Against the Niners, Clinton Portis turned a cartwheel after scoring a rushing touchdown. Today, he turned one while in the process of scoring the touch, going in the air and heels over head into the end zone.
Redskins 17-7. This sounds hauntingly familiar—a 10-point fourth-quarter lead. The defense needs to make a play or at least stuff them Rams three and out and give the offense a chance to put this one away.
I guess that hand transplant worked out OK for Robert Royal.
Chris Clemons is a QB-seeking machine. Had Fitzpatrick been able to scoot to a first down on that Rams series after the Washington TD, it gives the Rams some life. But Clemons chased him down and made the stop and, although Bryan Barker got off a booming punt that has the Redskins pinned back, Washington has a chance to run out a good chunk of the 11:59 remaining.
I wouldn’t define four seconds as “good chunk”. A disastrous safety by Brunell.
Turnabout is fair play as the Rams fumble it back after the free kick. That one was on Fitzpatrick as much as the other one was on Brunell. It looked for a second here like the Rams were going to recover, but the ball squirted by Jackson and Renaldo Wynn got the recovery. It’s time to go in for the kill.
Perfect. About six minutes burned off of the clock and a touchdown. This is the way that this offense is supposed to work with the opposing defense getting worn out and the Redskins line dishing out the punishment on the way to the end zone.
Of course, this offensive philosophy would work great every week if the Redskins played the Rams defense every week.
Carlos Rogers has arrived. A key interception doesn’t quite seal the deal, but it gives the Washington offense, riding the back of one Rock Cartwright, a chance to do so.
As should be expected when a team goes 8-7-1, there were plenty of good moments and a lot of frustrating times during the Redskins’ 2016 season. Over the next couple of weeks, Redskins Insiders Rich Tandler and JP Finlay will take detailed looks at the 10 best plays of 2016 and, to present a more complete picture of the season, the 10 worst.
No. 6 worst play of 2016
Redskins at Cardinals Week 13
3:47 left in Q4, Cardinals ball at their own 34, 4th and 1, Cardinals leading 24-23
David Johnson up the middle to ARZ 48 for 14 yards (Josh Norman).
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Tandler: What's worse than a punch in the gut? A gut punch you don't see coming. The Redskins had pulled to within a point with plenty of time left to get a winning score—if the defense could get a stop. When Bruce Arians sent out his offense on fourth and one, the Redskins had to watch for Carson Palmer to try to draw them offside. In fact, Joe Barry told the Redskins not to expect a snap and to be sure not the jump. But they did snap the ball and Johnson ran for the easiest 14 yards up the gut you’ll ever see. The air was out of the Redskins’ comeback balloon and Palmer all but put it away a few plays later with a 42-yard TD pass to J.J. Nelson.
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Finlay: This is not the first 4th Down conversion on our list of bad plays, but perhaps the most important one. Washington desperately needed this stop, and the defense thought they had it on the 3rd down play prior. Only Arians did not flinch about going for it, much to Barry's surprise, and the 'Skins D had no shot at Johnson. This play illustrated the weakness of Washington's defensive front perhaps better than any other run all season.
10 best plays countdown
10 worst plays countdown
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Kirk Cousins' price tag just moved even higher with the news that he will replace Matt Ryan in the Pro Bowl. ESPN's John Keim reported the roster move first.
Ryan's Atlanta Falcons advanced to the Super Bowl on Sunday with a 44-21 dismantling of the Green Bay Packers. That victory means Ryan will not be available for the Pro Bowl, held this Sunday in Orlando. Cousins got his spot as an alternate.
Cousins gets the spot deservedly. This season he passed for 4,917 yards, completing 67 percent of his passes and throwing 25 TDs to 12 INTs. In two seasons since being named starter for the Redskins, Cousins has thrown for more than 9,000 yards.
The Pro Bowl nod for Cousins will only make the Redskins pending contract talks that much tougher. The quarterback played in 2016 under the franchise tag, which netted him nearly $20 million. This season Washington could again place Cousins on the franchise tag, with a price tag around $24 million. Both sides can still work for a long-term deal, though the value of that contract would likely soar past $100 million and closer to $120 million.
Some questions exist within the Redskins organization if that is too much money devoted to one player, even if it is a Pro Bowl quarterback.
It's fitting that Cousins is subbing in for Ryan, who has found much success playing under Falcons offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan. All signs points to Shanahan taking over as the 49ers head coach after the Super Bowl, and a report emerged that San Francisco would make a strong push to obtain Cousins, either in free agency or via trade.
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Want more Redskins? Check out @JPFinlayCSN for live updates or click here for the #RedskinsTalk Podcast on iTunes, here for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!