Snaps- The Washington Redskins’ offense was on the field for 41 plays, 43 snaps and 23:24 of the game clock, all of which were either tied for or set new season lows.
This was the second week in a row they ran exactly 41 plays. That is the lowest number of plays run by any team this season by a margin of five and Washington’s second-lowest total since 1960 (40 plays at Tampa Bay in Week 14 of the 1994 season). The Redskins rank dead last in plays per game this season (52.8)
Snap data goes back to 2012, and the offense’s 43 snaps is now the lowest total by the franchise in recorded history. Their previous low of 45 snaps was set in Week 13 of last season against the Eagles and then matched four weeks later against that same Eagles team in the regular season finale.
We can use a bit of deduction to take things back even further, though. A team cannot have more plays in a game than they do snaps, so with this knowledge we can safely surmise that their 43 snaps against Minnesota was the team’s lowest total since at least 1993 (two games with 42 plays run in that season).
Washington also ranks last in average time of possession (26:24).
Yards- The Skins were held to 216 yards of total offense on Thursday night, their third lowest total of the season. However, on the flip side, the team’s 5.27 yards per play was the third-highest average they posted all year.
Through eight weeks, they rank 28th in yards per play (4.95), 29th in yards per drive (24.6) and 30th in yards per game (261.1).
Points- Washington scored 9 points against Minnesota, which was sadly just their fourth-lowest total of the season. For the Vikings, however, it was the fewest number of points they’ve given up all year, which marks the fourth time in 2019 that a team has set a new season low in points allowed when playing the Redskins.
It would certainly help if the offense was able to score touchdowns, but that just simply hasn’t been the case, as of late. The team did not reach the end zone once for the second consecutive week and has now gone nine quarters and just under 145 minutes of game time without scoring a touchdown.
Red Zone- The offense did not reach the end zone on either of their two trips to the red zone. This probably had something to do with the team only gaining positive yardage on one of their seven plays and losing yardage on three of them (-5 total).
Washington has now failed to score a red-zone touchdown in five straight games. What is perhaps just as sad is they’ve only reached the red zone one time per game (5 total) in that stretch.
The Redskins are the only team in the league that has not scored a single touchdown in the red zone since Week 4, and their 40% conversion rate in the red area this season ranks 28th in the NFL.
3rd & 4th Down- The Redskins converted on both of their first two plays on the money down, but were unsuccessful on each of their next five tries and ended up going 2-for-7 overall on third down (28.6%).
Not only did they not move the sticks on any of the last five third downs they faced, they actually lost yardage on all of them combined because of an 8-yard sack on their final third down of the night. The team averaged a paltry 2.14 yards per play on their third downs in the game.
They are the only club in the entire league that has not converted on at least 40% of their third-down tries once in a single game this season. That means they’ve been held under 40% in all eight of their contests, which is three fewer times than any other team has been held below that number.
Washington’s 25% conversion rate on the money down ranks 31st in the league (New York Jets at 20.5%), is tied for the 14th worst third-down success rate on record through any team’s first eight games and would be the worst clip in recorded franchise history by over four percentage points (29.3% in 2010) if it holds.
They did not go for it once on fourth down for the fourth time in their last five games. They’ve also lost four of their last five matchups, which would lead one to believe that you’d be going for it more, but no, not the Redskins.
Giveaways- The Burgundy and Gold turned the ball over twice on Thursday night. They gave the ball away via an interception and a fumble, with both of those plays starting in Minnesota territory.
The Skins have turned it over at least once in five of their last six games and are averaging 2.33 giveaways per game in that span, which is the fourth-highest rate in the league since Week 3.
Penalties- The Redskins’ offense was responsible for committing four penalties, but only one of them was accepted (10-yard holding). This was the second-fewest number of accepted penalties charged to the offense all season (0 at Miami). If you take those two games out of the equation, the team is averaging five infractions per game on this side of the ball.
|Quarterbacks (3 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Case Keenum *||29||67%|
Case Keenum- Case Keenum could not make it all the way through the game for the second time this year. He was concussed on the second-to-last offensive play of the first half and did not return after halftime. He played 29 snaps before exiting, which represented roughly two-thirds of the offense’s snaps (67.4%).
The veteran passer was actually playing fairly decently against his old squad before leaving the game. Keenum completed 12 of his 16 passes (75%) for 130 yards (8.13 YPA), 9 first downs, no touchdowns and no interceptions (98.4 passer rating).
