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Need to Know: First look at Redskins vs. Raiders

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Need to Know: First look at Redskins vs. Raiders

Here is what you need to know on this Wednesday, September 25, four days before the Redskins visit the Raiders.

Nickel coverage

Five things you need to know about the Raiders as they get ready to play the Redskins.

1. It was good news, bad news at quarterback for Oakland in their 37-21 Monday night loss to the Broncos. Terrelle Pryor had a solid night and he got it done with his arm, not with his legs. He completed 19 of 28 passes for 281 yards with one touchdown and no interceptions. That’s the good news. The bad news is that he suffered a concussion near the end of the game and his status for Sunday is uncertain. It is possible that he will miss some practice time and his availability for the game is in question. Matt Flynn, who lost out to Pryor in the preseason QB competition after being brought in to be the starter, will go against the Redskins if Pryor can’t.

2. If whoever is quarterbacking can get the ball to one of their wide receivers the Redskins could be in trouble. In particular, Denarius Moore is capable of taking it to the house at any time. He caught a 73-yard touchdown pass last night, grabbing Pryor’s pass deep over the middle, breaking away from a couple of would-be tacklers and turning on the speed to the end zone. The Redskins’ coverage and tackling issues could come back to bite them here.

3. Running back Darren McFadden had a better night throwing the ball than he did running it. He threw a 16-yard touchdown pass to Marcel Reece in the third quarter. That was a highlight play but he gets paid to run and he gained just nine yards on 12 carries. Yes, the Raiders did have to start passing fairly early but a 0.8 yards per carry average is not getting it done.

4. It’s not fair to judge the Raiders’ defense on what Manning did to them. They held the Colts to 21 points and had a fourth-quarter lead on the road before losing. And they did what an NFL team should do when they slapped around the Jaguars in Week 2, only allowing a field goal and a late, window dressing touchdown.

5. Among the spare parts they pieced together for their starting defense—10 of the 11 starters were with different NFL teams last season—is veteran DB Charles Woodson. He has been playing pretty well. The team does not have an interception.

Stat of the day

—The Redskins have given up 98 points this season. Last year through three games they had given up 101.

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Timeline

—Days until: Redskins @ Raiders 4; Redskins @ Cowboys 18; Bears @ Redskins 25

—Today’s schedule: Player availability 11:15, Practice 1:00 (media can observe first 30 minutes), Robert Griffin III and Mike Shanahan news conferences after practice (approx. 3:00) streamed on CSNwashington.com

Cofield talks about gaining confidence

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Is Kirk Cousins the most overrated player in the NFL? One analyst says so

Is Kirk Cousins the most overrated player in the NFL? One analyst says so

Pete Prisco of CBS Sports declared Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins the most overrated player in the NFL. Prisco repeatedly points out that while Cousins is a good quarterback, the notion that he should be paid like one of the best passers in the league is what makes him overrated.

From Prisco:

After having six 300-yard-plus passing games in his first 11 games, including two over 400, Cousins had one in the final five games last season as the Redskins pushed for a playoff spot. He had five touchdown passes and five interceptions in those games, going 2-3 as Washington folded. It wasn't all on him, but that's the point. I don't think he's a quarterback who rises above situations when the team isn't going right. I am not going to sit here and pan him as a starter. He has proven to be that, and a pretty good one. It's just that the perception is he's much better than that, which is why he's my most overrated player in the NFL in 2017.

Here's the problem with Prisco's login: Simple market economics. 

ROSTER BATTLES: Left guard | Tight end Nickel cornerback  | Inside linebacker | Running back

An argument can be made Cousins is a Top 10 passer. He's certainly in the top half of the league at the position. Few, if any, would argue Cousins is a Top 5 quarterback, but his contract situation forces him to be paid like he is. Those are the exact terms of the franchise tag, even before the 20 percent increase Washington paid this season to use a second-straight tag.  

Since the Redskins lost their window to sign their single-season passing yards record holder to a team-friendly deal last year, Cousins has leverage and the advantage of inflated QB salaries on his side.

That doesn't mean Cousins is overrated. 

If the threshold for being overrated is money, then Brock Osweiler wins this thing in a landslide. After the 2016 season in Houston, Osweiler seems unlikely to ever again be considered a starting QB in the NFL. He's due to be paid $18 million this fall and his offseason trade to the Browns will go down as the first-ever salary dump in NFL history. 

Is Cousins overpaid? Probably. That's the way contracts work in pro football. 

Is Cousins overrated? Probably not. He's thrown for more than 9,000 yards and completed about 68 percent of his passes over the last two seasons. 

There just aren't enough quarterbacks to go around in the NFL, and guys who can play the position get paid handsomely. That doesn't make Cousins overrated. 

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Lucky Whitehead a victim of mistaken identity according to police

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Lucky Whitehead a victim of mistaken identity according to police

It's been a confusing stretch for Cowboys receiver Lucky Whitehead. 

The charges against the Bealeton, Virginia native have now been dropped, after it was determined by Prince William County Police that Whitehead is not the man accused of shoplifting at a convenience store in Woodbridge, Virginia on June 22.

Here's the full statement released Tuesday:

Upon reviewing the June 22, 2017 arrest of an individual named “Rodney Darnell Whitehead, Jr.”, the police department is confident that the man charged with petit larceny, and who is subsequently being sought on an active warrant for failure to appear in court, is not Lucky Whitehead of the Dallas Cowboys. The man charged on the morning of June 22 was not in possession of identification at the time of the encounter; however, did verbally provide identifying information to officers, which included a name, date of birth, and social security number matching that of Rodney Darnell Whitehead, Jr.

Officers then checked this information through the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) database.The DMV photo on file was then used to compare to the man who was in custody. Officers acted in good faith that, at the time, the man in custody was the same man matching the information provided. At this point, the police department is also confident in confirming that Mr. Whitehead’s identify was falsely provided to police during the investigation.The police department is currently seeking the identity of the man involved in the incident. Since the identifying information provided by the arrestee during the investigation was apparently false, the police department is working with the Prince William County Commonwealth Attorney’s Office to clear Mr. Whitehead from this investigation.

The police department regrets the impact these events had on Mr. Whitehead and his family.

 

According to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, the Cowboys hadn't officially released Whitehead on Monday, despite reports to the contrary. 

 

Although it's looking like he still may be looking for a new home.

 

RELATED: COWBOYS WR LUCKY WHITEHEAD'S DOG REPORTEDLY HELD FOR RANSOM