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The Redskins, Sacks and Vegas

After my weeks of speculation about how many games the Redskins would be favored in this season, the answer is fairly depressing: exactly half. Vegas--via the Las Vegas Sports Consultants--had entrenched the Redskins in the top 5 of their NFL power rankings earlier this season. But now, like everyone else, they've dropped Washington well into the league's bottom half.

Thus far, Washington has been favored in eight games (New Orleans, Arizona, St. Louis, Detroit, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Seattle and Cincinnati), winning five. Washington has been the underdog six times (Giants twice, Dallas twice, Philly and Baltimore), winning twice. The Redskins will almost certainly be 'dogs in their final two games.

Here's my latest revelation about the Vegas rankings; they correspond pretty nicely to the NFL's sacks leaderboard. Washington is 29th in sacks (with 21, 1.5 a game), ahead only of Cleveland, Cincinnati and Kansas City. The NFC East's other three teams are all top 6 in sacks, and in the top 8 of Vegas's rankings. Of Vegas's top 11 teams, all but two are in the top 10 of the NFL in sacks.

The upshot of all this? Draft more wide receivers.

Anyhow, based on these rankings, Washington is now 1-5 against the NFL elite, 1-2 against the NFL's dregs, and 5-0 against everyone else.

Some more rankings from around the Web: ESPN.com says Washington is 20th, the Football Outsiders' math stuff says Washington is 16th, Sportsline says Washington is 21st, the Sporting News says Washington is 21st, Yahoo! says Washington is 19th and takes some major shots at Jim Zorn along the way, and Fox Sports says Washington is 20th.

The full week 16 LVSC report:

1. Pittsburgh 144.3
2. New York Giants 143.7
3. Dallas 143.2
4. Tennessee 142.9
5. Indianapolis 141.9
6. Baltimore 141.7
7. Carolina 141.5
8. Philadelphia 141.1
9. New England 141.0
10. Minnesota 140.3
11. New York Jets 139.6
12t. Atlanta 139.5
12t. Tampa Bay 139.5
14. Houston 138.3
15. Arizona 138.0
16. San Diego 137.9
17. New Orleans 137.7
18. Chicago 137.2
19. Denver 136.5
20. Miami 136.0
21. Green Bay 135.9
22. Washington 135.7
23. Jacksonville 135.0
24. Buffalo 134.9
25. San Francisco 134.8
26. Kansas City 131.5
27. Seattle 131.4
28. Cleveland 130.8
29. Cincinnati 130.5
30. Oakland 130.2
31. St. Louis 129.0
32. Detroit 128.9

By Dan Steinberg  |  December 18, 2008; 9:22 AM ET
Categories:  NFL , Redskins  
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Comments

The Redskins lost the season because of 2 things; Dan Snider making the newcomer to coaching the Redskins team when he selected Zorn whom has never coached either as an offensive coordinator or as a defensive coordinator. And Zorns bad selections of plays in the last 6 weeks. And his west coast offense then has almost ruined poor Jason Campbells NFL career. Poor Campbell, he is so nice and naive and will probably never figure it out that he has been relegated as a bad quarterback by Zorns west coast offense!

Posted by: moses737 | December 18, 2008 10:45 AM | Report abuse

"Vegas...had entrenched the Redskins in the top 5 of their NFL power rankings earlier this season."

entrenched? as in "to establish solidly"? perhaps "briefly elevated" would be a better choice.

and @moses737: really, Zorn's West Coast offense is ruining Campbell's career? i think Campbell's lack of skill is ruining his career. that sounds harsh, but based on the available evidence over multiple years under multiple coaches, it appears that Campbell is not destined to become an above-average NFL QB. maybe he just hasn't found the right "system" and maybe if you put him on the Patriots he could turn into Matt Cassel, but the fact remains that if you could have your choice of any starting NFL QB for your team, Campbell isn't even in the top half and might have a hard time going above guys like Tyler Thigpen and Shaun Hill.

Posted by: dimesmakedollars | December 18, 2008 11:53 AM | Report abuse

oops, my mistake. upon looking back (note to self: do this before posting critical comment next time), Vegas did have the Skins in the Top 5 for a while there. i rescind my critique of the word choice of the almighty keeper of the Bog.

Posted by: dimesmakedollars | December 18, 2008 12:01 PM | Report abuse

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