Here one fact about each team the Redskins will face in 2012. Here are the teams scheduled in Weeks 1-8.@ SaintsIts a good thing for the Saints that Drew Brees leads a potent offense. New Orleans was 24thin the league in yards allowed and got just 16 takeaways, 31stin the NFL. When they won the Super Bowl in 2009 they had 39 takeaways during the regular season.@ RamsRunning back Stephen Jackson is working on a streak of seven straight seasons with over 1000 yards rushing. He has played pretty well against in six games against the Redskins, gaining an even 500 yards on 110 carries.BengalsEveryone points to Andy Dalton as the reason the Bengals went from 4-12 in 2010 to 9-7 and a playoff berth last year. But they got pretty good QB play from Carson Palmer in 10. The big difference was the defense. They improved from 24thin points allowed to ninth and went from 15thin yards allowed to seventh.@ BucsPerhaps it was unfair that they fired Raheem Morris as their head coach last year after going 10-6 and just missing the playoffs in 2010 but it was truly ugly at the end in Tampa Bay. After a 3-1 start the Bucs went 1-11. In those final 11 games they gave up more than 30 points eight times. Opponents hung up over 40 on them four times in that stretch, including three of the last four.FalconsQuarterback Matt Ryan has started at least nine game won by the Falcons in each of his four seasons in the NFL. They won 11 in his rookie 2008 season, turning things around from a miserable 4-12 performance the previous season.VikingsWhen the Redskins and Vikings met in Week 16 at FedEx Field, Minnesota put up 33 points despite losing both starting quarterback Christian Ponder and All-World running back Adrian Peterson to injuries during the game. That was their second-highest point total of the season. The Vikings gave up more than the 26 points the Redskins scored nine times last year.@ GiantsNone of the 45 previous Super Bowl champs had been outscored during the regular season but the 2011 Giants gave up 400 points and scored 394 last year. They turned it around in style, outscoring its for playoff opponents 102-56@ SteelersIt looked like the Steelers were teetering on the brink after Week 9 when they lost to the Ravens for the second time to fall to 6-3. But they turned it on after that, winning six of their last seven. They didnt allow the opposition to get to double-digit points in five of their six games after the bye.
GLENDALE, AZ—The Redskins went into today’s game against the Cardinals somewhat banged up and they exit with a couple of additional injury concerns in the form of concussions.
Center Spencer Long left the game in the second quarter. Initially it was announced that he had been evaluated for a concussion but that he had been cleared. But after halftime the word came down that he had been retested and it was determined that he does have a concussion. Long has entered the concussion protocol.
Veteran John Sullivan, picked up earlier this season when Kory Lichtensteiger went on injured reserve, filled in a center the rest of the way. He is a capable fill-in but if Long is out he would be the only available center. The Redskins might have to sign a center if it looks like Long will be out of action against the Eagles.
In the fourth quarter safety Will Blackmon left the game. According to Redskins coach Jay Gruden he was being evaluated for a concussion and a stinger. His exact status is unknown. Gruden will give more information during a conference call with reporters on Monday.
GLENDALE, AZ—The Redskins had a couple of chances to stop what would eventually turn into the Cardinals’ game-clinching drive in the fourth quarter. The first one came when they went for it on fourth and one at their own 34. It was a gutsy call by Arizona coach Bruce Arians and David Johnson make him look smart by popping off a 14-yard run.
The Cards earned that one. But it looked as though they got something of a gift a few plays later when Josh Norman was flagged holding receiver Larry Fitzgerald. It was a borderline call, granting Arizona a gift third and five conversion. Two plays later Carson Palmer went in for the kill, throwing a 42-yard touchdown pass to J.J. Nelson.
On the field, Norman seemed to be none too pleased with the penalty flag. He said after the game that he thinks that Fitzgerald may have stolen a flag.
“He [Fitzgerald] was within five yards. Larry is a wily vet,” said Norman. “I'd been doing it all game, kind of . . . He breaks out and I go for the ball and the flag got thrown. We'd like to see that not happen in that situation because there was some good position, some good leverage. And a flag came out.
“It is what it is. You can't blame a call on that, blame a call on this. It's whatever, man.”
Norman is right. The Redskins blew plenty of chances to take control of the game and the blame can be spread around on both sides of the ball. But the flag will loom large as the Redskins try to shake off this loss and get ready for the Eagles next week.