how high is your concern level heading into the season? Vote in our poll and share your thoughts in the comment below.
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