"You play ... to win ... the game." ~ Herm Edwards
Read between the lines of Redskins-Giants game recaps, and you come to this – Robert Griffin III looked good in the loss to the Super Bowl Champs. That's "RGIII looked good," not the Redskins. The world expects the Redskins to finish fourth in the Beast. To change that perception, the Redskins had to beat the Giants. The point of playing the game is to beat division opponents, not to make RGIII look good.
Coach Edwards told us that already. I presume our heroes heard the same from Coach Mike Shanahan. Otherwise, the Giants game was just a pretty loss that made the Giants look good.
As players, coaches, and fans, lets not be satisfied with wasting chances to win that RGIII gives us. I have no idea how the Redskins will do against the Steelers, but expect that Griffin will lead a late fourth-quarter charge downfield for the win. Don't waste the opportunity, fellas. Hog Heaven has had its fill of moral victories.
Ugly wins are always better than pretty losses. ~ Me— Anthony Brown (@SkinsHogHeaven) October 23, 2012
Real life is intruding again, so we are taking the easy out on the Steelers game by pointing to what other people say.
"After nearly helping the Washington Redskins knock off the defending a Super Bowl champion, Robert Griffin III's next challenge is against one of the NFL's stingiest defenses."
See what I mean? Robert Griffin III nearly beat the Giants and he alone might beat a team nobody expects the Redskins to beat. because, you know, they haven't won in Pittsburgh since '91. I'm not knocking Griffin the Great. I'm still giddy as a schoolgirl that he's a Redskin. (Yeah, I said that word.) The Redskins team has to step up to Griffin's performance.
"2.) Fletcher’s health – Inside linebacker London Fletcher missed a significant portion of the second half of Sunday’s game after suffering a hamstring injury. That left a big void –
"5.) Planning for Pittsburgh – When it comes to yardage, the Steelers own one of the stingiest defense in the league.... Which offense will [the Redskins] attack the Steelers with: the option-heavy attack seen last week, or the more traditional scheme with which they also have shown they have an ability to succeed?"
Mike Jones, The Post's Redskins beat writer, is still the authoritative voice on the team.
"The Washington Redskins have such a promising future right now that it's almost easy to accept that 2012 might not be their year. After all, the 'Skins have dropped four of their seven games despite having led or been tied in the fourth quarter of each of them."
I'm no fan of Bleacher Report who parlay over-the-top headlines to free content into something Google sees as authoritative. The rage is at Google for letting it's search engine be easily fooled. Bleacher Report is rushing to upgrade writing talent for true validity before Google catches on.. Greg Gagnon is one of the better football writers. Greg covers the NFC East for B/R, and he contributes to the This Given Sunday blog. (Disclosure: So do I.) I read Greg's work and so should you. Take a peek at This Given Sunday sometimes, too.
Greg takes a glass half-empty and half-full approach in this B/R story. That's Washington in a nutshell.
"PREDICTION: Steelers 22-17
"KEYS TO THE GAME: The Redskins would do their injury-ravaged defense a solid favor by getting off to a quick start – easy to say, but Washington has failed to score an opening-drive touchdown all season."
This gives you all the blah-blah about the two teams that Hog Heaven might have offered, given time to do so. They look at how Niles Paul's role may change with Chris Cooley's return.
Hog Heaven made its thoughts plain earlier this week. Paul has until the BYE to step up, or we should see more of Capt. Chaos. Cooley tried to negotiate a case of his beer into his contract, just what Riggins might have done. Sounds like my kind of guy, and why Redskins fans love them both.
"Pittsburgh's illustrious 3-4 defense serves as the model for Washington's one-gap version of the 3-4. Redskins defensive coordinator Jim Haslett was Pittsburgh's defensive coordinator from 1997-99. His predecessor in Pittsburgh, Dick LeBeau, returned to the Steelers in 2004 and has been their defensive coordinator ever since.
"Haslett brought many of Pittsburgh's concepts to the Redskins when he and coach Mike Shanahan overhauled the scheme in 2010."
'Skins fans won't want to hear this, but Haslett's familiarity with the Pittsburgh system is why he should not be fired at the end of the season. Yes, the Redskins defense should perform better three years into Haslett's run. Bringing someone else in resets the clock to zero in transition time. Don't go there.
There is something off about the defense. Injuries at the safety position could be part if it certainly ... or, it might have something to do with the Jim Haslett-Raheem Morris dynamic. Stay tuned.
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