Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
On Twitter: dcsportsbog and PostSports  |  Facebook  |  E-mail alerts: Redskins and Sports  |  RSS
Posted at 4:47 PM ET, 12/19/2010

Redskins-Cowboys, best and worst

By Dan Steinberg


Best and worst from the Redskins' 33-30 loss to the Cowboys in Dallas.

Best Yawn Donovan McNabb! This was one of the 714 times McNabb was shown during Fox's coverage of Sunday's game. But for as much as the 48 hours before the game were about McNabb, the aftermath probably won't be. I mean, heck, I guess Mike Shanahan was right! Our bad!

Worst Job of Tanking: The NFL Network did an entire segment Sunday morning suggesting the Redskins were trying to tank the season. If so, they did a fairly miserable job of that. Teams that are tanking their season generally don't erase 20-point second-half deficits.

Best Job of Supervising a Coin Toss: Donovan McNabb. Good job, captain. "That's insanity, to send that man out there," Michael Strahan said during the halftime show on Fox. "You've already embarrassed him enough with the situation. Don't send him out there for the coin toss."

Worst Drop: On Washington's next-to-last drive, Santana Moss had a possible 70-something yard touchdown pass slide off his hands. The next two plays were sacks, and the Redskins punted from terrible field position, eventually leading to the game-winning field goal.

Best-Flying Goal-Line Stop: London Fletcher's still doing it, isn't he? I just can't remember a game where fans were complaining about the play of Fletcher. Like, ever. That's a pretty nice thing to put on your resume.

Worst Goal-Line Stop: DeAngelo Hall vs. Jason Witten. Didn't work out.

Best Idea: The Redskins have been bad this year, in lots of ways, on both sides of the ball. The offense reached 30 points on Sunday for the first time this season. and maybe the decision-makers now think they know what was wrong with the offense. My idea: someone should figure out what's wrong with the defense, because they give up too many dang points. "Horrific," I believe is the word Brian Mitchell used. Over the 96 regular-season games before the arrival of Jim Haslett, the Skins had given up at least 30 points just 11 times. In Haslett's first 14 games here, the Redskins have given up at least 30 points six times. That's not on the quarterback.

Worst Debut: The good came later, but Rex Grossman's first drive was bad: short pass, incomplete pass poorly thrown, incomplete pass poorly thrown. Run game? Pshaw! Rex don't need no run game! I guess they were just setting stuff up for the third quarter. At this point, the cynical vultures -- and I was one -- began preparing for a week-long feast.

Best Cardiovascular Endurance: Rex Grossman. Let's be honest. No one in the universe, including Rex Grossman, Rex Grossman's fondest family members, Res Grossman's shrink and Rex Grossman's childhood teddy bear, thought Rex Grossman was leading the Skins back from that 20-point deficit. The thought never entered my own skull. Like, the thought was 400 miles from my house, drunk and naked, flitting about an abandoned Appalachian motel. But that guy did things no Redskins quarterback has done in years during the second half, including tossing four touchdown passes (first time since 2005) and a pair of two-point conversions. I'm assuming it was either cardiovascular endurance or grasp of the offense.

Worst Debut, Part II: New punter Sam Paulescu's first effort was a 45-yard line drive that was returned 31 yards. The return only ended when Paulescu tripped Bryan McCann, though he wasn't flagged. Paulescu averaged 39.5 yards on his four punts.

Best Quote: "37s the Mike, 37s the Mike!!!!" Jon Kitna screamed on Dallas's first drive, pointing to Reed Doughty. That, theoretically, was supposed to signal something about Doughty's role on the next play. Turned out Doughty's role on the next play was to sack Kitna. In terms of freakish pre-snap screaming, Kitna is no Manning.

Worst Momentum: Last week, Ryan Torain broke all sorts of records in a breathtakingly effective first half. This week, Torain got five carries in the first half. Santana Moss had two. And despite averaging 4.8 yards a carry, Torain only rushed 11 times. Maybe the Redskins already know what they have there.

