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Monday Morning H-Back

What did we learn from this game? Hmmm. Well, the Texans might have the worst defense in the NFL. They really can't tackle can they? They over-pursued, bit hard on misdirection plays and lost their confidence by halftime. Not sure how much of the offensive fireworks to attribute to the Redskins' prowess. I think this was a nice little precursor to Sunday's game against Jacksonville, which should tell us precisely where this group stands at the quarter-pole of the season.

It was pretty clear that Al Saunders stripped down the offense and went with nothing but high-percentage throws, and I don't blame him one bit, They needed a win at all costs and this was a great confidence booster. Is it the kind of attack that can win week after week in this league? I doubt it. Against an aggressive front like Jacksonville's it might make some sense, cause no one really runs on them, especially between the tackles. Overall, though, I think this was going back to basics against an overwhelmed opponent. Again, I'm not criticizing - it's actually what I called for in The Remedy last week - but I feel as if we should give the Texans their due and assess just had bad they are before we heap praise on the victors.


Houston is allowing 4.6 yards per carry in its three defeats and opposing QBs have a stunning 123.6 passer rating against the Texans. Yeah, I might make my share of mistakes on this blog, but the decimal point is in the right place there. Brunell put up a 119.3, so he actually under-performed (just kidding, but you catch my drift). Houston has been outscored 59-20 through three quarters this season and opponents have converted 26 of 38 third-down plays. I'm not sure too many teams up here get gashed for 30-yard TDs on draw plays designed to pick up 3 yards and position the ball between the hashes for a field goal in the dying seconds of the half, but it happened..

Sorry folks, but that defense stinks. No commercials! No mercy!

Despite all of that, let's show some love for what went right:

The Redskins had the ball 10 minutes or more in three of the four quarters. Not sure how often that happens in the NFL these days, but I can't imagine it's all that common Washington also held the ball for 20:57 in the second half, which is textbook offense for milking a 21-7 halftime lead.

Saunders obliterated his goal of 52 "positive plays," which means completed passes and runs of any sort, even for a loss. The Skins had 65 such plays against the Texans, shocking considering they were averaging a mere 56 total plays of any kind entering this tilt. We'll be keeping track of that one all year, and it'll be interesting to see if they approach 65 PPs again all season (I have a weakness for these kind of stats, naturally drawn to them, but then I'll also sit through the entire "Behind The Music" for Tony Orlando and Dawn, so with some of this stuff there are clearly forces larger than myself at work).

Not that we didn't already know it, but Portis is one tough little bugger.

Derrick Frost was booming the punts again, and not having to kickoff anymore seems to be helping his game. And, yeah, the pressure was off, but John Hall still nailed his first kick over 40 yards in a long, long time. He seems to be getting stronger post-surgery.

The offensive line played with a lot of heart coming off a couple of subpar outings. We'll see if they can keep it up against what might be the best defensive front in football this Sunday at FedEx.

The Redskins forced two turnovers and posted their first INT of the season (still plenty of room for improvement in this area).

They ran the ball 41 times after rushing that many times in the first two weeks combined.

They entered the game with one play longer than 25 yards and produced three Sunday.

All of that is good stuff to build on. But I wouldn't do too much chest-thumping just yet. Should be enough to get a reprieve from the likes of BOOFER or BOFFER or whatever his name is, but I need to see them click against a tougher defense, personally.

So that's all I got for now. Like they'd say back in school, discuss amongst yourselves in small groups while I go down the hall to barrow a projector, and I'll check back in with some of the negatives in a few hours.

By Jason La Canfora  |  September 25, 2006; 11:25 AM ET
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: TJ Duckett Sits, Somewhere Mike Shanahan is laughing
Next: What Went Wrong


The Skins played like they were supposed to, for the most part. Penalties and some other areas need to be addressed for sure, but if they didn't dominate the Texans, they were done for the year. Anybody else have that kind of relieved but not thrilled feeling at the end of the game? I am very worried about Jacksonville, they looked real tough the little bit I've seen of them this year. Thank goodness we're at FedEx Sunday....

Posted by: Pulldownclaw | September 25, 2006 11:34 AM | Report abuse

I'd like to re-post my comments on the blog from last week:

i can't wait until Brunell shines later this year and all you barnos can't remember why you questioned Gibbs in the first place. Redskins fans have the shortest memory of any fans on the face of the earth. They don't know the meaning of the word "patience".

Posted by: Barno | September 18, 2006 04:25 PM

Posted by: Barno | September 25, 2006 11:44 AM | Report abuse


I'd love to heap praise on Brunell. But quite frankly half of those "passes" were glorified pitches.

The fact that we only threw like 7 passes past 4 yards down field ( Only a slant to Lloyd and that Patten catch come to mind) Is as big an indictment as any in my mind of Brunnell.

I'd love to say he's as good as Manning....he's just not.

Posted by: Skinz | September 25, 2006 11:50 AM | Report abuse

The point is that we have 2 options:

1) Go with Brunell and hope he plays the rest of this season like he did most of last year, and he did yesterday.