This marked the first time that he had ever completed 75% of his passes in consecutive games, albeit on a small sample size, and his 9 first downs weren’t that many behind the 12 chain movers he collected in his last three games combined. However, this was his fourth straight game with under 170 passing yards and the third time he’s failed to throw a touchdown in his last four appearances.
Keenum was sacked twice by the Vikings on Thursday night. He suffered his concussion on the second sack, lost a fumble on both plays and watched as Minnesota recovered his first fumble and parlayed it into a scoring drive. Keenum’s 6 fumbles on the year are tied for the third most in the league. In case of you were wondering, Kirk Cousins ranks second with seven of them.
He didn’t run the ball once again too, despite having what looked like a solid opportunity to scramble for a touchdown from three yards out. Running the ball just is not a big part of his game. Among the 48 quarterbacks with 1,000 or more attempts in the last decade, Keenum ranks outside the top 25 of that group in yards per carry (3.32), rushing yards per game (6.7) and run-to-pass ratio (0.06).
Like I said earlier though, it wasn’t a horrible showing by Keenum. He posted a season-best 72.9 QBR for the game.
Dwayne Haskins- Keenum was replaced in the second half by Dwayne Haskins, who made what was the second appearance of his NFL career. Haskins only dropped back to pass a total of seven times and had just two of those go the way he would’ve liked them to.
The rookie first-round pick completed three of his five passes (60%) for 33 yards, a first down, no touchdowns and an interception. Nearly two-thirds of his yards were gained on a 21-yard pass to Adrian Peterson, which also gave him his lone first down of the night. His two other completions were a pair of 6-yarders, although one of those was quite meaningless because it was thrown on a 3rd-and-16 play.
The pick he threw came on his first and, so far, only pass of his pro career to former OSU teammate Terry McLaurin. Haskins sailed the pass high, which caused it to bounce off the fingertips of an outstretched McLaurin at the Minnesota 17-yard line and fall into the hands of Vikings safety Anthony Harris at the 14. Haskins has now thrown 22 passes in the NFL and four of them have been intercepted.
He was sacked twice for a combined total of 18 yards, with one of them coming on third down. If you add up Haskins’ interception (4) and sack totals (4) they equal the number of first downs he has picked up (7 passing and 1 rushing).
He posted an utterly pathetic 0.0 raw QBR, which if you’re not familiar with this metric, or any other one that’s presented on a 0-100 scale for that matter, is the absolute worst score you can get.
Colt McCoy- Bill Callahan essentially stated that Colt McCoy is and will be the third-string quarterback on the depth chart for the rest of the season. The 33-year-old may have well made the last start of his career in Week 5 against the Patriots.
There is also a good chance the walk-year signal caller catches on as a backup wherever Jay Gruden lands his next job.
|Wide Receivers (5 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Terry McLaurin *||40||93%|
|Paul Richardson *||33||77%|
Terry McLaurin- Terry McLaurin once again showed that he is the best receiver on the Redskins’ roster. He led the club in targets (6), receptions (4), receiving yards (39) and first downs (3). McLaurin also drew a 19-yard defensive pass interference that set the offense up at the Minnesota 2-yard line. Almost all of that production (all but a 5-yard reception) came against Xavier Rhodes, who now looks to be a shell of his former self.
Scary Terry’s DPI-inducing route and a 6-yard grab on 3rd-and-1 earlier in the same drive gave the Skins two of their three conversions on third down in the game (penalties go for “no play” and do not officially count as conversions).
The two passes McLaurin didn’t catch had a major impact on the outcome. The first was an end-zone target that was thrown behind him on the play after Rhodes’ penalty. The Redskins ended up settling for a field goal on that drive.
His sixth and final target of the night would’ve gained at least 15 yards and given Washington another red-zone possession, but McLaurin’s OSU teammate Dwayne Haskins sailed the pass high and it was intercepted by safety Anthony Harris. Terry Mac, who was in the process of falling to the turf after stretching out for the catch, did use his leg to take down Harris and record the first tackle of his NFL career.
Paul Richardson- It looked like P-Rich had broken out, at least in a sense, when he dropped a 9-8-83-1 line on the Bears in Week 3, but he went on to notch just 5 receptions for 28 yards and no first downs in his next four games. He did that despite getting 12 targets and running 96 routes in that span, which gave him yards per target (2.33 YPT) and per route (0.29 YPRR) averages that ranked dead last in the league by a pretty decent margin (10-target minimum).
While Richardson did not totally redeem himself this week, he had what was at least a serviceable showing. He caught a 17-yarder on Washington’s first offensive play, moved the chains with a 7-yard grab on 3rd-and-6 a drive later and picked up 6 yards on the very next play. His fourth and final target came on a deep pass that would’ve gained at least 30 yards, but Trae Waynes broke the connection up. He got all four of his targets in the first half.
