Redskins-Colts keys to victory: offense
Here's what the Redskins must do on offense to beat the Colts:
Run the ball. Once again the Redskins will need to run the ball this week. Facing Peyton Manning, it will be very important that they control the time of possession and keep Manning and the Colts offense on the sidelines. The Redskins' running game has been anemic. But the Colts aren't known as a strong run-stopping defense. Ryan Torain and Keiland Williams need to show they can get the job done, and this is the perfect defense for them to do that.
Protect the quarterback. Donovan McNabb caught fire in the second half of the Packers game, but the offense had a difficult time scoring. The Colts defense is known for getting to the quarterback. Defensive end Dwight Freeney is one of the most difficult players to block. He is good at causing turnovers. The Redskins offensive line must find a way to limit the success of the Colts pass rush.
Spread the ball around. The Redskins finally got other receivers involved in the passing game against Green Bay. They will need to do the same thing on Sunday. It will help enormously if the Colts defenders are not comfortable with where they think the ball is going. Of course, Santana Moss and Chris Cooley need to stay involved and active too.
Convert third downs. By having success on third downs the Redskins lengthen the their drives while keeping Manning off the field. The Washington red zone offense must also be more effective. The Redskins were 0-2 inside the 20 in last weekend's game. Touchdowns in the red zone will be the most important key to the Colts game. The Redskins must score TDs.
Eliminate penalties. Last but certainly not least, the Redskins must cut down on penalties. Costly penalties will cost the Redskins the game. The team only had four penalties in the Packers game. That's a positive. Keep the penalties to a minimum.
The Redskins will have to play on a very high level offensively again this week if they want to have a chance to beat a team with Peyton Manning on it. I said this last week: The Redskins' offense can't count on the defense to keep these high-octane offenses under 20 points every week. Washington's offense must help.
Advantage goes to the Redskins, if they do these things.
| October 12, 2010; 12:20 PM ET
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