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Grading the Redskins: Forbath remains perfect


Grading the Redskins: Forbath remains perfect

Special teams

Grade vs. Cowboys: B+

Comment: The field goal unit was pressed into duty only one time Thursday, and the call didn’t come until late in the fourth quarter of a game that was in jeopardy of slipping away.

But first-year kicker Kai Forbath delivered with the cool and calm of a seasoned veteran. With the Redskins’ lead whittled to 35-28, the 25-year-old drilled a 48-yarder with 3:03 remaining to put the Redskins up by two scores.

“I told the guys that was probably the drive that saved our season,” Coach Mike Shanahan said after the game. Forbath added: “I went out and said, ‘We made this kick 10 times in warmups today. Why not make it now?’ And I hit it good to keep the streak going.”

Forbath is now 10 for 10 on field goals, including hitting six from 40-49 yards, to start his NFL career.

Forbath was also much better on kickoffs at Cowboys Stadium. After putting only one of his five kickoffs in the end zone against the Eagles, he took advantage of the semi-enclosed arena and put six of his seven kickoffs into the zone, including three for touchbacks. The hang time on his kicks also was much-improved, giving the coverage more time to get downfield. 

“I felt more comfortable being inside,” Forbath said. “And there was good footing on the turf, so I was more confident.”

As good as the Redskins were on special teams, there were a couple of miscues worth noting. For the second straight week, the punt team was flagged for a penalty – Perry Riley for illegal formation against the Eagles and Niles Paul for a false start vs. Dallas.

Also, Brandon Banks attempted to return a 64-yard punt in the first quarter after fielding the ball in the end zone. A curious decision, indeed, Banks was pushed out of bounds at the 7-yard line.

“Brandon is a smart guy and sometimes smart guys with a lot of ability try to make plays,” Shanahan said. “It’s tough with a guy who really believes he’s going to make plays. But we’re going to take a hard look at it and make sure that he makes the decisions in the best interest of our football team.”

Overall, though, special teams were a plus for the Redskins on an afternoon that featured little margin for error.

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Redskins' Josh Norman elected alternate NFLPA rep weeks after criticizing union

Redskins' Josh Norman elected alternate NFLPA rep weeks after criticizing union

NFL Players Association Executive Director DeMaurice Smith made a visit to Redskins Park today, and the team elected their union representatives.

Kedric Golston will serve another year as the team's liason to the union. Three alternates were elected as well: Kirk Cousins (an alternate last season), Will Compton and, surprisingly, Josh Norman. 

Norman was critical of Smith and the union in an ESPN piece in August. "[The NFL] is a dictatorship, and [NFLPA director] DeMaurice [Smith] is in cahoots with those guys," he claimed. 

The cornerback's election today marks what would appear to be a turn of events. 

"We always love to have veteran leadership as player representatives, and this team is no different with Kirk and Kedric returning," Smith told CSN Mid-Atlantic. "As for Josh, we love players who are both smart and passionate, and he, as well as the other players, fit that bill."

MORE REDSKINS: Cravens declared NFL Clutch Performer of the Week

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Josh Norman fined for rough play against Giants

Josh Norman fined for rough play against Giants

Nearly a week after the Redskins win over the Giants, news broke that Washington CB Josh Norman has been fined for roughness in the New York victory.

UPDATE: Per ProFootballTalk, the fine was for a fourth quarter hit on Sterling Shepard and being a repeat offender.

For much of the Redskins-Giants game, Norman covered Odell Beckham almost exclusively. Not many moments stand out for being particularly physical save for a play early in the game when Beckham jumped in the end zone. The motion took him above Norman, but rather than letting Beckham come down to the ground, the corner grabbed and carried the receiver for a few yards.

Norman was flagged for roughness on a hit against Giants receiver Sterling Shepard. It's likely that hit triggered the fine. It's also worth pointing out that referees gave Norman a specific warning before the game about rough play, so it's possible being flagged for roughness despite the warning made an impact in the league offices as well. 

There is one other physical moment that stands out from the Giants/Redskins matchup - when Beckham violently swung his helmet at the Giants' kicking net. Beckham got the worst of the altercation though as the net flew back at him and socked him in the face.

Expect many questions about the fine to come.