2) Go with the kid and cancel any plans we have for the playoffs.

I would like to go to the playoffs this year, so I'm sticking with Brunell.

Posted by: Barno | September 25, 2006 12:06 PM | Report abuse

"but I feel as if we should give the Texans their due and asses just had bad they are before we heap praise on the victors."

That last sentence is supposed to be "...Texans their due and assess just how bad they are..." right? Or were you talking about their asses?

Not a sermon, just a thought.

Posted by: Rage | September 25, 2006 12:08 PM | Report abuse

I hear what you are saying. He gives us a better shot at the playoffs this year. But playing Cambell gives us a better shot at the playoffs next year the year after and the year after that.

Portis, Moss our O-Line et al are in their prime for about 3 more years. We just instituted a new offense. I still think we'd be better off looking long term for once. Not that I don't understand your point.

Posted by: Skinz | September 25, 2006 12:10 PM | Report abuse

Rage, I was actually speaking of their backsides. I meant that.
No, just left off the extra s - that's for sexy - and meant to have assess. (anyone else remember those old Mash's ham commercials?)

Posted by: Jason La Canfora | September 25, 2006 12:16 PM | Report abuse

We should take this victory for what it is - a butt-whipping of a horrible team. Brunell played fine, as most of his passes were of the short dump-off variety.

However, we will be tested against Jacksonville defense. Brunell will go back to looking like the haggardly QB that he is. The offense will have to figure out a way to throw a pass longer than 20 yds if it hopes to make it to teh playoffs this season. Judging by last game, it doesn't seem like it's happening.

Posted by: Realist | September 25, 2006 12:18 PM | Report abuse

The skins did what they had to do. I'm happy that we won, don't get me wrong, but really, we should have trounced them as badly we did. I'm all for building up confidence and stuff but maybe a couple more passes down the field wouldn't have hurt. Would it? Just to show that we can actually do that.

I'd love to "heap praise" on Brunell to, but I can't. He got the job done, and he threw some really nice passes. But this has totally been his modus operandi with the skins: look horrible for a few games, have a good one and get back in the groove for a few...AND then completely fall apart all over again. He's a trickster that one.

Then again, if he can step up and play against Jacksonville this week and make the throws that it takes to win the game, then I'll go back and print out all my rantings about him and eat them, ink, paper and all.

Having Portis really made a diffrence. He looked really great didn't he? I freaked when I saw him standing on the sidlines getting his shoulders checked or whatever pseudo-medical thingy they were up to.

And a big Yay for Hall making one! Now please make them when they really count.

I'll save my screaming about how bad our defense is for later.

Posted by: Megskin | September 25, 2006 12:19 PM | Report abuse

Dudes, last week, I was ParcellsIsAPig. New week, new name. I love you all. Even the texas dude who refuses the knowledge that is the English language. Here are some important things to keep in mind for us all:

1) The W makes things so much better during the week. I was able to sleep soundly. I also noticed that I had a girlfriend. You forget these things when you have to eat Dallas' diaper burgers.
2) We still have huge issues. HUGE. Andre Carter did not crack the stat column. O tackles, 0 sacks, 0 hurries/pressures. He did not even drink any Gatorade. The point is, we only managed 1 sack on an all-out blitz against the most sacked QB in the league. That squad is awful like a southern frat party and we managed 1 sack, Dayne ran for almost 5 yards per carry, and Andre Johnson put up a cozy 150 against our secondary. Our D is still atrocious.
3) If you listened to the color guy (forget his name but didn't think he was actually that bad) he basically said that Archuletta stinks in coverage. Weird. Did anyone say that last week? Oh, I did. Whammy. Grilliams (Greg Williams) must make drastic changes or we will give up one or more of those bombs per week.
4) In a way, that record setting performance for Brunnell was the worst thing that could have happened. It bought that dude another 6 weeks at least. We attempted 2 passes of over 15 yards. One got tipped by 17 people and the other was an absurd catch by General David Patten. People, defenses that do not suck can stop our short little gimmicky passes and checkdowns. These are the same types of plays that went for 0 against Dallas and will go for the same against Jacksonville who by the way, plays with naked anger (nanger) on Defense. The football must be thrown downfield at some point.
5) Portis makes a difference. No doubt. But, people were acting like the offense is game tight because he was back. Did anyone notice Ledell Betts threw up 124 in houston's mouth? Did he suddenly become a great back after getting murdered in Dallas? Did our O-line all of a sudden become dominant in the run game? The answer of course, is no. Houston is just so absurdly bad at football.
6) This Duckett situation makes my special places hurt. We gave up a 3rd round pick for a rental player who is not contributing. How can we not find a place for the junk yard dog. Again, this is symptomatic of how cavalier we are with draft choices. Jason, why do the Redskins hate the draft so much?
7) I have never seen a worse football team at any level than the Houston Texans. Did anyone else feel kind of bad for them? I did. This is a city with nothing. Literally, it is one of the 14 most boring places to visit on this earth just behind Canada. As Mario 'It isn't my fault I'm not Reggie' was getting dominated, I felt sad for the city with the second highest rate of breast implants per capita behind LA. I'm going to send them a care package consisting of some herbal teas, scented candles and the sweat from my federal triangle as all three have a calming effect on humans.

