I could be trolling for hits with that headline. Actually, I'm psyching myself and Hog Heaven readers that the Redskins have a shot tonight. And they do, for three reasons.
1. The Redskins are playing at home
2. Robert Griffin III is having a better year than Eli Manning
3. The Redskins defense is stingy with third-down conversions.
If this were a Giants blog, I could give you three reasons why the G-men will win and I would start with the Giants winning four of their last five games. New York was a near-miss for taking down Dallas. In the pathetic NFC Least, that's neither complimentary of the Cowboys nor a slam of the Giants.
Auburn-Alabama taught us once again that games aren't played on paper. They are played on television. This game is on prime time Sunday Night solely because the mammoth NY-DC TV market will offset the disinterest from outside the east coast.
The NFL scheduled this late-season game for Sunday Night when they and everybody else figured the Giants and Redskins to be the main contenders for the division. An old line from NFL Films put it best.
"And hopes that were high in the heat of September
can wither and die in the cold of November."
Somebody has to win this game. "Why not the Redskins" is about the best argument you can make.
Three Stats that Matter
The Redskins have been better performers than the Giants in the three stats that matter.
RGIII has out-performed Little Eli in passer rating. The Redskins allowed fewer third-down conversions than have the Giants. New York forced three more turnovers than Washington, but neither team has been disruptive enough to power a playoff run.
There's a worrisome thing about the Redskins' stat on downs. The defense does OK on third-down stops, but they are crazy bad allowing fourth-down conversions. Opponents made nine of 12 fourth-down attempts. Surely, New York's quality control interns spotted this. The Giants should not punt on fourth and short situations. That is something to watch for.
Here are the numbers for the stats that matter.
Passer rating differential
Griffin III ‒ 81.8
Manning ‒ 72.5
Redskins ‒ 10 INTs, 6 recovered fumbles = 16
Giants ‒ 12 INTs, 7 recovered fumbles = 19
Redskins ‒ 36.1%
Giants ‒ 41%
The team that does better on two of these three stats should win the game.
Hog Heaven's Magic 8-Ball says...
The Magic 8-Ball, like the team itself, hasn't covered itself in glory this year. Last week it call for a win over the 49ers.
When asked if the Redskins would beat the Giants, the 8-Ball's response was, "It is certain."
"Mooch" on the Redskins
RGIII and the Redskins were the topic of a lengthy conversation on the NFL Network this morning. They called the segment "Code Red," or something equaling alarming. Sigh. The Redskins have become the New York Jets.
The panelists rehashed all-too-familiar (to us) issues plaguing the team, but Steve Mariucci had a turn of the phrase that grabbed my attention. he said the Redskins are "playing without scholarships." Mooch cited the draft picks traded for RGIII ‒ who would have been starters at other positions ‒ and the harmful cap sanction imposed by the league. It's the same as the handicaps imposed on Southern Cal.
Any evaluation of the talent on the team, or the way they are being used, must account for the loss of scholarships.
Hog Heaven is slow to call for dismissal of Mike Shanahan. His fate rests in the hands of the players. If Shanny gets the same effort the 2009 club gave Jim Zorn in his last days, then he cannot be saved. If the team wins another three games, starting tonight on Sunday Night Football, then his role in 2014 and beyond can be discussed.
Hog Heaven contributor Greg Trippiedi wrote a few years ago that character counts most when times are toughest. Look for evidence that the players are banding together for each other. An owner can build on such a team. You don't have a team if you crack under pressure. You can blow up that assembly of people and start from scratch.
Here's what we know about Redskins coaching changes since 2000. You don't get instant results. Takes > 4 years to turn this sucka around.— Anthony Brown (@SkinsHogHeaven) November 26, 2013
Dan Snyder's tactical question is who can get us the most wins in 2014, Shanahan, or somebody new? Figure 2014 to be a(nother) lost season if we hire a new coach and build from scratch.
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Fan wants Redskins to try something new.
We haven't had a message from those hand-held thingies for awhile, but one came in this evening. We are putting this up before shutting down for the holiday.
HOG HEAVEN RESPONSE
Hey guys practice every day have trick plays we have to win rest of the games. It breaks my heart when we lose come on guys win trick them run some pass some mix it up and when ur at the touchdown rg3 run it In no field goal unless u have to thank ya
Well, that's a point. The season is reduced to entertainment value anyway. Go out there and have some fun. If any trick plays are left in the playbook. Use them.
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The NFL season is well past the half-way mark and these last few weeks are crucial for locking up those playoff bids and tickets to the postseason party. Though the Redskins have not had the most promising season thus far, their divisional competitors may still leave the door wide open, enabling any team with the will to win to climb their way to the top of the NFC East.
Week 13- Redskins vs. Giants
Led by second year Quarterback Robert Griffin III, the Skins always have amazing athletic ability on their side. Griffin’s shoulders carry a big burden, and although his performance has not reached its true potential just yet, the rest of the season just may be the tell-tale sign as to whether or not he will flourish as one of the league’s best. Matching his mixed bag of tricks against the Giants lackluster and injured defensive attack could prove to push Griffin atop the fantasy rankings for Week 13.