In all, Richardson finished the day with 3 receptions, 34 yards, 2 first downs and a team-high 60 air yards. So, he put up better numbers in one half than he had in basically the last month combined. The question is will he keep it up and maybe even improve or will his production fall off a cliff the way it did after his last decent game.
Trey Quinn- Slot man Trey Quinn caught one of his 3 targets and gained 15 yards on the play. The reception was tied for the second-longest offensive gain of his career, his longest, a 19-yarder, came four days prior against the 49ers.
His other two looks came on third down, but both passes fell incomplete, including an end-zone target that would’ve been negated by a holding penalty even if Quinn had been able to make the catch.
Mr. Irrelevant has caught a pass in ten consecutive games and was targeted at least three times in each of those contests (average of 4.8 targets). Yet, despite all of those opportunities, he has failed to gain more than 36 yards in each of his last nine games (average of 22.9 yards).
Kelvin Harmon- Harmon made his way onto the field for 11 snaps. He caught his lone target for a gain of 12 yards on a 2nd-and-10 play midway through a Washington field goal drive. Harmon has caught all seven passes thrown his way this season and has picked up first downs on four of them. Perhaps the coaches should consider giving him a bump in playing time.
Steven Sims- The rookie UDFA out of Kansas had never played fewer than four snaps on offense and was averaging 1.75 touches per game on that side of the ball coming into this game. However, on Thursday night, he was only out there for a single snap and did not get the ball on the play.
|Tight Ends (3 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Jeremy Sprinkle *||33||77%|
|Hale Hentges *||18||42%|
Jeremy Sprinkle- Sprinkle played 33 snaps and was targeted twice on Thursday night. He caught both of the passes thrown his way and gained 6 yards on each of the plays (12 receiving yards). The catches came on second down and set the team up for third-and-short conversions on the following snaps, which just so happened to be their only third-down conversions of the day. Sprink has caught exactly two passes in four straight contests and in five of his last six; he had two career multi-catch games before that.
He forced a missed tackle for just the second time in his career on his final reception, but illegally lowered his head and initiated helmet-to-helmet contact with Xavier Rhodes to do so. He should’ve been penalized for the play, but no flag was thrown. The hit knocked Rhodes out of the game with a possible concussion.
However, Sprinkle wasn’t so lucky earlier in the game, when he was charged with a holding infraction that negated a first down on a 3rd-and-1 rush. He has now been flagged for holding five times (one declined) in his last 19 games.
Sprinkle’s 46.1 PFF grade for the performance was both a season low for him and the second-worst grade given to an offensive player in the game.
Hale Hentges- There was one big positive and one big negative play for the UDFA out of Alabama in this one. Hentges hauled in the first reception of his career on a tight end screen that gained 13 yards and set the Redskins up with a first down inside the red zone on their second scoring drive. On the downside, he also gave up a turnover-inducing sack-fumble to Danielle Hunter on the team’s first possession of the game.
Vernon Davis- VD was held out for the fourth consecutive game because of the concussion he suffered in Week 4 against the Giants. He has now missed only one fewer game this year than he has in his last ten seasons combined (5).
|Running Backs (5 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Adrian Peterson *||31||72%|
|Craig Reynolds||ST Only||0%|
Adrian Peterson- Adrian Peterson gutted it out and played on a season-high 72% of the snaps despite suffering both a low and a high ankle sprain just four days prior to the game. In fact, that 72% rate represented his highest playing-time clip since Week 9 of the 2017 season (77% with Arizona at San Francisco). Not only did AP play a lot against his former team, he had one of his best games of the year against them.
All Day toted the rock 14 times and turned those carries into 76 yards and 2 first downs. He forced 3 missed tackles and gained 66 of his 76 yards after contact. His YPC and after-contact averages of 5.43 and 4.71 were his best marks since Week 13 of last season (10.89 and 10.67 at Philadelphia).
His biggest gain of the day was a 29-yarder that was both the team’s longest play of the game and Peterson’s longest gain since his 90-yard TD in the aforementioned Eagles game. With that run he passed both Jerome Bettis and LaDainian Tomlinson and moved into sixth place on the all-time rushing yardage leaderboard (13,701). AP is now just 400 rushing yards behind Curtis Martin who currently sits in fifth place in league history, and as long as Bill Callahan is in charge he should have no problem hitting that mark.
Peterson has gotten at least 14 carries and has run for 75-plus yards in all three games since Gruden was fired and Callahan took over. Of his 383 rushing yards this season, 275 of them have been racked up in that stretch (71.8%).