In closing, you are all so important to me. Mucus, Deadskin, Megskin, the're my boys and also girl. Out.

Posted by: ArtMonkToTheSticks | September 25, 2006 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Not too sure where I heard this said, but in reality this game was nothing more than a "bye week with a win" for the skins..we all knew that brunell would play well this week(i wasn't expecting him to break any records though), and buy himself some week is where the real importance lays...the money we're paying to these guys, just getting into the playoffs is not something we should shoot for...the NFC EAST is still ours for the taking, and brunell needs to keep progressing through this offense if he wants to drive the skins forward..

good win this week, but anything less was hardly expected

Posted by: DC | September 25, 2006 12:29 PM | Report abuse

I've got news for the uninformed---Jason Campbell will not lead the Redskins to the playoffs in the years to come. He is not, and never will be, any good. The coaches recognize this already, which is why he isn't in their equation. If he plays his cards right, Campbell may have a career that matches those of Todd Collins, Shaun King and Don Strock.

Posted by: mart | September 25, 2006 12:30 PM | Report abuse

Anyone else find this part of ArtMonkToThe Stick's posting equal parts hilarious/disgusting:
"Did anyone notice Ledell Betts threw up 124 in houston's mouth?"
I can't imagine throwing up 124 times, much less doing so in someone's/something's mouth.
Also, Houston stinks, and I hope not to go back, but girlfriend, Canada rocks. Spent like 10 years covering the NHL, and those people know how to party.
Have you ever gotten after it in Vancouver, Montreal or Toronto? I love Calgary, Edmonton and Ottawa too, and wish Quebec City still had a time.
Love like le nordique!

Posted by: Jason La Canfora | September 25, 2006 12:30 PM | Report abuse

Boy, who is that nerdish looking fella at the top of the blog page? Geez I bet he is the guy who I saw driving the car with the bumper sticker that read "My gamer just fragged your honor student."

Anyways I wanted to discuss the Redskins ever-exciting win over the Texans (which is also the name of a former band fronted by one James Keenan, whose current band TOOL comes to town later this week, fyi) but having just learned about Aaron Carters breaking off of his engagement to his fiance I'm just too broken up to even think anything Redskins-related. Maybe later though.

Posted by: Chief Clancy Wiggum | September 25, 2006 12:30 PM | Report abuse

Chief, you mean Aaron Carter's engagement to the Playboy model who used to sleep with his brother did not last til the end of time? Even in the pantheon of MTV get togethers - Dave/Carmen, Nick/Jess - that's a nanosecond.
But TomKat, that's definitely true love I tell ya.

Posted by: Jason La Canfora | September 25, 2006 12:37 PM | Report abuse

I am a life-long Chargers fan married to a life-long Redskins fan. I have been reading with amusement the comments about Brunnell concerning all the short passes he threw against the Texans.

I would like to remind everybody (fans and haters alike) that there are a couple of QB's in the Hall of Fame that frequently used the short pass - guys like Montana and Young. Get the ball past the line to a playmaker and watch him go. The majority of Jerry Rice's long pass plays started as a short pass (5-10 yards) and he did the rest.

With the wide receivers the Redskins have that can be a very effective weapon.

Hope to play the Skin's again this year - check the schedule ... that means the Super Bowl.

Posted by: A Charger's Fan | September 25, 2006 12:45 PM | Report abuse

Things I remain baffled by:
1) How could the Texans march down the field like that on Williams's defense (even minus Shawn Springs)?
2) How can the Texans never manage to improve?
3) What's the deal with T.J. Duckett? I get that he's insurance and he provides a comfort level, but isn't that a lot to give up? And, how happy do you think he is? I know, I know...we aren't paid to be happy. Except for Jason. We do pay him to be happy.
4) Won't a real defense tear Brunell up if he tries those dink passes all day again?
5) Why is the spleen such a big deal?

Posted by: Jason's editor | September 25, 2006 12:47 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: BOOFER | September 25, 2006 12:53 PM | Report abuse

I already have my flights and hotel in Miami, but if I didn't, I would surely be booking those flights after yesterday's game. The 'Skins look unstoppable. :-)

For the record, The Kid would have completed those three passes :-)

I love how copied right out of WebMD to explain what exactly the spleen does. Before football, I would never have known what an ACL was. Now I feel as if my life is oh so much better thanks to Chris Simms. (in seriousness, I hope he gets better and comes back soon...I like players who play with a smile on their face and look like they're having fun...I can't stand those prima donnas who always have a chip on their shoulder...but I digress)

The reason why the Texans stink is none other than their leadership the past few years. I love Charley Casserley as a person, but come on. Kubiak seems like a no nonsense dude, but the sideline shots of him yesterday were priceless. How many faces can one man make for "constipation" and "confusion"?