Griffin is an Aquarius, which is clear through his inventive acts on the offensive side of the ball. When the defense rushes the line, RG3 has the ability to scramble down the field and make spectacular plays out of failed offensive assignments. Aquarius is considered one of the most rebellious and free-spirited signs of the zodiac, so don’t expect Griffin to always color inside the lines--especially when things aren’t going the Redskins way’. The critics and the fans have expected a lot from this young man, and it is only in his control to overpower the Giants’ fairly young and limited defense. The Redskins will take the field under the lights during the Week 13 divisional match-up and look to propel themselves forward to take the division and momentum into the post-season.
Prediction: Redskins 27, Giants 17
Week 14- Redskins vs. Chiefs
The Chiefs have taken the cake as the NFL’s shocker team, and continue to up-end every team in their path. Throughout the first 10 weeks of the NFL season the Chiefs have been flawless. Led by their new Pisces Head Coach Andy Reid (formerly the long-time coach of the Philadelphia Eagles from 1999-2012), the Chiefs look mighty hard to stop on both sides of the ball. Reid has adapted to the new coaching position in perfect fashion, a clear strength of his moon sign. His devotion to his new home, city and team has not come alone, and similar to most water-signs--particular Pisces-- he has relied on another member of the team to lean on as a crutch to boost the Chiefs to the front of the division.
Quarterback Alex Smith was dusted of his starting position on the 49ers last season and has turned a completely new leaf this season. Smith is a Taurus, and remains determined and persistent to keep fighting to the top. His patient offensive attack has allowed his teammates to become confident in his abilities to drive down the field and map out week-by-week strategies.
The combination of these two, whom were both relieved of their positions on former teams has turned the Chiefs into a well-oiled machine, that will ask RG3 and the Redskin offense to perform their best if they want Week 14 to turn their way.
Prediction: Redskins 14- Chiefs 33
This article was provided to us by HollywoodPsychics. Featuring psychics with expertise in various specialties, online psychic readings from HollywoodPsychics are a convenient way to get insights and answers.
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Watching Robert Griffin III struggle with the most basic elements of quarterbacking on a national stage against the 49ers while under heavy national scrutiny for his leadership skills would have been the last straw for any engaged football fan on their season. But for the 2013 Washington Redskins, I think we need to be honest with ourselves and admit that the camel's back was broken many weeks ago. This is not a good team. It's a team that started 0-3, and won 3 of it's first 10 games against a schedule filled with homecoming opponents, and overall a very favorable injury report.
This team has won comfortably just once this season, which happened after overcoming nearly three full quarters of jitters against Matt Flynn and the Oakland Raiders. The offense has regressed severely. The defense is problematic. The special teams is worse. This is the worst Redskins team that has been fielded at any point in the last 20 years. Yes, that timeframe pre-dates Vinny Cerrato and Dan Snyder.
We can also try to frame Mike Shanahan's career in Washington in its proper context now that the full results are in. Shanahan's teams performed very poorly in his first two seasons, amassing a combined record of 11-21. There had only been one retread coach to get a team to the playoffs after starting that poorly in his first 32 games in the prior 15 years: Dick Vermiel's 1999 Rams. At the conclusion of the 2011, it sure looked like Shanahan era was too far off the rails to be saved.
So if you're coaching for your job, and you have the kind of reputation Mike Shanahan does, are you the kind of person who goes down without a fight? No, you aren't, because I just asked you a rhetorical question. Shanahan paid the absured premium to move up four draft picks for Griffin because he had no choice: he had not built a foundation, expectations were building, and he had to put a winning product on the field at all costs.
It was very costly, and the trade looked really rough nine games into the 2012 season when Shanahan's record in Washington stood at 14-27 (!) in spite of some solid play from the rookie quarterback. But then, lightning struck, the Redskins went on the 7 game run run, and Shanahan became the first retread coach since Dick Vermeil in to make the postseason after struggling through the first two years.
That run made everything rosy in Washington, but a 21-27 coaching record means that a coach is losing 4 out of every 7 games still, and the imperative was on Shanahan to help his team take the next step. Because of the way the team was built, the Redskins weren't going to be able to do that without Griffin's development. This was a defense that was built to play with a lead, and a special teams unit that was hardly built at all. The Redskins expected their passing game to take a step forward in 2013.
And its at this point that the Redskins failure to develop a passing attack AFTER trading four top 40 picks to move up and select Griffin means that they have no choice but to try something else. This team isn't close to where it needs to be or where it expected to be. Griffin looks raw, and unprepared to play football. He looks poorly coached. That may be because of a lack of quality coaching. Or it may be that he is resistant to the kind of coaching that is being offered. Either way, the Redskins have to make a move. They can't bring Griffin and Mike Shanahan back in 2013.
And knowing that, there is simply no reason to play out the string the way with the way this team has been playing. There is no high first round draft pick to lose for -- we can call that a Shanahan tax -- there is little young talent to be developed beyond Griffin. Amazingly, this Redskins team isn't just bad, it's the second oldest team in football after Detroit. As long as Griffin, David Amerson, and Jordan Reed (all starters by merit) are playing, the "youth movement" has been in effect. Leonard Hankerson is out, injured. Josh Leribus and Adam Gettis may be too unprepared to log minutes. This team hasn't developed its late round picks.