Best Starting Field Position: Here's how Dallas started the game: their own 46, the Redskins' 30, the Redskins' 27, the Redskins' 35.

Worst Starting Field Position: Here's how Washington started the game: their own 13, their own 2, their own 20.

Best Question: After the game, Shanahan repeatedly said he would have two more weeks to evaluate Rex Grossman. My question: I thought they were going to evaluate Grossman and John Beck as the season close? Did The Mullet lose his chance on Sunday? Does he no longer deserve an opportunity to show what he can do?

Worst Interception: For as many inexplicable things McNabb has done this season, I can't recall him floating a pass to no one in the flat off his back foot, bearing a handwritten invitation to opposing defenders to intercept it, as Grossman did in the first half. At least McNabb would have skipped that throw, leaving it impossible for Gerald Sensabaugh to intercept. The pick led to a touchdown.

Best Rye: Has anyone out there had High West Rocky Mountain Rye Whiskey? It's from Park City, Utah, and it tastes like heaven in a shot glass. The price is ridiculous, but it makes the pain go away, and it's so delicious you just want to rub it all over your body.

Worst Disappearance: Or maybe best disappearance. I'm getting confused. Anyhow, for the second straight week, Chris Cooley had zero catches in the first half. That seemed strange. Grossman started looking for him in the second half, and Cooley finished with 4 catches for 53 yards and a touchdown.

Best Discovery: For most of the season, we've all been convinced that Brandon Banks was the team's biggest find. And some people might be tempted to give Grossman that label. But I think it might actually be Anthony Armstrong, who had his first career 100-yard receiving game on Sunday, despite the QB change. In 10 of the past 11 weeks, Armstrong has had at least 40 yards receiving, and in 10 of the past 11 weeks he's caught at least two passes.

Worst Personal Foul Call: The one where Andre Carter possibly tickled Jon Kitna's upper arm with his helmet was fairly absurd. It led to a Dallas touchdown. 'Course, the one where Anthony Spencer possibly brushed Grossman's facemask was scarcely better. That one led to a touchdown, too.

Best Speech: "People have no idea what I look at every day," Mike Shanahan said after the game. "You know, these people, these experts, they're not out at practice. They judge people by what they've seen in the past. You know, I had Jake Plummer. You know, he had a winning percentage of 36 percent, and everybody said we were crazy. He had 90 touchdowns and 114 interceptions. How can you bring a guy to the Denver Broncos that won 36 percent of his games. And four years later, he won 72 percent of his games." Someone's feeling good about himself.

Worst Trade: Whatever you thought about the Donovan McNabb trade in April, it's sure hard to justify in December. If he doesn't play, and if his replacement makes games more entertaining, then maybe you might as well have two extra draft picks in your desk drawer.

Best Philosopher:"When you've been a Redskins as long as I have, been through a lot, you've seen a lot of different things, and things that's done differently than anywhere," Santana Moss told Comcast SportsNet after the game.

Worst City: With the Redskins' loss, D.C.-area pro teams moved to 2-19 in the month of December. The Caps, Wizards and Redskins have combined for 17 straight losses.

Worst Standings: Dallas and Washington are now tied at 5-9.

Best Hands in Pants: Donovan McNabb! Majestic.


By Dan Steinberg  | December 19, 2010; 4:47 PM ET
Categories:  Redskins  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: McNabb jersey prices slashed
Next: Jurgensen: McNabb didn't practice 100 percent

Comments

Thanks a lot, Steinberg. You're little missive about thoughts from the Appalachian motel made me spit beer all over my laptop.

Posted by: TheDubb | December 19, 2010 4:59 PM | Report abuse

Thanks a lot, Steinberg. Your little missive about thoughts from the Appalachian motel made me spit beer all over my laptop.

Posted by: TheDubb | December 19, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

It isn't too hard to figure out the problems on defense. We're running a 3-4 defense with 4-3 personnel.

Not a recipe for success at any level.

Posted by: CapsNut | December 19, 2010 5:19 PM | Report abuse

I hope you obsessively read these comments Dan... because that abandoned hotel imagery was inspired! Pat yourself on the back.