As for celebrity breakups, Nick/Jess takes the cake for me. I loved the first season of their show. Of course, those "reality" shows are anything but and are highly edited and choreographed, but Nick at least came off as the kind of guy you want as your best friend. And, Jess...well, apart from the obvious "10" factor, she reminds me of my girlfriends: flighty, ditzy, but ultimately full of energy and love.

Posted by: P Diddy | September 25, 2006 12:59 PM | Report abuse


Simply hilarious and all too true. My special place also hurts. 10/10

Posted by: Skinz | September 25, 2006 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Aaron Carter is up for grabs? I'm so calling him, who has his number?

As you said ArtMonkToTheSticks, our defense is just horrible, everyone just tees off on them. And what is up with Andre Carter? How can you have zeros across the board? Is that even right, I'm afraid to look at the stats, I'll just take your word for it. But how could he not tackle anybody? Or should that be anyone, I guess it doesn't matter. There were so many missed tackles by the rest of the defense it's not like there wasn't plenty of opportunities. He could have just thrown himself to ground every single play and had a better chance of tackling someone than whatever it was he was doing.

Normally AC gets a pass because he's so good looking. But that only goes so far. When you rack up zippies, somethings wrong.

Interceptions. We totally need more of these. Their QB threw up some gimmes that our DBs whiffed on. Speaking of whiffing, Archuleta is going to end up being the King of Whiffingdom pretty soon. He looked atrocious. Last week he couldn't cover, this week he couldn't tackle. Well OK, he did get some, but those guys practically just ran into him and got their legs all tangled up and fell down.

Is it too late to get Ryan Clark back? Walt Harris? Smoot? All those guys would fit in under the price we're paying for Archuleta right? And he doesn't look enough like Aaron Carter to get a pass.

I don't think getting Springs back is going to make a difference at this point. It looked like we were blitzing quite a bit but still, at the end of the day, we ended up with one sack. ONE. Yuck! So unless SS is going to cover people and take over the sack duties, we're in for a rough year.

The thing that has me worried is: Grilliams knows his stuff, and his defenses in the past have been maybe this is the best we're gonna get with the people we have. Maybe he can't do any better with these guys.

Posted by: Megskin | September 25, 2006 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Diddy, can I roll with you? Either you have concocted a perfect alterego while typing away on an old Commodore 64 in your mom's basement, or you truly have the life.

Going to any Skins road games? Are you part of Wilbon's posse?

Posted by: Jason La Canfora | September 25, 2006 1:13 PM | Report abuse

Clearly, the Redskins finally figured out that, of their skil position offensive players (Brunell, Portis, Betts, Moss, Randle-El, and even Lloyd and Cooley), Brunell is the worst of that group. Unfortunately, he is the one that starts off with the ball at the beginning of each play. So their solution was to have him get rid of the ball as soon as possible, with very little risk, wither by handing off, or making a very short pass, and let the playmakers make plays! Actually, this is a brilliant strategy for playing a team with a weak frnt seven, such as Houston. But playing Jacksonville, who held the Steelers to 26 yards rushing and the Colts to 3 yards a carry, they need to be able to stretch the defense better by completing passes downfield. Personally, I think Brunell might be dinged a little, which would help explain some of his problems. I hope I'm wrong and we'll see Brunell completely passes down the field to keep the Jacksonville secondary from cheating towards the line, but I have my doubts.

Posted by: Dsmac | September 25, 2006 1:14 PM | Report abuse

A Charger's Fan: Last time I checked, those two Hall of Famers could throw the long ball just as well as the short. Putting them in the same context with Brunell qualifies as some sort of sin I'm sure.

Maybe you are amused with Brunell and his short passes, but I think the majority of us here are not. I'll be amused with them when he shows us he can launch something downfield that doesn't quack.

Just short passes are not going to cut it against the Jaguars

Posted by: Megskin | September 25, 2006 1:21 PM | Report abuse

Personally, I think Brunell might be dinged a little, which would help explain some of his problems

OH. MY. GOD. When is he NOT dinged a little? That excuse is thrown up every year and I'm getting tired of swallowing it.

As Dexter said: No mas!

Posted by: Megskin | September 25, 2006 1:24 PM | Report abuse

6 more weeks of Brunell. Can someone please stop the pain? With the Redskins not being able to go down field (thanks to an old over paid QB) it will mean more players in the box to tee off on Portis. It was the Texans! Hell a high school QB could have completed 22 on them. Jason am I the only one hoping Brunell goes down?

Posted by: jm220 | September 25, 2006 1:25 PM | Report abuse

Brunell can throw long ball just as well as the short, no doubts about it. The problem is he needs minutes not seconds to complete it.

Posted by: knnva | September 25, 2006 1:35 PM | Report abuse


No you are not the only one hoping he goes down. I refuse to root for players on other teams to get injured and yet when Archuletta and Brunell were slow getting up on Sunday I couldn't help but hope they'd be carried off.

Our skill players are in their prime for 3 more years. It's time to stop thinking short term and recognize Brunell won't get us a 4th trophy.