So what can the Redskins possibly do to produce meaningful evaluation in the final five games? They can do just one thing: they can fire head coach Mike Shanahan and defensive coordinator Jim Haslett, and promote Raheem Morris to interim head coach. The Redskins can give Morris five full weeks to turn the organization around, with an eye on the team's de-facto super bowl: Week 16 against Dallas against Fed Ex Field. The Redskins are on pace right now to get trounced in that game.
Maybe Morris can come in and get the players believing in themselves again. Or maybe he'll fail to do so. Either way, the last time we saw Morris as a head man on a coaching sideline, the 2011 Tampa Bay Bucs were doing a pretty good imitation of this Redskins team. These next couple weeks would be a nice referendum on Morris' development as a coach.
Most of all, a coaching change would give Redskins fans a reason to watch, a reason to come out to the games the rest of the season. Sure, it's a lost season. But that doesn't necessarily mean this has to turn into a lost decade. Positive change can start, effective immediately, with the termination of Mike Shanahan as Redskins HC. Raheem Morris is the best coaching option for this team going forward into December.no comments
Robert Griffin III has been under fire since the summer, but something is very different in recent barbs sent his way.
One story has it that Mike Shanahan preferred Ryan Tannehill to RGIII in the 2012 NFL Draft.
Another is that Griffin asked the team not to show his mistakes on video in team meetings. Hog Heaven is skeptical of both stories.
We are not shy criticizing the savior of Redskins football, but that has been for his media outreach that strikes us as undermining the team.
We also call it as we see it when his game performance affects the chance to win. Griffin's performance is that of a young player on a learning curve. We say that, too.
Redskins players have been critical, too. Pierre Garcon was indirectly so while commenting on passing game quality. Santana Moss was disappointed in RG's explanation of the INT that killed Washington's comeback in the Philadelphia game.
Former players are blunt in recent rebukes of the golden child.
But the two recent rumors are personal attacks from nowhere. That's more than a shame. That's a crime. Calling Sherlock Holmes.
Crime scene investigation
Let's put on our law & order hats to persecute the innocent and execute the usual suspects to get at the bottom of this outrage. Who had the means, motive and opportunity to commit the dastardly deed?
The opportunity test is no help. Local sports reporters are all over the Redskins. Even secretaries and water boys have opportunity. No one can be excluded as a suspect.
The means test puts us on to something. Both the Tannehill rumor and the "don't-show-my-mistakes" story point to inside knowledge of front office thinking. The video story in particular paints RG as a bratty, coach-killing diva.
Who has the strongest motive to spread these rumors? Kirk Cousins and Mike Shanahan top the chart.
Motive points its finger
Cousins did not get a start in 2012 week 16 against Dallas, or against the Seahawks in the playoff game the following week when he should have appeared after half-time. Being the good citizen is not achieving his goal to start.
A devious man would undermine RG without throwing suspicion on himself. That's out of character for Cousins whom I have followed since 2008. I need more than motive before throwing a fellow Spartan under the bus.
Mike Shanahan has been contending with Griffin all year. Coach Shanny tried to sell us on John Beck as a quality quarterback. We applauded the (deserved) humiliation he heaped on Albert Haynesworth.
With his future in Washington on the line, a head-strong quarterback who needs to be checked and a player-owner link that might need to be broken, Shanahan gains most from these stories if only to strongly deny them while appearing to back a player under siege.
The Griffin rumors are character assassination worthy of a Caesar. So is casting suspicion on Shanahan based on nothing.
Forget everything I just wrote
This has been a neat analysis to troll for hits. Means, motive and opportunity are objective ways to flesh out a suspect list. It's not enough to convict without proof.
We are bloggers, not journalists. Bloggers can draw speculative conclusions. It's who we are.
Journalists have sources. We rely on them to verify even when they tweet "stuff" on social media. Fans should be skeptical of them when sources are not named. Garcon and Moss were tied to their statements when they were first published and they stood by to clarify them.
Who told what to whom about Shanahan's preference for Ryan Tannehill? Did that come before or after Shanny chased Peyton Manning? Would Shanahan offer RG to the Dolphins in trade for Tannehill? (Would fans and owner stand still for it?)
These stories may have come from unpaid interns or from the owner himself. Everybody has devoted too many pixels to them. Stop it. Just stop it.
Criticism where deserved
Hog Heaven sees these potshots at RGIII as a rebalancing of last year's phenomenon when Griffin became a larger than life character. That's never healthy for a young man's head.
If Griffin became the media monster, we are the Frankensteins who created him. There are two lessons he's surely learned by now:
No. 1 ‒ The crowd puts you on a pedestal when you win. The crowd will knock you off when you lose.
No. 2 ‒ Sometimes you do have to suck it up and listen to your elders, and I don't mean your father who never coached a pro team.
Suck it up and grow from it, kid.
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