The 5th Quarter: Eagles @ Redskins

Updated: September 9, 2013
The 5th Quarter

Eagles celebrateIT WAS OVER WHEN… Let’s see, what time did the game start? About 45 minutes after that. Apart from a fluky play the defense made early in the game to take a seven point lead, the Redskins were never in this game. They got run off the field on offense, defense and special teams. This will go down in history as one of the worst performances in Redskins history. I think I saw the ghost of Jim Zorn stalking the Redskins sidelines. This was worse than the worst of the Jim Zorn era. I hope I never see the Eagles playing the Redskins on Monday Night Football ever again. [If you want to get picky, it was truly, truly over when the Robert Griffin III threw incomplete to WR Aldrick Robinson on fourth and fifteen with just under 7 minutes to go.

I LIKED... Almost nothing. I thought ILB Perry Riley played pretty well, registering a sack and a team-high 8 tackles. He almost had another sack.

WR Leonard Hankerson might be finally waking up. He caught 5 passes for 80 yards and 2 TD.

Goal to go efficiency was two for two, which is good, but the Skins just weren't in enough goal-to-go situations.

I DID NOT LIKE... Almost everything. The Eagles rushed for 265 yards. That's... incredible. Ridiculous. Humiliating. Unacceptable. That's like what Chip Kelly did to his opponents when he was at Oregon. It's not supposed to happen in the NFL. But it did. And the Redskins had no answer for it.

The Redskins gave up 443 yards of total offense to the Eagles. Way to defend home turf, guys.

Eagles receivers were running wide open throughout the first half, a fact which was more obvious in the park than it was on television.

The Redskins did not seem ready for the Eagles tonight. "We didn't know what they were going to show on defense & they surprised us. They had a lot of looks that we weren't expecting," said WR Pierre Garcon after the game.

Robert Griffin III was very rusty. His mechanics were terrible, he threw off his back foot often, he did not move well in the pocket and he seemed fearful of the rush. "Had a serious case of the can't-get-rights" in the first half, Griffin said after the game. Griffin said he felt good and thought his lack of preseason action was not relevant, but he looked very uncertain on the field. He constantly missed throws, failing to hit open receivers and tossing some atrocious passes that were intercepted. "I'm not gonna sit here and say I was rusty. That's an excuse," said Griffin. Yes, but that doesn't mean it isn't true. The first interception, which was thrown late and deep over the middle into triple coverage, was probably the worst decision Griffin has made in his pro career. If Griffin wasn't rusty, the alternative explanation is much, much worse.

Desean JacksonThe Redskins never ran the read option tonight. That's not a coincidence. If Griffin could run it, he would have run it. Washington's offense is a lot more effective when RG3 is a threat to run, but if he is not a threat to run then the defenses will find it easier to stop the Redskins. That's what happened with the Eagles tonight. Philadelphia knew Griffin wasn't going to run the ball and they responded appropriately. This is going to be a different Redskins offense and Redskins team -- probably not for the better -- if Washington cannot run the read option.

OLB Ryan Kerrigan is being evaluated for concussion-like symptoms. We don't want to see the Redskins defense without Kerrigan in the lineup.

The Redskins offensive line was terrible, committing numerous penalties, giving up three sacks, allowing RG3 to get knocked around by the Eagles pass rush and clearing only 50 yards on 13 carries for the running backs.

The Redskins offense had a terrible time with the Eagles blitz tonight and when they used it, RG3 struggled to make plays. When the Eagles backed off after getting a big lead, Griffin had more success.

The Redskins committed 10 penalties for 75 yards. Preposterous. Week after week, year after year, this has been a problem. The Redskins are seemingly no closer to a solution.

Apparently, the NFL ordered the Redskins to put Griffin's knee brace under his uniform. That's right, during the game the NFL was calling down to the Redskins sideline to nitpick about where his knee brace was. After the game, RG3 shrugged  and said "I don't know what the league's doing. I got fined 10 grand for a shirt. I don't know."

Rookie free safety Bacarri Rambo registered a sack, but also had big problems in the open field again, repeatedly taking bad angles. He blew coverages, he missed a tackle on TE Brent Celek on a touchdown play and was bad and lazy on run support. I don't know how much longer the Redskins can keep Rambo in the lineup if he's going to play like that.

ILB London Fletcher did not play well and the Redskins made no obvious adjustments to stop the Eagles cutback runs. Philadelphia was able to run that all night [to the tune of 265 yards] and the Skins never had an answer.

WHAT IT ALL MEANS… The Redskins are 0-1 and down a home game in the division. That’s bad. Losing home games is always bad news, but losing them inside the division is the sort of thing that ruins seasons. Somehow the Redskins will have to make that up. Robert Griffin needs get his mechanics in order, shake off the rust, fix his footwork and prove that he can run the read option offense again. As I noted above, if the read option is no longer a real part of the Redskins offense, as it was not tonight, the Redskins are going to have to come up with something different — and fast.

The Redskins now have to go to Green Bay to play in one of the toughest buildings in the world and they must do it on a short week against an angry Packers team. And they might have to do it without their best defensive player, OLB Ryan Kerrigan, who was being treated for concussion-like symptoms during the game.

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