Posted by: Skinz | September 25, 2006 1:42 PM | Report abuse

The offense and special teams (except for some stupid penalties) looked pretty good. Still worried about the defense; especially with no pass rush with front four. Hopefully we can get Springs back asap.

BTW, what a punt by Frost (60 yards)!! Seemed like the returner ran back 40 yards to catch up to ball.

Now to the refs. They need to call penalties both ways. On Houston's first big pass, the OT dragged Carter down as he was closing in on QB. NO flag. Samuels does same and it is called. All the holding calls on kickoffs and only the Skins get caught??? Luckily they overturned the Portis call. But of course they called it wrong to begin with and Gibbs had to throw out the red hankie.


Posted by: Kevin | September 25, 2006 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Do you honestly think Jason Cambell is better then Brunell. I'm not saying Brunell is the savior, that I don't believe. What I do believe is that Brunell is the best QB we have on our team (not counting Randle El). Jason Cambell was not that great in college. He had 1 solid year on a stacked team. We shouldnt have traded all we did for him, but we did. I must say, don't wish for Cambell. He's not the savior of this team. If he plays, kiss the playoffs goodbye.

Posted by: Eric | September 25, 2006 1:57 PM | Report abuse

Megskin: I want Brunell out too. If you read my whole post, I don't think he'll cut it against the top defenses the Redskins will have to play with this schedule. Houston, yes; Jacksonville, no! I was just implying that if he is hurt, all the more reason to put in someone healthy. The Redskins will need someone that can stretch the field when they play teams better than Houston (which is just about every team).

Posted by: Dsmac | September 25, 2006 1:58 PM | Report abuse

My onanistic thoughts on the Santa Ana like demolishing of the Texans...

Brunell cannot get it done downfield but give credit where it is due to Al Saunders. He came up with a game plan that suits his personnel's strengths. There is no reason to think that will not work against the Jags, Colts etc b/c by playing horizontal it slows the pass rush and allows you to go down field on hitches/double moves and beat defenses the overpursue(being that I am in an optimistic mood and believe Brunell can make the throws).

Also we will be able to run if Thomas and Dockery played like they did yesterday(although not against Stroud and Henderson). We demolished a bad team and the offense looked like it was dictating instead of reacting.

Now why I did not buy my tix to Miami yet is the defense doesn't look good. More specifically the ends and Archuleta (who is garbage). To all those who think Sean Taylor is the one getting beat down field i hear the Wilson Bridge is for sale. He is the off side safety on all of those plays. The WR starts on his side and runs a post into the deep 1/4 Archuleta should be playing but since he looks into the backfield he gets bruned. It looks they flipped Archuleta and kept him deep and walked Taylor up b/c he can adjust. The d-line is still garbage and our inability to pressure the QB will hurt us as every QB we faced has had a great day. If this continues i am going to the courthouse to file charges against Andre Carter and Archuleta for stealing.

Hope this made you angry/happy/sad and helped kill some time at work...I close with a question for the Maestro here...Why does the national sports media hate the 'Skins?

Posted by: Not So Angry American | September 25, 2006 1:59 PM | Report abuse

I love the banter. For the record JLC, I meant that Betts rushed for 124 yards and in doing so, smacked Houston in the mouth. This, as opposed to him physically vomitting in Houston's collective maw. Word.

We all seem to agree that beating the Texans is like going to the elementary school playground, blocking the 3'7" kid with thick glasses and no crossover's shot and then telling him that he will never be a man, of course you can do it but it shouldn't make you feel good.

We should put any Brunnell debating to rest. We are married to that dude, and like that 40-something couple that hates each other at Bennigan's, we have to stay together for the kids. I hope I am forced to eat my words after he shreds a fromidable J-ville D but in the words of the girl at a party in high school when I told her that I could dunk, "ummmmm, I doubt it."

Posted by: ArtMonkToTheSticks | September 25, 2006 2:14 PM | Report abuse

I think Skins fans in DC must just hate the Skins (like Jets fans in NY feel about the Jets). I thought it was a great game. People posted about how crappy Brunell was throwing DURING the game (on the TJ Duckett thread) ... intentionally blind to the fact that he had 22 CONSECUTIVE completions. Then people go off on how horrible Houston is as a team ... based on statistics ... where Houston racked up playing Philly and Indy. Of course, the numbers look bad if you start against those two teams. David Carr has a good arm and Gary Kubiak knows how to call a game (they both just need a new O-line). Skins fans in DC just love to hate their team.

That said, I love the Skins. I thought it was great that Saunders did actually spread around the passes. [Maybe he can do the same with the second RB position now.] I like how Cooley started catching balls, and how he made some great downfield blocks. The O-line seems to have figured out blocking, esp. pull blocks. Posters on this thread give no love to the return of Clinton Portis and how his play can mentally wear down a defense. On defense, Golsten showed up as the spark plug. Carlos Rogers and Warrick Holdman are showing up on the outside. Defensive "yards after contact" are starting to fall, i.e., the first hit is starting to become the end of the gain.