As for the rest... McNabb is who we thought he was... and Grossman is NOT the answer. Too inconsistent.

Posted by: johnvandermyde | December 19, 2010 5:39 PM | Report abuse

Capsnut is absolutely correct. You want to switch to the 3-4? Great, wait until you're able to acquire the necessary personnel instead of just declaring we're switching no matter who is on our team. It's not like our NT is pushed back 3 yards beyond the line of scrimmage every play.

Posted by: Andymr | December 19, 2010 5:43 PM | Report abuse

A picture of McNabb with his hand in is pants? Was this written by a 15 year old boy or a media professional who works for the Washington Post?

Posted by: Aerowaz | December 19, 2010 6:15 PM | Report abuse

all of this praise for Grossman and no one wants to point that all these numbers were against a team that is worse than us? lets see how he does against the Jags and Giants before we sing any songs. And like someone previously mentioned, Grossman isn't the answer. He's a bandaid who can potentially slow the bleeding for a while, but the Skins need to draft QB, OL, RB, WR,CB...

Posted by: covertops26 | December 19, 2010 6:49 PM | Report abuse

all of this praise for Grossman and no one wants to point that all these numbers were against a team that is worse than us? lets see how he does against the Jags and Giants before we sing any songs. And like someone previously mentioned, Grossman isn't the answer. He's a bandaid who can potentially slow the bleeding for a while, but the Skins need to draft QB, OL, RB, WR,CB...

Posted by: covertops26 | December 19, 2010 6:49 PM | Report abuse

all of this praise for Grossman and no one wants to point that all these numbers were against a team that is worse than us? lets see how he does against the Jags and Giants before we sing any songs. And like someone previously mentioned, Grossman isn't the answer. He's a bandaid who can potentially slow the bleeding for a while, but the Skins need to draft QB, OL, RB, WR,CB...

Posted by: covertops26 | December 19, 2010 6:49 PM | Report abuse

@"Best Rye": try George T. Stagg. mmmm.

also, McNabb sucks and Cooley might be the most underutililzed player in the NFL after Adrian Peterson

Posted by: JohnnyBlades | December 19, 2010 7:09 PM | Report abuse

what a terrible article. Grossman had 2 pics and a fumble, please get rid of him. On another day he could easily have 5pics and 3 fumbles. And he knows the offense. Haha
He is almost good enough to be a backup.
Mcnabb on the other hand is in his first season with this offense. And now the coach has thrown him under the bus. FIRE SHANAHAN he is a loser. He was lucky he inherited a great team in denver. Loser Shanahan will be gone after another bad season next year. And I can tell you the redskins have lost alot of fans because of this. Mcnabb will go else where and win. And we will be losers till shanahan is fired.


Posted by: wohwinner | December 19, 2010 7:23 PM | Report abuse

Why would you mention Jake Plummer. He benched him and ended his career after he took denver to the afc championship game. Another horrible mistake shanahan has made.

Thats how shanahan treats his players like trash. Thats why after losing some great players from a team he inherited he never can win.
FIRE SHANAHAN!!!!

Posted by: wohwinner | December 19, 2010 7:30 PM | Report abuse

Yes, Grossman had four touchdown passes, but does anybody really think he is a better qb than McNabb? Are you crazy? He should have been intercepted 4 or 5 times and I am shocked that he did not fumble 3 or 4 times to go with it. We played the team that is last in our division and barely managed to remain competitive with them. If we were playing the Eagles again, they probably would have administered a worse beating than they did the last time.
Being a Redskin fan is not fun any more, it is an embarrassment!

Posted by: rpm2nite | December 19, 2010 7:37 PM | Report abuse

What cheese goes best with Rye, and do you factor in its spreadability on the human body?

Posted by: rdpinva | December 19, 2010 7:40 PM | Report abuse

Daniel Snyder needs to sell the franchise to someone who will hire Marty Schottenheimer and keep him around long enough to build a young, disciplined team. Then we could look forward to a season worth watching around 2016.

