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Need to Know: Is Garçon as good as Bryant?

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Need to Know: Is Garçon as good as Bryant?

Here is what you need to know on this Wednesday, October 9, four days before the Redskins visit the Cowboys on Sunday night.

Nickel coverage

Five things you need to know about the Redskins-Cowboys matchup on Sunday night.

1. After being in the hole all season, the Redskins have managed to work their way back up to even in turnover ratio. They have seven takeaways (2 INT, 5 fumble recoveries) and have given it away seven times (4 INT, 3 fumbles lost). The Cowboys are a plus-three in turnover ratio. Of course, it’s not always quantity, it’s often a matter of when the turnovers occur. Tony Romo’s late interception against Denver was very costly and a Robert Griffin III fumble against the Lions was damaging to the Redskins’ chances in that game.

2. Romo is averaging 285.0 passing yards per game and Griffin is just inches behind him at 284.8 (numbers are net, including yards lost due to sacks). The difference is that Dallas’ offense is designed for a lot of passing and the Redskins’ is not. In 2012 the Cowboys averaged 41.1 passes per game and the Redskins averaged 27.6. This year it’s Washington with more attempts at 42.5 per game while Romo has averaged 37.6.

3. The Cowboys start their average drive on their own 28 yard line while the Redskins start at the 23. More goes into than this but Dallas is averaging almost more yards per kickoff return than the Redskins, 27.0 yards to 20.3. Last year the Redskins averaged 23.5 yards per kickoff return. Anyone miss Danny Smith yet?

4. Everyone knows that Dez Bryant has been a beast for the Cowboys this year but he’s tied for 16th in the NFL with 29 receptions and 10th in yards with 423. It would not be shocking if the best receiver on the field on Sunday night turns out to be Pierre Garçon, who has the same number of catches as Bryant having played in one fewer game. The Redskins receiver is averaging  84.8 yards per game while Bryant is averaging 84.6.

5. The early-week talk around Redskins circles is that they should run the ball and control the clock to keep Romo, Bryant, and company off the field. But that could be easier said than done. Dallas has allowed 3.8 yards per rushing attempt, 13th in the league. It may be better to attack through the air as they are giving up 8.2 yards per pass attempt, 25th in the NFL.

Stat of the day

—If it seems like Alfred Morris is getting stonewalled a lot more this year than the he was last season, it’s because he is. In 2012 one in every 5.8 rushing attempts for Morris resulted in a gain of zero yards or a loss of yardage. So far this year he is getting zero or negative yards every 4.6 carries, about 20 percen more frequently.

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Timeline

—Former Redskins long snapper and current Comcast SportsNet NFL analyst Trevor Matich was born on this date in 1961.

—Days until: Redskins @ Cowboys 4; Bears @ Redskins 11; Redskins @ Broncos 18

—Today’s schedule: Player availability 11:15; Practice 1:00 (open to media for first 30 minutes); After practice (approx. 3:00) news conferences from Robert Griffin III and Mike Shanahan.

In case you missed it

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Redskins' Doug Williams presents a special jersey to family of Jim Vance

Redskins' Doug Williams presents a special jersey to family of Jim Vance

On July 22, legendary D.C. broadcaster Jim Vance died at the age of 75.

During the first day of training camp on Thursday, Washington Redskins VP of player personnel Doug Williams, presented NBC4 sports reporter Carol Maloney with a gift for Vance's family.

RELATED: REMEMBERING JIM VANCE

The gesture by the Redskins was one filled with much respect for the award-winning anchor.

Vance was a staple for many D.C. locals, being a full-time anchor since 1972 for NBC4. 

Last summer, Vance revealed he had been diagnosed with cancer but never stopped working. 

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LIVE Redskins training camp practice report: Day 1

LIVE Redskins training camp practice report: Day 1

RICHMOND—The Redskins took the field for their first practice of the season. Jordan Reed is missing as was the usual stifling heat at the Bon Secours training center.It's warm but the humidity is down from the normal late-July sauna here. 

Here are my observations from practice as it unfolds. Come back and refresh often for the latest:

—Jamison Crowder still appears to be the No. 1 punt returner. Also fielding kicks off of the leg of Tress Way were Maurice Harris, Chris Thompson, and Will Blackmon. 

—The Redskins are practicing without pads per collective bargaining rules. A few are wearing shells. 

—New tight end EJ Bibbs just introduced himself to Vernon Davis as they were getting ready for some individual drills. Reminds me of a few year ago when a just acquired player was participating in stretching and they brought his contract out onto the field for him to sign. He wouldn’t have been able to practice otherwise. 

—Kirk Cousins just acknowledged a fan lined up near the sideline. ‘How’s it going, Derrick?” Derrick’s friends were properly impressed. 

—Maurice Harris showed good form in catching a Cousins pass over the middle against no defense. Nothing spectacular but but a good job reaching forward to pull in a pass that was ahead of him. 

—Harris with another nice catch, this time guarded over the middle by Will Blackmon. He is off to a good start in competing for playing time.

—Torian Gray is admonishing his defensive backs to “wake up, wake up.” On one rep he wanted Tevin Homer to “drive to the ball.”

—It looked like Josh Doctson had a step on Bashaud Breeland on a deep pass but the CB recovered and knocked the pass away. 

—A few plays later Doctson got deep again, this time against Quinton Dunbar. This time the CB couldn’t catch up and Doctson hauled in the pass.

—In the early going in 11 on 11, Will Compton and Mason Foster are the inside LBs with the first team and Joey Mbu is at nose tackle. Both situations could change over the course of the next few weeks. 

—Nice cut by Keith Marshall on a run around right end. He planted his foot and cut upfield with some serious burst. He’s a dark horse when it comes to making the roster but I’m keeping an eye on him. 

—Cousins with a dart to Terrelle Pryor along the sideline. A sharp and accurate throw. 

—Rain is approaching but it should hold off until practice is over. Meanwhile, the clouds and breeze are cooling things down. Nobody is complaining.  

—Pryor was assigned to block Josh Norman on a running play. Norman made a business decision not to contest the block and there was light contact as Norman backed down the field.

—Rookie Robert Davis made a solid back-shoulder catch on the sideline. I’m not sure if Colt McCoy intended for the pass to be back shoulder but that was where it went and Davis reached to make the grab. 

—What was that? Nate Sudfeld heaved one downfield to nobody in particular. Kendall Fuller got an easy interception, his second of the day. 

—That is from Richmond for today. Come on back tomorrow, we’ll do it again.