Week 9: The Collapse

The only positive thing I can say about the Redskins 21-13 loss to the Panthers is that it was a beautiful day for football. The rest of it was just ugly. The previously exhilarating Redskins offense came unglued while the defense continued to implode. As kids, we were taught that if we didn’t have anything nice to say, we just shouldn’t say anything at all. I won’t go mute on you, but I have almost nothing nice to say so I will keep it to a minimum.

Shooting Own Foot
We are dooming ourselves with penalties this season. It is no secret that Washington is the most penalized team in the league with 75 penalties on the year. They went into Sunday’s game with with 62 penalties and added 13 more against Carolina, costing them a whopping 97 yards. The Redskins are averaging over eight penalties per game and the penalties aren’t just costing them yards. This week the penalties cost the team two TDs in one drive. Two. While I questioned a few of flags against Washington, there is no denying that the Redskins have a serious discipline problem and it needs to be addressed.

Play Calling
Bad Kyle has reemerged to wreak havoc on our offense. The first drive of the game was moving down the field, after being saved by a personal foul penalty by the Panthers, until it hit 3rd and 9 and we opted for a backfield pitch to Moss. It is no wonder this team struggles on third downs. We consistently face 3rd and long and opt for a run or a ridiculous trick play that the defense inevitably sniffs out and thwarts. We went to Brandon Banks twice on Sunday in third down red zone situations and, shockingly, both failed. I appreciate Kyle’s attempts at creativity, as well as the desire to form an offense around Griffin’s strengths and existing knowledge base, but we need to get serious about implementing an offensive strategy that can establish some consistent production for the long term.

Nothing to Banks On
I’m done. No more. I was somewhat surprised, and more than a little disappointed, when Banks made the roster this year. I am all for giving a guy a chance, but his chances have run out. Banks has not been able to produce anything in the return game all year and is turning into far more of a liability than an asset. He is running laterally, bringing Redskins fans flashbacks of Randle El’s favorite return move, and is too small to break any tackle or make push offs to gain an extra few yards. As for his contributions on offense, see above. People like Banks for his scrappy character and the few flashes of speed he once exhibited, but it is time to let him go.

Cam to the NBA?
I know he’s been called a diva before, but that cat really does have some sass. You even look at him sideways and he is going to start flailing for a flag like you stole his lunch money. He must take private lessons from the flop-happy NBA.

Other Random Asides
I like Josh Morgan more each week. Dude is tough. And we’ll need him even more if Garçon really does have foot surgery.

Remember Logan Paulsen’s Q3 catch? The one that was ultimately overturned and ruled incomplete. And did you watch MNF Eagles vs. Saints and see a strikingly similar play confirmed a catch? Just saying.

The best way to encapsulate the game in one statement? We gave Carolina WR Steve Smith his first TD of the season. That is such a Redskins thing to do. The Redskins are headed into the bye where we can only hope they have some much needed R&R and a serious regrouping.

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