Posted by: Gerry6 | December 19, 2010 7:45 PM | Report abuse

No mention of the facemask on Banks on the one kick return? At least we scored a touchdown on that drive, but HOW HOW HOW do the refs miss that???? I understand if it was away from the play, but Banks was the ball carrier!! Not blaming the refs for anything, but Riveron and his crew are likely the worst officiating team in the NFL, or tied with Ron Winter. Look it up...
As for the game, if there is anyone on here who thought the Skins would actually win should go get a full head exam. The only thing that surprised me was that the final score was not 44-10. This team is bad, the D especially.

Posted by: scoot21 | December 19, 2010 8:15 PM | Report abuse

When the WORST NFL team in yardage surrendered plays the 2nd WORST team in points allowed, it makes for an entertaining game!

Which brings me to Jim Haslett. If Shanahan applied the same standards to his coaches that he does to his QB, who deserves to sit out the last two games more than Haslett, who might be the worst DC in DC since?????

Posted by: 54465446 | December 19, 2010 8:38 PM | Report abuse

Best hands in the pants was on that joke call against spencer for looking at grossbag that gave them 17 plays inside the 10 after they were stopped. the ref must have been dreaming about redskins legend Jerry Smith. dallas had 8 practice squad guys out there today. that should have been 56-0 at best. fire that glass eyed, razor lipped, weasl shanibag today.

Posted by: doyouktt | December 19, 2010 8:40 PM | Report abuse

54465446 - Haz might be the worst DC since Mike Nolan. I remember Nolan's d-lines - he had them always shifting before the snap to mess up blocking assignments, but what ended up happening was that they would be mid-shift when the ball was snapped and teams would simply plow 5, 6 yards a pop - all the way down the field. We could not stop the run to save our lives. I don't recall our point totals that year, but I don know if we had this year's offence and last year's defence we would be 8-8 or 9-7.

Posted by: scoot21 | December 19, 2010 8:44 PM | Report abuse

@JohnnyBlades -- sorry to nitpick but George T. Stagg is a bourbon, not technically a rye. It is a nectar of the gods though. In the same family -- try the Sazerac 18 for a good rye. Can't wait to try the High West in an abandoned Appalachian motel some day...

Posted by: SSFSCoWA | December 19, 2010 8:48 PM | Report abuse

Biggest "problem" with the defense today was that they started on their own 30 most of the time because the offense went three-and-out and the only guy who could tackle on special teams was the new punter.

They had a few people who missed tackles, but they also made some nice goal-line stands. And you're right to highlight London Fletcher -- if they're tanking, no one told Fletcher.

Agreed with everyone who's cautioning against anointing Grossman. He was fundamentally awful -- throwing off the back foot under little pressure, overthrowing a wide-open Moss in the end zone, throwing balls that shouldn't have been thrown, etc. My hunch is that the Cowboys let him roll up some numbers against them so the Redskins will never again start McNabb.

McNabb was reviewing photos with Grossman through the game. Maybe he should be the offensive coordinator next week, and Kyle Shanahan can handle the coin toss.

Posted by: BDVienna | December 19, 2010 8:51 PM | Report abuse

scoot2:

Agreed.

It was kind of odd to see Shanahan so happy at the post-game news conference. I think he may have just been sharing a private joke with Haslett along the lines of "Psst, you were right. If we sit McNabb, nobody will notice that we have the worst defense in football. Can you believe it worked?"