AD was targeted twice on Thursday night and caught both passes, which marks the second time he went 2-for-2 through the air in the last three weeks. His catches went for 6 and 21 yards, with the 21-yarder counting as his longest reception since a 24-yard grab against another former team in the Saints (Week 5 of last season). Peterson’s 27 receiving yards for this week’s game was also his highest such total since he put up 36 yards in that 2018 contest against the Saints.
In all, he gained 103 yards from scrimmage against the Vikings, which marks the second time he’s topped the 100-yard mark this year and the seventh game in which he’s done it as a Redskin, more than every other player on the team combined in that span (Terry McLaurin twice, Chris Thompson twice and Maurice Harris once). Speaking of yards from scrimmage, Peterson is 321 yards away from passing Terrell Owens (16,185) and Tony Dorsett (16,293 / no relation) and moving into 12th place in NFL history.
Wendell Smallwood- Smallwood was out there for a dozen snaps with the offense, but failed to flash the way he did against the 49ers earlier in the week.
He lost two yards on a 2nd-and-2 run on the last play of the first quarter. He didn’t get another carry until the final play of the night; he gained 11 yards and picked up a first down on the clock-killing run.
The fourth-year back was targeted twice on the night, with both looks coming on third-and-long plays. He converted the first one with an 11-yard grab on a 3rd-and-11 despite being popped by Xavier Rhodes. His next target came on a screen pass from a concussed Case Keenum, but the throw was defended by Eric Kendricks.
Smallwood is currently averaging career highs in yards per carry (4.5), yards per reception (10.4) and yards per target (8.7).
Michael Burton- Burton got 8 snaps with the offense in this one. Unlike last week when the team ran on every play he was in for, Washington actually passed on half of his snaps (4-of-8).
Chris Thompson- Chris Thompson’s turf toe kept him sideline for a second straight game. Bill Callahan said that he was hopeful CT would be able to return for the Week 9 matchup with the Bills. Thompson still ranks in the top ten among all running backs in receptions (27, 10th), receiving yards (276, 6th), yards per reception (10.2, 3rd), yards per target (7.26, 6th) and yards per route run (2.09, 4th).
Craig Reynolds- Craig Reynolds played in what was his second career game after making his debut last week, but like against the 49ers, he only got action on special teams.
Redskins Rushing- Peterson and Smallwood combined to run the ball 16 times for 85 yards (5.31 YPC), 3 first downs and no touchdowns. Those were the team’s lowest attempt, yardage and first down figures in the last four games, but the 5.31-yard average was their second-best clip of the season.
The only time they posted a better average was in the game against the Patriots (7.25 YPC), but that number was heavily skewed by Steven Sims’ 65-yard touchdown run (4.21 YPC without it). This game was not too unlike that one, in that if you took away the Skins’ two longest rushes (12.5% of their carries) you’d be removing just shy of half of their yardage (42-of-85 yards) and cutting their average from 5.31 all the way down to 3.0.
They did, however, produce a solid 62.5% success rate and gained five-plus yards just as often as they gained less than three yards (five each).
|Offensive Line (9 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Ereck Flowers *||43||100%|
|Morgan Moses *||43||100%|
|Donald Penn *||43||100%|
|Chase Roullier *||43||100%|
|Brandon Scherff *||43||100%|
|Geron Christian||ST Only||0%|
|Ross Pierschbacher||ST Only||0%|
Offensive Line (Team)- The team lost yards on both of their short-yardage carries (1 to 3 yards to go) and only averaged 0.69 yards before contact per carry. So, this would seem to be a case where the running backs, primarily Adrian Peterson, were making the O-line look better and not vice versa.
Things weren’t much better in pass protection. Washington’s quarterbacks were pressured on 36% of their dropbacks, which was the second-highest pressure rate against the team since Week 4 (40% vs New England in Week 5). The 4 sacks allowed were tied for the second most they’ve given up all season (6 vs. New England).
Two flags were thrown against Redskin O-linemen, but both penalties were declined. This was just the second time in 2019 that not a single Washington offensive lineman was charged with an accepted penalty (Week 6 at Miami). If you exclude those two contests, the line as a group is averaging 3.33 infractions per game.
Donald Penn- Penn didn’t play terribly overall, but his performance was a bit tainted by a couple of bad plays.
