Week 9 Postgame: Upset at CenturyLink

an image of The Redskins upset at CenturyLink Field
When The Redskins absolutely had to get it done, they got it done!

(Image credit: Ryan Lejbak©. No changes have been made.)

 

Yesterday The Washington Redskins went on The Road and beat the Seattle Seahawks in front of 68,927 hostile fans in dramatic fashion, 17-14.

This Road Win shocked ’em all!  Redskins Fans, Seahawks fans, casual football fans, and all of the Football Press, both local and National.

But it didn’t shock this Diehard.  No sir!  The Washington Redskins went up to Seattle and did exactly what I thought they’d do: Win the football game.  The only thing I got wrong was the score (I predicted 27-24).

My point isn’t that I have a crystal ball hidden in the man cave.  It’s that this Program has progressed to the point where Washington can beat anyone, anywhere, under any circumstances.




I know that’s a bold statement, but I believe it’s true.  The Skins have an impressive mix of youth & Veteran Leadership that has proven to be effective.

To wit, the Seahawks NEVER lose at CenturyLink Field.  In fact, in the last 5 years, they had only been beaten 6 times before Kickoff yesterday.  Thier record in that span?  37-6.

In fact, the DC Sports Bog says it best:

I can’t believe that team — with that offensive line and that injury list — became just the seventh team to win a game in Seattle since 2012. The Seahawks were 37-6 at home in that span. The losses came against four division opponents, plus a 12-4 Dallas team and a 15-1 Carolina team. I can’t believe the Redskins just joined that list.

Further:

I can’t believe the Redskins are the only NFL road team with a winning record in regular-season games at CenturyLink Field since 2002.

And I really, really, really can’t believe that the Redskins are 4-0 at CenturyLink Field in that span.

Pretty impressive stuff.

But it wasn’t all roses.  Let’s look at some of the good and the bad.

 

What I Liked

Obviously, I liked the Win!  And I’ve said as much here:

 -We have a deeper team than they do (actually, we’re deeper than most NFL Teams)

-It’s a significant lift getting the Win after the near miss in KC. Now The Team knows they can beat anybody

-Kirk came through when we needed it most. That’s what Winning teams do.

-That head-to-head Victory may pay big dividends down the road too

 

But 3 things I wanna point out

1) It may be time to acknowledge that we’re a Defensive Team this season.  That unit is our strength.

2) Josh Doctson gets MAJOR PROPS!!  He paid us back for KC, because that catch Won us the ballgame!

3) Interestingly enough, all of our Wins this year are against West Coast teams.  Isn’t that strange?


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and here:

Okay, that last one was gratuitous!  But it still holds that the fellas got it done through sheer grit and determination.

And pluck.

That’s why I believed Washington would Win beforehand, and that’s why I’m so happy to have been proven right.

 

What I Didn’t Like

After a ballgame like this, it’s hard to be critical.

The way I see it, nitpicking such a Big Win is petty and ungrateful.

Very rarely do things go perfectly in an NFL game.  When two clubs with world class athletes compete to Win a contest, rarely is one group going to dominate the other.  I understand that.

However, in this contest I do have a gripe or two.

1)The Offense is stalling too often with The Lead.

Seattle is a tough opponent, and they are hard to score against.

But Jay Gruden (in my view) takes his foot off the gas and allows the Offense to coast with a Lead too often.

I even noted during the game that the magic number was 17 (even scoring two Touchdowns would have been all but insurmountable for the Seahawks).

And in the 2nd Half, I got the feeling the Offense was playing not to lose.

I want to see Jay and Kirk attack and finish off a wounded foe, not let them hang around.  That can come back to bite you.



2) Kirk held the ball too long.

We all know the deal: The Team is beat up, particularly along The Offensive Line.

Knowing that, it bothered me to watch Kirk sit in The Pocket and continue to hold The Ball until he was sacked.

There’s no question that Seattle had The Receivers covered on several occasions.  And sure there may have also been screw ups (wrong Routes run, missed Blocking Assignments, et cetera).

But there were way too many times Cousins just sat on The Ball instead of unloading it.

Look, if the Intended Receiver was covered on 2nd & 10, just heave The Football out of bounds!  3rd & 10 is a much more manageable down than taking a Sack that leads to 3rd & 17.

It drove me crazy how often that scenario came to pass!

Obviously, the patchwork Line was going to have issues in Pass Protection.  But it seemed that Kirk Cousins (or Jay Gruden in The Playcalling) didn’t help matters with slow developing Plays.

I do acknowledge that part of the issue was Seattle knowing that The Skins wanted to Quick Pass and schemed to prevent it.

But if that was indeed the case, then get rid of The Football!  To watch Kirk sit there over and over, only to take a sack was frustrating in the extreme.

Although things did work out well in the end.

My concern going forward is that one of these Sundays, it may not.

 

 

The good news is that The Washington Redskins pulled off the upset at CenturyLink Field over a Division Leader, when no one gave them a chance to Win.

Not only did that help to save such a promising season, it also validated this Team as being a squad worthy of playing January football.

That’s still a long way off yet.  However, with more performances like yesterday’s, seeing Washington in The Postseason won’t be a longshot.

It’s days like Sunday that make me proud to be a Diehard.

 



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