Posted by: 54465446 | December 19, 2010 9:56 PM | Report abuse

All the bloggers and op-ed columnists "say" that they read their readers comments. Lets please hope that it is true. This season has been doomed from the start. 1st the haynesworth nonsense and drama, then the mcnabb nonsense and drama. But can we get to the core issue here? It may not even be M. Shanahan. its K. Shanahan. With all the drama surrounding the franchies, with us having the "oldest" roster in the NFL, I truly believe the skins could be in the playoffs if they had even an average playcaller. Rex Grossman should receive no credit for throwing 4 tds today. He should be judged by his 3 TO's, all that had impacts on the game. We need to analyze closely over each and every game the play calling that has occured and the inconsistency by the playcaller. Today was another example. After 158 yards rushing in one half last week...torain got 5 carries before halftime? Shanahan called two reverses to Moss within 5 minutes of each other? Does that really fool a fast talented Dallas Defense (at least the D.ends)? I thoroughly laughed when the fox analysts said Grossman was 'feelin it' and was in a "rhythm." The fact of the matter was when the skins made their move, all they did was feed Torain the ball. getting 9 yards on first down carry doesnt hurt a bit. Then on the last drive of the game when the skins got the ball on their own 2, what happened?

whoops! no run! while i applaud being aggressive and throwing out of that position once you get to the 20 how bout you feed a RB who is running incredibly well all season and who has shown he is capable of carrying the team. NOPE! instead the plays came in to continue throwing. until the boys realized thats all we were doing. 3 straight blitzes ended with 2 sacks and a punt. talk about a game changer!


my point is, that K. Shanahan has inconsistently called plays all season. Look at the tape. They are absurd. One drive its one thing. Brilliance on one hand one drive, then the next drive were calling WR reverses from the 5. This is not Mcnabbs fault, as little as it is Grossmans success.

Also, it is no surprise that the Redskins offensive game of the year came against the Houston Texans. Where the skins were nearly unstoppable, and racked immense yardage. I guess work experience makes up for something. Or the Indi Colts. Who K. Shanahan as a member of the texans played twice a year.

Posted by: sanjuan1227 | December 19, 2010 10:16 PM | Report abuse

When the "best and worst" is not posted after a skins game, I get sad.

Posted by: drnosewater | December 19, 2010 10:21 PM | Report abuse

First: Worst Redskins reporting - Mike Wise. Trade him to Cincy for a couple of "cub" reporters. At least we get something - and trim the salary waste.
The only comment that made sense was "Worst Disappearance". Shanahan and his idiot son ignore our best offensive weapon for the first half of each game. Is the coach really THAT stupid?

Posted by: pjohn2 | December 20, 2010 9:14 AM | Report abuse

"For as many inexplicable things McNabb has done this season, I can't recall him floating a pass to no one in the flat off his back foot, bearing a handwritten invitation to opposing defenders to intercept it, as Grossman did in the first half."

I do.....how about last week when he threw four just like that only the Bucs secondary couldn't catch.

Posted by: yampaco | December 20, 2010 9:49 AM | Report abuse

"You know, I had Jake Plummer. You know, he had a winning percentage of 36 percent, and everybody said we were crazy. He had 90 touchdowns and 114 interceptions. How can you bring a guy to the Denver Broncos that won 36 percent of his games. And four years later, he won 72 percent of his games."

---------------------------------------------

Then I benched him. And we sucked again.

Posted by: RiverOtis | December 20, 2010 10:31 AM | Report abuse

I didn't see much of the game, last half of 4th quarter; however, it was nice to see them not quit. Still a big Santana Moss fan, but is he going to critize himself for that last dropped pass like he did to Hunter Smith last week on the extra point.

As far as the last interception, Newman made a good play. The Redskins were desperate and Rex couldn't take a sack.

Rex still turns the ball over to much, but that was the most accurate I've seem throw for the most part of entire game.

bill

Posted by: wnbicher | December 20, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

I didn't see much of the game, last half of 4th quarter; however, it was nice to see them not quit. Still a big Santana Moss fan, but is he going to critize himself for that last dropped pass like he did to Hunter Smith last week on the extra point.

As far as the last interception, Newman made a good play. The Redskins were desperate and Rex couldn't take a sack.

Rex still turns the ball over to much, but that was the most accurate I've seem throw for the most part of entire game.

bill

Posted by: wnbicher | December 20, 2010 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Post a Comment

We encourage users to analyze, comment on and even challenge washingtonpost.com's articles, blogs, reviews and multimedia features.

User reviews and comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions.




characters remaining

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company