I was really pleased and think we have a legitimate shot against Jacksonville, esp. now that the running game has to be respected again.

Question for Jason: What's the difference between removing an appendix (Big Ben - one week) and a spleen (C.Simms - 2 plus months)?

Posted by: dcsween | September 25, 2006 2:20 PM | Report abuse

well i think you all have summed it up pretty well...

a great win...that means absolutely nothing...unless of course we validate it with a win/solid performance next week...

we got what we wanted...a pratice game to get an offensive flow going at least...

as for brunell i sure hope he doesnt go down...i still have high hopes for this year and he is all we got for this year...and JC is a big question mark anyway...

penalties and the defense are a problem...i just dont understand how grilliams cant piece something stable together...2004 was a patchwork D i thought...i guess not having peirce, champ and smoot to build around is the problem... least we got what we needed out of houston with the jags coming to town...ill sleep better this week anyway...

i must weigh in on canada...that place sorry but ive never had a dull moment in the great white them cougars!!!

oh and spleanectomys suck @$$...well at least mine did ...had mine ruptured in a hockey game against the naval academy back in '94...hit from behind as i was skating top speed after the puck into the side boards where there wasnt any glass...dude launched me from about 3 yards out and i caught the top of the boards right on the spleen...had emergency surgery that night and was in the hospital for a week (tube snaked up my nose and into my stomach, catheter, the works...then i got out and wasnt allowed to do anything active for 4-6 weeks and then when i could i was at about 10-20% energy level, exhausted all the time (to the point of not wanting to get out of bed after 14 hours of sleep) for about 6 it was explained to me the body is spending all its energy healing internally...then one day its done and the energy is back...

but that was '94 and as i understand the surgery/procedure has changed dramatically with a very small incision (a lot less invasive), in and out in a day and i dont know how long the body has to heal internally for after that but i imagine its a lot less than the 6 months (maybe just a few weeks) i had to endure...still i would be surprised if he played again this year...then again who knows...this is what happened to Peter Forsberg in the playoffs a few years back and he took the next season off as well (of course he did that to recover his body from other lingering injuries)...but after mine i was back the next season...albeit 10 lbs lighter and a whole lot meaner!!!

Posted by: deadskin | September 25, 2006 2:22 PM | Report abuse

I still prefer the image of Betts releasing his lunch 124 times at the line of scrimmage, but that's just me ...

I would say the difference between the spleen and the apendix is what, 6 inches or so?

Posted by: Jason La Canfora | September 25, 2006 2:33 PM | Report abuse

ArtMonktotheSticks is off the reservation. He's off the reservation. Remember what I told you about him? Even after a dominating performance, he'll list 181 problems with the squad.

Like I said last week, we were going to lock Houston in a closet with no light on and pretend the boogie man lived in there. Mario Williams? What a joke. Charlie Casserly should be forced to work in a toll booth outside of Delaware for the rest of his life.

If there were any justice in football awards, John Henderson of the Jacksonville Yaguars would run away with the Def. Player of the Year award. Angriest man in football. He could pull the sword from the lake with those hands. We should never even look him in the eyes let alone run in his direction. In fact, we should apologize to him at the beginning of the game for playing.

I hate the Yaguars. I think we will beat them, by a little tiny bit. The team I'm worried about? Tennessee. Sounds weird like when you ask a girl out that you like and she hesitates and you say something weird to break the two-second silence. Vince Young will be starting by then. We all know how the Skins play against mobile QBs. I'll give you a hint: It rhymes with "itburger".

We are in fact married to Brunell. That is a done deal. We will look awful early on against Jacksonville...just don't loose faith...Jack Del Rio is an idiot and he will find a way to blow the game.

I forgot to tell you...BOOYAKASHOT.

Posted by: The Governor | September 25, 2006 2:46 PM | Report abuse

Deadskin: I think...yeah...I just threw up in my mouth a little bit...

The spleen thing happened to my little league teammate. He still cannot drink orange juice. I have no idea if the events are related.

Great point on Grilliams' D. The last couple years, you couldn't run on all because we brought violence and struggle against grown men. This year? We seem to be suspect against the run which makes us that much more vulnerable against the pass (especially when you subtract our #1 and #3 corners, a nickel safety in Priloeoueoueoeueu, and add in Archu-dee-too). Our O is going to have to carry the D this year it seems. I hope it can.

'Twere we to hold the rock for 39 minutes against the jags, I would do a tripod in the middle of Wisconsin Ave during rush hour.

I like the Chargers dude. I want to have you over to my house and talk about sports. We shall eat barbequed meats and talk of times past as our franchises are intrinsically linked forever and we are congenial foes if not friendly competitors. Best of luck to you sir as you cruise to 12 wins with your soft and supple schedule. May we indeed meet in Miami for a celebration of the the broken ankle of donovan mcnabb and the downing of the Eli Manning hype balloon.

