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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.

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Need to Know: The early odds on what happens with Redskins and Cousins

Need to Know: The early odds on what happens with Redskins and Cousins

Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, January 19, 98 days before the NFL draft.

Timeline

Days until:
NFL franchise tag deadline 42
NFL free agency starts 50
First Sunday of 2017 season 235

The coordinator search and more

As noted above, we have 42 days until the deadline for the Redskins to put the franchise tag on quarterback Kirk Cousins. The immediate future of the franchise is contingent this situation being handled correctly by the organization. It’s time to turn the attention and the $100 in imaginary casino chips towards what might happen with Cousins as the process unfold. We will revisit this from time to time as the various deadlines approach so consider this the early odds.

Sign before the tag deadline, $5—This seems unlikely after his rather cold response to my question immediately following the season-ending loss to the Giants when he said, “The ball’s not in my court.” He indicated that it’s up to the Redskins to tag him. It doesn’t look like he and his agent will have much of an inclination to sit down to any serious negotiations before that happens.

Let him go into free agency, $5—Yes, I know that this is out there but it makes no sense to take the chance of the possibility that he could walk with zero compensation. While there might be some logic in finding out what Cousins would be worth in a true free market in order to establish the basis for a fair contract the risk of behind left empty-handed is just too great.

Tag and trade, $20—This also has been discussed by various media types as a possibility. It would involve giving Cousins the non-exclusive franchise tag, which would let him go out and negotiate a deal with another team. The Redskins could then match that offer or choose to get compensation. The CBA calls for compensation of two first-round picks although the two teams may negotiate something less. The most frequently suggested trade partner is the 49ers and their soon-to-be head coach Kyle Shanahan but there are probably around half a dozen teams, maybe more, who could be interested. If the Redskins don’t think they will ever sign Cousins long term this could be the way to go.

Tag and sign by July 15 deadline, $30—This may be a little low for this possibility. Perhaps if the other options are off the table he will consider that he is a perfect match for Jay Gruden’s offense and that he might not be such a good fit elsewhere. There also is the possibility of injury or, for whatever reason, Cousins having a subpar season. Those thoughts could spur him to instruct his agent to get the best deal he can get in Washington.

Tag and play the season on the tag, $40—Right now, this appears to be the mostly likely scenario. They can afford the $24 million cap hit and it would get them one more year of his services. However, the prospects for him remaining in a Redskins uniform for 2018 and beyond would be very cloudy.

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Stay up to date on the Redskins! Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page www.Facebook.com/RealRedskins and follow him on Twitter @Rich_TandlerCSN.

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3 of 4 Redskins named to Pro Bowl won't attend

3 of 4 Redskins named to Pro Bowl won't attend

Ryan Kerrigan, Jordan Reed and Brandon Scherff will skip next week's Pro Bowl in Orlando a team spokesman confirmed to CSN. All three players dealt with injuries late in the season, most notably Reed, and playing in the exhibition game is not in the cards. Trent Williams, however, is still slated to play in the game. 

Reed suffered a separated shoulder on Thanksgiving playing against the Dallas Cowboys. For the rest of the season, Reed played through significant pain and his production dipped.

Kerrigan played much of the season with an injured elbow and hurt his finger in the final game against the Giants. Scherff played with ankle pain and was listed on the injury report much of the season's final four games.

For Reed and Scherff, this year marked their first Pro Bowl. The recognition was deserved for both players, and shows that the guard and tight end are gaining national spotlight for their play.

Kerrigan played in the Pro Bowl following the 2012 season. He finished this year with 11 sacks, 2.5 short os his career high 13.5 in 2014. 

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