Redskins Report Card: 10/29/17

The Washington Redskins lost to the Dallas Cowboys at home 33-19. The Redskins secondary handled Dak Prescott surprisingly well, but could not control Ezekiel Elliot and several special teams mistakes really did the Redskins in.

Quarterback: As per usual, Cousins led the Redskins downfield for a score their first drive, but after that field goal Cousins was less sharp. He failed to throw a touchdown until the fourth quarter, when he hit Josh Doctson for a one yard TD. Cousins was 26 for 39 with one touchdown, one interception, and a fumble. While the conditions were hard to throw in, Cousins underperformed. Grade C+

Running Backs: It’s hard to judge the Redskins duo of Rob Kelley and Chris Thompson when they only combine for 12 rushing attempts. The duo only rushed for 37 yards on these 12 attempts (3.08 yards per carry), but Kelley added a TD and Thompson continued to be a huge factor in the passing game (eight receptions for 76 yards). Grade B-

Receivers: It certainly hurt the Redskins to lose Jordan Reed to injury in the second quarter. The star tight end did not return to the game. After publicly apologizing to Redskins’ fans for his poor performance and promising to do better, Terrelle Pryor had zero receptions. On the bright side, Jamison Crowder looked like the WR1 that they had hoped Pryor would be, hauling in nine receptions for 123 yards. Grade B-

Offensive line: While they are plagued with injuries (Trent Williams, Spencer Long, and Brandon Scherff), the OL played poorly today, allowing the Cowboys to sack Cousins four times. We wouldn’t expect much else, with two rookies starting and making their NFL debuts, but the Cowboys powerful rush defense hurt the Redskins all game long. Grade D+

Defensive line: With no Jonathon Allen, it was hard enough. Losing Matt Ioannidis, who has been consistent in recent weeks, certainly didn’t help. Ezekiel Elliot cut up the DL the whole game for 150 yards rushing and two touchdowns. On a positive note, Dak Prescott did not have as much time to drop back as he would have liked. Grade C+

Linebackers: Another week, another Ryan Kerrigan sack. The linebackers did a good job this week rushing and in coverage. There were a few instances of Ezekiel Elliot breaking through for first downs that should have been shorter gains, but that is really just Zeke being Zeke. Grade A-

Secondary: Surprisingly, the secondary was lockdown today. Whether Josh Norman returning added confidence or actually just locks down opponents…the secondary allowed only 143 passing yards and zero TDs. Grade A

Special Teams: The sloppy play of the special teams unit left almost no chance at a win today. Allowing a blocked field goal to be returned 86 yards in the second quarter led to a one yard Zeke TD run, making the score 14-13 Cowboys, instead of 16-7 Redskins if Nick Rose had made the field goal. Chris Thompson fumbled on a kickoff, giving the Cowboys great position. Nick Rose missed a field goal and an extra point. Grade F

Coaching Staff: The coaches need to realize when the conditions are hard to pass in. Only allowing the Redskins duo of RBs twelve rushes is ill-advised, and while Kirk Cousins did okay given the tough conditions, they really should have drawn up some more plays for Rob Kelley and Chris Thompson. Grade B-

Overall: The game turned in the second quarter after the blocked field goal and the one yard TD run. The Redskins never had a lead the rest of the game. The Redskins defense got Josh Norman back, but is still plagued with injury, and it showed tonight. The same goes for the offensive line. It was a sloppily-played game, with a few bright spots. Grade C

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