Posted by: ArtMonkToTheSticks | September 25, 2006 2:49 PM | Report abuse


Do you honestly think this team is not stack on offense? You have a beast of a running back with Portis. You have Randel El and Moss that can go deep on anyone. Then you have a TE that can get the job done and a Brandon that makes great catches. Jason can move much better than Brunell in the pocket and has a stronger arm. Even you have to agree with that. And let me say that when I want Brunell to go down I do not want him to be hurt seriously or life threatening.Just something to keep him out for the rest of the season.

Posted by: jm220 | September 25, 2006 2:53 PM | Report abuse

Jason, you can always roll with me.

I was thinking of going to the Giants game in NYC and I will almost certainly be in New Orleans in mid-December. I can pretty much hit any game I want, but once it gets past November, I can do without the cold weather. Even though I grew up in DC, I'm pretty much a Californian now. If it isn't warm and sunny, forget it.

Also, the flexible scheduling thing is really going to make it difficult for me to schedule my typical redeyes in, redeyes out.

Speaking of rollin' with the homies, I think you and the folks on this blog will like this article:

Posted by: P Diddy | September 25, 2006 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Diddy, great link. After reading that I have to pat myself on the back. I think I nailed our local Entourage analogy a few weeks back.

Posted by: Jason La Canfora | September 25, 2006 3:01 PM | Report abuse

New man law: If you don't have something positive to say about your team, keep your stupid mouth shut.

Posted by: Barno | September 25, 2006 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Barno: Whoa, relax bruh. We are just adults discussing things and sharing opinions. Any perceived 'negativity' is only because having a parade in DC is so important to me. We are dissecting which can sound negative.

Also, what is the rule on unilateral man-law enacting? Seems to defeat the purpose as I understand it.

I still love you and I love your enthusiasm. Take a lap, hit the showers. See you at practice tomorrow.

Posted by: ArtMonkToTheSticks | September 25, 2006 3:14 PM | Report abuse

I am no fan of of JC and i'm not saying he's the answer. My argument is that Brunell isn't going to get it done. So if all this year does is prove that JC isn't our man and the 24 first round picks we gave up for him could have been spent more wisely.

Isn't that better than finding it out next year and wasting another year of Portis, Springs, Moss, Lloyd, A.R.E., et al's time left?

Posted by: Skinz | September 25, 2006 3:18 PM | Report abuse

the difference between the splean and appendix...the splean though not critically important is a major organ...the appendix i dont think you can classify it that way...

both can be removed and dont need to be replaced...

every dr. ive ever been to after my spleanectomy has said something different in terms of its function (storing blood, filtering blood, use in development as an infant) so i wont go there...but one thing that all of them have said is that my immune system will be weaker and i need to be cognisant of that...which of course i havent really respected...which brings me to my next set of problems from there...hold that thought...

ArtMonkToTheSticks...yeah i dont think the OJ issue is directly related to the spleanectomy but indirectly...let me say this...

so i am doing a lot of research on food allergies...because ive become allergic to everything under the sun...turns out...people with weakened immune systems tend to develop food allergies to foods they consume very regularly (foods they abuse so to speak)...thus i am allergic now to dairy (casien and whey protiens), eggs, gluten (wheat, barley, rye, oats, spelt etc), corn and beans...

so the OJ issue for the little leaguer may be like the dairy, eggs, gluten, corn and beans for me...did the kid eat a lot of oranges and drink a lot of oj before the problems started? supposed to be able to work with alternative drs. (naturopaths, accupunturists etc) to heal my gut and hopefully be able to get some of those foods back in my diet in time...and hopefully practice moderation there after...

Posted by: deadskin | September 25, 2006 3:33 PM | Report abuse

Okay, I concede we probably need to have a quarom of blog leaders before enacting a man law. In this case, I'll call it a blog law.
deadskin - good luck with everything, man. That sounds like a tricky situation. We're all thinking positive thoughts for you, even BOOFER.

Posted by: Jason La Canfora | September 25, 2006 3:42 PM | Report abuse

I'm with dcsween. It was great game, crappy opponent or otherwise. A couple thoughts...
(1) I'm not saying we all need to run out and buy Brunell jerseys, but give the record breaker his due. Dude found the open receiver and got him the ball. Those long drives took the life out of Houston.
(2) How can anyone say that breaking that record is the worst thing to happen? It's better to have a Redskin hold that record than Rich Gannon. At the very least, it should give the offense some confidence.
(3) You want a noodle-armed QB? Look no further than Gillete Field last night. Tom Brady was attrocious. I think he threw the ball away on 3 consecutive plays. I wonder if they're calling for the backup in New England?
(4) The defense couldn't stop the run last year, either, when Holdman was starting. Remember what Tatum Bell and Priest Holmes did to us while Arrington was on the bench? So far Holdman and McIntosh haven't done much to make me forget #56.
(5) I think Lemar Marshall is better than A. Pierce ever was.
(6) If old whats-his-name Manning can put up 21 points on J-ville, certainly the record-breaking Mark Brunell can, too.

Posted by: Joe in Raleigh | September 25, 2006 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Joe in Raleigh:

I am married to Kiera Knightly and Charleze Theron. See? I can just say things that are not true also.