He was only officially credited with giving up a hurry, but two defenders who he was blocking were actually awarded sacks. Everson Griffen, who Penn was assigned to, split a sack with Anthony Barr on one of those plays. Later in the game, Vike’s D-end Ifeadi Odenigbo took seven seconds to sack a scrambling Dwayne Haskins (Haskins was rightfully charged with this one), but that was again Penn’s man, and he was flagged for holding him prior to the sack (declined).
Ereck Flowers- Flowers finally gave up a sack after going eight straight games without one. In fact, for good measure and since it had been so long, he actually allowed two of them.
Case Keenum got concussed and fumbled the ball on the first of those, but Flowers was at least there to recover the ball (3rd career FR). The loss on the second-down play moved the Redskins from the Minnesota 5-yard line back to the 12. Then, later in the night, he let a blitzing Anthony Barr shoot past him for another sack, with this one being on Dwayne Haskins.
His 43.8 Pro Football Focus grade ranked dead last among all Washington offensive players and was his second-lowest rating of the year.
Flowers’ transition to left guard has gone smoother than just about anyone anticipated, but we need to realize that he’s not playing at a Pro Bowl level right now, either. He’s committed 5 penalties (1 declined) and allowed 14 pressures so far this year.
Chase Roullier- Chase Roullier bounced back from something of a subpar showing against the 49ers and had a nearly mistake-free game on Thursday night. He did surrender one hurry, but that was the only real blemish to his name. Roullier earned a 72.2 grade from PFF for the game, which was the second-best mark of his career (78.5 in Week 11 of 2017 at New Orleans).
Brandon Scherff- This was probably Brandon Scherff’s best game of the year. He did get flagged for holding for the fifth time this season, but the penalty was declined because the third-down play ended with an incomplete pass anyways.
That, however, was the only mark against the two-time Pro Bowler in this one. He did not allow a single pressure of any kind for the third straight week and for the fourth time overall in 2019. Scherff also posted a game and personal season high 92.3 PFF grade.
He ranks fifth among all qualifying guards with a season-long 80.9 PFF grade, sits in third at the position with a 98.7 pass-blocking-efficiency score and is only behind Quenton Nelson in run-blocking grade (83.7).
Morgan Moses- The big right tackle out of UVA managed to avoid committing a single penalty for just the third time this year. Moses was charged with surrendering a hurry and a QB hit, but he also bears some responsibility for not helping tight end Hale Hentges to block Danielle Hunter on his sack-fumble. His 73.3 PFF grade for the game represents his best such mark since Week 6 of last season (73.7 vs. Carolina).
Tony Bergstrom- Bergstrom worked as an extra offensive lineman on four snaps. All four plays were 1st-and-10 runs by Adrian Peterson. AP gained 4, 29, 4 and 5 yards on those carries, which was good for a total of 42 yards and a 10.5 YPC average. Basically half of the team’s rushing yards (42-of-85) came on the four plays that Bergstrom was in for.
Geron Christian- Bergstrom replaced Geron Christian in the roles of the Skins’ extra offensive lineman. Christian had been used as a sixth O-lineman in each of the previous four weeks and in five of the team’s other seven games. He played exclusively on special teams in this week’s contest.
Other Offensive Linemen- Wes Martin hasn’t practiced in three weeks and was out again with a chest injury. Fellow rookie Ross Pierschbacher only saw the field on special teams. He’s suited up for each of the last two weeks, but has yet to play on offense.
ALL OFFENSIVE PLAYERS
|All Offensive Players (25 Players)|
|Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %||Player (* - starter)||Snaps||Snap %|
|Ereck Flowers *||43||100%||Wes Martin||12||28%|
|Morgan Moses *||43||100%||Kelvin Harmon||11||26%|
|Donald Penn *||43||100%||Michael Burton||8||19%|
|Chase Roullier *||43||100%||Tony Bergstrom||4||9%|
|Brandon Scherff *||43||100%||Steven Sims||1||2%|
|Terry McLaurin *||40||93%||Geron Christian||ST Only||0%|
|Paul Richardson *||33||77%||Ross Pierschbacher||ST Only||0%|
|Jeremy Sprinkle *||33||77%||Craig Reynolds||ST Only||0%|
|Adrian Peterson *||31||72%||Vernon Davis||Inactive||N/A|
|Case Keenum *||29||67%||Wes Martin||Inactive||N/A|
|Trey Quinn||24||56%||Colt McCoy||Inactive||N/A|
|Hale Hentges *||18||42%||Chris Thompson||Inactive||N/A|
*All statistics are courtesy of Air Yards, ESPN, Football Outsiders, NBC Sports, NFL.com, NFL Gamebooks, Pro Football Focus, Pro Football Reference, Redskins.com, Sports Info Solutions and The Washington Post*
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