After so many years of disappointment, believe it or not, I can stay pretty positive about the Redskins. That usually lasts until week eight or nine.
When your head coach calls the Week 9 game a “must-win game,” what do you do when it becomes a “didn’t-win game”?
Yeah, I’m not sure. Unfortunately, I don’t think the Redskins are quite sure either.
After so many years of disappointment, believe it or not, I usually can stay pretty positive. Before the first game of the season, there’s always a part of me that’s all, “This year is our year, guys!” Then, as we lose the first couple of games, I can still think positively: “Well, if we win the rest of the division games this season, we can still win the division!” And then when that doesn’t work, there’s that last bit of hope when I say, “OK, it’s not ideal. But if we can win this game and then win the rest of the games this season, then maybe, just maybe, we can grab one of those wildcard spots.”
And finally, usually around week eight or nine, reality finally sets in, and I finally admit, “Welp, it’s time to go for that high draft pick next year” Oh wait, we won’t even have that! We gave up our first round pick for RGIII! Well, maybe next year? We gave that up, too! Sigh.
As Shanny said, the game against Carolina was a “must-win game,” and the Redskins lost Sunday in ugly fashion, 21-13, dropping us to a 3-6 record. There was little to cheer about in Sunday’s game (and few to cheer–did you all see how empty FedEx was?). We had thirteen penalties for 97 yards. We were three for fifteen on third-down conversions. Granted, we were three for five on fourth down, but one of those missed opportunities was in the red zone after a long drive. Then there were the same issues that have plagued us all season long: a weak secondary, a porous offensive line, dropped passes, and injuries. And to top it all off, Pro Bowl RB Brian Mitchell called the Redskins a “terrible team” and a “terrible franchise.” True, but it still stings a little.
So, long story short, we probably won’t be heading to the playoffs. And for a fan base that has continually said, “Give them one more year,” it appears that fans have finally had the last straw. In the past, we’ve targeted our quarterback (McNabb! Grossman! Campbell!), our head coach (Zorn!), and always our owner (but we haven’t figured out how to handle that one yet). This year, no one on the coaching staff is safe from the angry fans. Defensive Coordinator Jim Haslett? He must go! Offensive Coordinator Kyle Shanahan? He should go! Special Teams Coach Danny Smith? Outta here! Head Coach Mike Shanahan? Off with him too!
But I must say, it is shockingly disappointing when your head coach has seemingly given up on the team when he says postgame that it is time to “evaluate” for the rest of the season. The fans may know in their heart of hearts that post-season play probably isn’t in the cards, but aren’t head coaches supposed to, like, inspire everyone with pep talks and stuff? He says that his quotes were misinterpreted, but it sure did sound like he was giving up. I just hope his evaluation period includes some self-evaluation.
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- There aren’t a lot of highlights from Sunday’s game. But the throwback jerseys looked nice, right guys? At least they looked better than Pittsburgh’s last week. I will admit, though, that Ben Rothlisberger looked mighty fine in stripes.
- At least all of the other NFC East teams lost this week. Not that that really helps us at this point, but I’ll take it. Especially when five of our seven games left in the “evaluation time” are division rivals.
- I don’t know what else nice to say—it was a pretty afternoon?
- When DeAngelo Hall was ejected last week for his foolish behavior, I thought we’d catch a break this week, because I assumed he’d be suspended for at least a game. Unfortunately, it turns out the NFL punished the Redskins by NOT suspending him. Well played, Goodell, well played.
- Hey refs, when you blow your whistle, that typically means the play is over. And by typically, I mean ALWAYS. I know we didn’t deserve to beat Carolina, but Carolina also didn’t deserve that DeAngelo Williams TD run. How many people want the replacement refs back? Jkjkjkjk!
- Hey RGIII, helicopter leaps are not cool. You know what is cool? Sliding!
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Next week: BYE WEEK!
(Or as I like to call it, “The one Sunday during football season where the Redskins definitely will not make me cry.”)