Yes we did too stop the run last year. We were 13th in the NFL in yards per game and if one subtracts the NYG game where we gave up 220 to Tiki, we were in the top 8 for the rest of the season. We had breakdowns that led to big plays Bell's 55 yarder, 1 long run against Alexander, Thomlinson's game winner in OT etc. I attribute that to over-aggressiveness and trying to make big plays. Holmes had 18 yards rushing on us last year by the way, it was a wing pass that he took to the house. Whammy.

When Brunnell has won 3 super bowls, and had his roster stripped around him, then we can banter about him being like Tom Brady. My bet, is that they are not calling for the backup just yet on the Hall of Famer. Good point though.

Think about this. Imagine you are playing Mike Tyson's Punchout. Say you lose to Tyson, and then get bumped back and lose to Super Macho Man. Say you get beaten bad, TKO round 1. Now say you reset the game and knock out Glass Joe. Would you consider yourself champ?


Posted by: ArtMonkToTheSticks | September 25, 2006 4:15 PM | Report abuse

Saying Brunell hit the open reciever is a bit of a stretch. JLC if you can get someone at Redskins park to tell you how many of those "passes" were the 2nd or 3rd progression i'd be interested to know.

Remember, about 1/3 of his yards "passing" was "finding the open reciever" portis who just happened to be 2 ft. in front of him behind the line of scrimmage.

Posted by: Skinz | September 25, 2006 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Bell and Holmes ran right past Holdman while he was either tied up with a blocker or looking the other way. Yes, Holmes caught a swing pass. Regardless, Arrington would have made those plays.

Brady looked like a deer in the headlights, noodle-arm QB last night. He may have some rings, but he doesn't hold the consecutive completion record. Whammy!

My best to Charleze.

Posted by: Joe in Raleigh | September 25, 2006 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Lavar was not a great fit for Grilliams D. Pierce was the QB on that Defense and a much greater loss. Solid and Dependable. I (and the pro bowl voters) both disagree that Lamar was better than Peirce last year.

Posted by: Skinz | September 25, 2006 4:33 PM | Report abuse

bah...its healthier living i worries...i wasnt looking for sympathy...just sharing my splean experience and answering bloggers question about it and other indirect complications...all easier to deal with when the redskins win!!!

Posted by: deadskin | September 25, 2006 5:53 PM | Report abuse

LaVar was a great Redskin and I reject this notion that he wasn't a fit. If Grilliams couldn't fit him into the defensive scheme then that's on him.

As for Pierce, he was a good player and I wish we had resigned him. But Marshall has looked just as good to me this year. Neither has ever been to the pro bowl.

Posted by: Joe in Raleigh | September 26, 2006 9:49 AM | Report abuse

Peirce was an alternate last year. If it's on greg then it's also on Marvin Lewis.

As the saying go First time shame on you. Second time shame on me.

Posted by: Skinz | September 26, 2006 11:30 AM | Report abuse

Pierce should have made it to the 2004 pro bowl. If he was an alternate in 2005 then that's news to me. Good for him.

In 2005 Pierce had 100 tackles, 2.5 sack, and 2 INTs. Marshall had 101 tackles, 2 sacks, and 4 INTs. Given those numbers, I don't think you can fairly say that Pierce is that superior. This season Marshall seems to be all over the place and always in on the play. Just my opinion, but I think he's better now then Pierce was in 2004.

As far as Arrington, he had 95 tackles and 11 sacks in 2002. So, yeah, I'd say Marvin Lewis figured out a way to fit him into the defense. Wish Grilliams could have done the same.

Posted by: Joe in Raleigh | September 26, 2006 4:06 PM | Report abuse

"2005: Started all 13 games in which he played at middle linebacker and was voted a 1st alternate to the Pro Bowl...Before suffering a season-ending ankle injury at Philadelphia on Dec. 11,"


Marvin Lewis said he ran around like a Chicken with his head cut off.

Was he talented? No doubt. I loved Lavar drank the kool-aid and all that. But in a blitzing scheme you have to be where you are supposed to be and if your not then it doesn't matter if you have a sack on the next series. You have up 6 right there.

Posted by: Skinz | September 26, 2006 4:50 PM | Report abuse

I'm inclined to make an argument about the "advantage" of having Holdman in the right place if he's not able to make a play. But you've heard all these arguments before. And I'm a little embarrassed that I'm still taking up for LaVar a year later. So I think I'll just drop it and move on to new blog entries. Let's hope McIntosh ends up being the guy that is in the right place AND knocks people silly.

Posted by: Joe in Raleigh | September 26, 2006 5:56 PM | Report abuse

From Today Newark Star-Ledger:

The growing sentiment that LaVar Arrington is being used incorrectly could become a public outcry that the Giants signed the wrong player -- one whose talent might not fit their defensive scheme.
-- Newark Star-Ledger

It's a recurring theme Joe

Posted by: Skinz | September 27, 2006 12:15 PM | Report abuse

The Giants have a defensive scheme? News to me.

Posted by: Joe in Raleigh | September 28, 2006 5:59 PM | Report abuse

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