Here is what you need to know on this Friday, November 8, nine days before the Washington Redskins go to Philadelphia to play the Eagles.
Fives notes from the Redskins 34-27 loss to the Vikings.
1. For the third straight game, the Redskins blew a double-digit lead in the second half. They led Denver 21-7 in the third quarter before losing 45-21, were up on San Diego 24-14 midway through the fourth quarter and had to win the game in overtime, and on Thursday they had a 27-14 lead in the third quarter.
2. The Redskins have allowed 287 points through nine games. That is the most they have allowed through nine games since the 1954 season.
3. Coming into the game, the Redskins were 7-1 under Mike Shanahan when leading a game by double digits at halftime. They had a 10-point lead at halftime against the Vikings.
4. The Redskins scored on their first five possessions of the game. The last time they did that was against the Falcons on November 3, 1985.
5. Pierre Garçon caught seven passes for 119 yards. He now has at least five catches in every game this season. His nine straight games with five or more catches is the second-longest such streak in Redskins history (Art Monk, 1984-85).
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—Days until: Redskins @ Eagles 9; Monday night 49ers @ Redskins 17; Giants @ Redskins 23
—Today’s schedule: Mike Shanahan news conference, 5:30
In case you missed it
Redskins let one slip away
Championship Sunday produced a flurry of Redskins news. A pair of internal promotions erased the team's vacant coordinator positions, as Greg Manusky landed the defensive coordinator spot and Matt Cavanaugh will take over as offensive coordinator. When Sean McVay left to coach the Rams, many expected Cavanaugh to take over his spot. Here are three reasons why:
- If it ain't broke, don't fix it - There was plenty to criticize from the Redskins the last two seasons, but not much of it came on offense. Cavanaugh joined the organization in 2015 as quarterback coach, and the offense has consistently improved in those two seasons. Though the team struggled to score TDs in the Red Zone, the 2016 version of the Redskins moved the ball at a team-record clip and ranked among the top offensive teams in NFL yardage. When something is working as well as the 'Skins offense, it's not wise to change it dramatically.
- Impressive work - Cavanaugh began coaching QBs for the Redskins in 2015. Kirk Cousins took over as Redskins starting quarterback in 2015. In two years working together, Cousins twice broke the Redskins franchise passing record and is now poised to get a mega-contract in free agency. Talking after the 'Skins loss to the Giants earlier this month, Jay Gruden said, "I think [Cousins'] really improved his game a lot in the last couple years. And a lot of it has to do with Matt Cavanaugh and Sean McVay."
- Make the call - The biggest question remaining for the Redskins - outside of the HUGE unknown surrounding Cousins - will be about play calling. All indications are that Jay Gruden will return to calling the plays from the Washington sideline, and obviously, that's a situation Cavanaugh understands. For two seasons now, Cavanaugh along with McVay, Gruden and offensive line coach Bill Callahan have had input on play calling. With McVay gone, Cavanaugh and Callahan will likely contribute even more in support of Gruden.
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