Week 4 Postgame: Just Missed

an image of a frustrated Redskins Fan
So close. So tantalizingly close!

(Image credit: Keith Allison©. No changes have been made.)

What a ballgame.

Last night, The Washington Redskins lost a heartbreaker to the Kasas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium.  And the worst part of the deal for me is I called the final score correctly.  But I had The Skins Winning it.  What sad, fucked up irony, as my buddy  pointed out:

 


Unbelievable.

Thing is, that’s the score I predicted in the Gameday Preview – but life can be ironic and cruel, right?

Ugh!

Enough of that.  On to the game.

And what a ballgame it was!  It was an epic back-n-forth battle of Titans, that ended with an Incomplete Pass shattering an entire metropolitan area’s conviction in this contest.



I know Doctson dropped the Game-Winning Pass.  Had he made that play, then we may be having a different conversation today.

But he didn’t make the play.  So we must deal with what is.  And heading into the Bye Week, The Washington Redskins are a 2-2 Football Team.  That’s the way things stand.

And there was plenty we learned about The Team from this contest, so let’s get into it.

 

What I Liked

Truth is, there was plenty to like in this one.

  • Washington started strong.  Upon Receiving the Opening Kickoff, The Team marched right down The Field and scored the game’s 1st Touchdown.  That impressed me, because I was concerned with how the fellas would respond to playing in such a tough environment.  But they showed their mettle early.  What’s more, they continued to go mano a mano with a strong team the entire night.  Good Stuff.
  • Kirk made plays.  When Kansas City put up the go-ahead Touchdown in the 2nd Half, Cousins immediately answered with a strike of his own to Vernon Davis to set up a Ryan Grant score in the 3rd Quarter.  And late in the game down a Field Goal, Cousins impressively marched The Team down The Field and made a money throw on 3rd Down to Josh Doctson.  Overall, Kirk played well, took care of The Ball (no Turnovers), and responded appropriately when necessary.  He did a great job Monday Night.
  • The Offensive Line Blocked well.  I don’t believe the Chiefs had a sack on Cousins all night.  Not only that, but The Redskins moved The Ball effectively on the ground, giving them a solid Rushing Attack that did pay dividends in The Play Action Passing Game.  Remember, this is an Opponent that has Justin Houston in its Front Seven (some call him the best Pass Rusher in The League).  And The Line kept him off Cousins all evening.  They’ve played well since that poor start to the year.  Props.
  • The Defense again played at a high level.  After last year’s disaster Defensively, this Redskins Team can bank on getting strong Defensive Play all year.  And we saw plenty of that Monday Night.  The Cheifs did begin moving The Ball in the 2nd Half better than they did in the 1st.  There’s no argument about that.  But this Defense time and again made a stand to keep them out of The Endzone & keep The Team in the ballgame.
    But what impressed me most was the Tackling.  As Redskins Fans know, Tackling had been an issue for years now.  But Monday Night it wasn’t.  And that kept KC from making those Big Plays that had been a staple of their Offense this year.  Even in a losing effort, these boys deserve credit for that.



What I Didn’t Like

Foremost among all the other stuff is the obvious: The Redskins lost.  And I don’t like watching The Washington Redskins lose.  That is a given but still needs to be said.  Besides that, here are some of the specific things I didn’t like:

  • Not making The Play.  You know what the difference is between an 11-5 team and a 6-10 team?  The Winning Team makes The Plays in the clutch when the game is in doubt.  And that’s why that Incomplete Pass hurts so much.  Because that play was the difference between Winning and losing the affair.  It’s as simple as that.  Really.  If you comb through a team’s schedule that lost 10 games, what you’ll find is a half dozen games where had-this-play-been-made, had-that-play-been-made the team in question would boast a Winning Record.
    The margin between Victory and defeat in The NFL is so thin that a handful of plays in most contests decide the outcome.  And this is a textbook case of that concept.  If The Skins are going to Contend on a high level THIS SEASON, those Game-Deciding Plays have to be made.
  • Keeping Kansas City in the game.  That start to the ballgame was fabulous!  And as much as Washington dominated that game in that 1st Quarter, they had an opportunity to knock KC out (AT HOME!), yet failed to capitalize on it.  Of course that’s easier said than done.  The Chiefs are a Super Bowl caliber team for goodness sake.  But that’s irrelevant.
    In competition, once you gain the advantage it’s imperative that you finish off your Opponent.  I feel like that opportunity presented itself early in the game & The Redskins didn’t capitalize on it.  Had they got KC down, say 20-0, do you think the Chiefs would’ve come back & Won the way The D was playing early?  No way.  Opportunity lost.
  • Leaving The Defense on The Field.  I put this one on The Offense.  Kansas City clearly worn our Defense down last night.  By the end, they were so tired that I considered it a small miracle that they kept the Chiefs outta The Endzone (on their 2nd to last Possession).  But that’s on The O.  They saw Redskins Defenders going down left & right.  In that circumstance, it is essential to eat some clock to give that Side Of The Ball time to recover.  In succeeding weeks, not allowing The Defense to rest in a tight ballgame could cost The Team again.  And that would be unacceptable.

 

It’s time to face the facts.  Everyone outside of DC expected the Chiefs to Win the game.  And they did.

However, it was the spirit in which the team competed that has me feeling better about the loss  Well, better than I have (about a loss) in a long ass time.

If we shore up a couple of areas (and get healthy), then this Washington Redskins Team could reach some pretty lofty heights.

At the very least, I’m convinced that they go to The Playoffs this year.  But with a tweak here & there, we could be discussing a lot more than just that.

Suffice it to say that The Bye Week comes at a great time for The Organization.  And at 2-2, all of this year’s possibilities remain within reach.

This year is gonna be a lotta fun.



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