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Need to Know: The Redskins' five pivotal plays

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Need to Know: The Redskins' five pivotal plays

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, October 5, eight days before the Redskins visit the Cowboys on Sunday night.

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With the Redskins on their bye, the newsy nuggets that usually reside in this space are non-existent. For something a little different, let’s look at five pivotal moments from the first four games. We’ll go through them chronologically:

1. Alfred Morris loses a fumble on the Redskins’ first play from scrimmage of the year—Washington led 7-3 when Morris lost the handle on the ball on his first carry. The Eagles immediately scored a touchdown and the Redskins never held a lead for the rest of that game or at any point in the next game.

2. Aaron Rodgers throws a 35-yard touchdown pass to Randall Cobb on fourth and three—The Redskins were hanging with Green Bay even though the offense was still scuffling. But with two and a half minutes left in the first quarter the Packers went for it on fourth and three and Rodgers converted big with the TD pass to Cobb, who dashed through the middle of the field to the score. It started a run of 21 points in about seven minutes and the game was over before halftime.

3. Robert Griffin III’s 57-yard touchdown pass to Aldrick Robinson against the Lions is overturned on replay—I suppose this moment should be more accurately be described as Robinson dropping Griffin’s sure touchdown pass. If Robinson had held on it would have given the home team a four-point lead with nine minutes to play. The way the Redskins’ defense has been playing that certainly would not have guaranteed a win but it sure would have increased the chances.

4. David Amerson’s 45-yard pick six against the Raiders—Even though the Redskins had just pulled the no-huddle offense off of the shelf to drive to a field goal, they still trailed 14-3 early in the second quarter and were very much in danger of falling to 0-4. But the rookie cornerback jumped in front of the Matt Flynn pass and dashed in for the touchdown that pumped new life into the team.

5. Griffin’s five-yard touchdown pass to Pierre Garçon in the third quarter of the Raiders game—Even though Amerson had kept them alive, the Redskins still had to punch the ball into the end zone to win the game. They finally did late in the third when Griffin dropped back on third and three at the five and fired to Garçon on a slant. The receiver lunged over the goal line and his emphatic spike celebrated the team’s first second-half lead of the season.

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Timeline

—Days until: Redskins @ Cowboys 8; Bears @ Redskins 15; Redskins @ Broncos 22

—The Redskins are on their bye, no availability this week.

TE coach McVay talks about his position

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NFL Draft 2017: First round talent, but injuries explain Fabian Moreau's third round selection by Redskins

NFL Draft 2017: First round talent, but injuries explain Fabian Moreau's third round selection by Redskins

On the field, Fabian Moreau makes plays from his cornerback slot that translate to the NFL game. Staying on the field has been a different matter though. 

In five seasons at UCLA, Moreau dealt with his fair share of adversity. He took a medical redshirt year in 2015, suffering a Lisfranc injury three games into the year. More devestating to his draft status, however, was an injury suffered during his Pro Day in late March. Moreau tore his pectoral muscle while lifting weights.

For many, that injury caused his slip from a possible fringe first rounder to Washington's prize with the 81st pick. It's possible Moreau will be back from injury by the time training camp opens, but it seems likely he begins the summer sessions in Richmond on the PUP list. 

At the combine, Moreau ran a 4.35 40-yard dash. Serious speed, and it instantly makes the 6-foot, 206 lbs., Moreau the fastest corner on the Redskins.

In his senior season, Moreau grabbed two interceptions, forced a fumble and made 31 tackles. Not scared to get physical and play press coverage, Moreau's mindset should mesh well with Josh Norman and Bashaud Breeland as he looks to force his way to playing time. 

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Redskins take UCLA cornerback Moreau in the third round

Redskins take UCLA cornerback Moreau in the third round

After taking Alabama DL Jonathan Allen in the first round and Crimson Tide linebacker Ryan Anderson in the second, the Redskins drafted UCLA corner back Fabian Moreau in the third.

Moreau may have been drafted earlier but he suffered a torn pectoral lifting weights during his pro day. Although medical evaluations have said he should be ready to participate in training camp, he lasted until the 81st pick.

Moreau has good size at 6-0, 206 and he is a plus athlete. At the combine he ran a 4.35 in the 40-yard dash. In 2016 he led the Bruins with six pass breakups and also two interceptions. He is also considered to be a good run defender.

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