Here is what you need to know on this Monday, September 14, six days before the Washington Redskins host the St. Louis Rams.
Notes and numbers vs. the Dolphins
—The Redskins ran 37 times for 161 yards. If you project that out over a full season that’s 592 rushing attempts for 2,576 yards. Jay Gruden and, especially, Scot McCloughan would be delighted if it actually turned out that way.
—Alfred Morris rushed 25 times for 121 yards. Last year he rushed for over 120 yards just once (125 vs. 49ers in week 12). Morris has not carried as many as 25 times in a game since 2013 against the Vikings (26, Week 10).
—The Redskins converted on 43 percent of their third down opportunities (6 of 14). Last year they converted on just 31.5 percent of their third downs.
—Last year the Redskins allowed both a kickoff return and a punt return for a touchdown. In their season opener last year they allowed a blocked punt to be returned for a touchdown. Against the Dolphins, Jarvis Landry’s 69-yard punt return put them ahead to stay in the fourth quarter.
—Kirk Cousins threw two interceptions against the Dolphins. He now has had multiple turnovers in eight of his 15 NFL games.
—Jamison Crowder averaged 11.5 yards on two punt returns. Last year Andre Roberts was the team’s primary punt returner with an average of 7.4 yards. A very small sample size but so far, so good.
—Today’s schedule: Jay Gruden New conference 3:30, Comcast SportsNet
—Days until: Rams @ Redskins 6; Redskins @ Giants Thursday night 10; Eagles @ Redskins 20
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In case you missed it
The NFC East was a beast for a while, but in recent weeks, the division is fading. All the teams outside of Dallas lost this weekend, and losing streaks are popping up throughout the I-95 Corridor. Here's the NFC East update:
- The Minnesota Vikings gave the Dallas Cowboys all they could handle last Thursday night, and yet, the Cowboys won 17-15. Dak Prescott was not impressive in Minneapolis, but Ezekiel Elliott was and the Cowboys defense did just enough to slow the Vikings terrible offense. At 11-1, Dallas has clinched a playoff berth, and with a date in New York this Sunday night, Jerry Jones' crew has a chance to avenge their only loss of the year, which came in Week 1 to the Giants.
- It seemed expectations met reality for the New York Giants last Sunday in Pittsburgh. Ben McAdoo's team had won six games in a row, but largely, faced poor competition. In their first tough test since the leaves started falling, Eli Manning's offense could not get going and the Giants fell to 8-4, still in possession of the first NFC Wild Card spot. Even on their win streak, the Giants didn't pass many eye tests. Beat Dallas on Sunday night and all that changes.
- Two weeks ago the Washington Redskins were one of the hottest teams in the NFL. Winners of two straight and with a surging Kirk Cousins, the Redskins marched to Dallas on Thanksgiving and gave the Cowboys a real test. Despite the loss, Washington still held its spot with the second NFC Wild Card. After a deflating loss in Arizona, now the 'Skins are on the outside looking in of the playoffs. Good news for Jay Gruden and company: The team can get right back in the thick of things this week in Philly, and the remaining four-game schedule looks advantageous.
- While the Redskins have lost two in a row and are in danger of falling out of the playoff race, the Philadelphia Eagles have lost three in a row and look to be falling apart. Rookie QB Carson Wentz is devoid of offensive weapons to work with and the Eagles have been outscored 85-42 in their last three games. Philly can get their first NFC East win this week with the 'Skins visiting, but it will take a different effort than they've shown in the last month.
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JP Finlay and Rich Tandler address the most important question for Redskins fans after two straight losses - is it time to freak out?
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