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Week Five Grades, Evaluations, Questions

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Week five is in the books and now we take a look at how the entire team fared against the Falcons. The blame game. Some are in this camp. Some are in that camp. However, we will try to make some sense of it all as BBQ hands out grades and evaluations. Feel free to offer your own grades, evaluations, and opinions. Also, we have some questions to close out week five.

Lets take a look at the grades.

Quarterbacks:
Kirk Cousins was inaccurate at times as receivers had to stretch one way or another as several tosses were simply off the mark. The final drive of regulation was nothing but perfection. Thoughts on the final pass are posted below.
Grade: C

Running Backs:
The running game was stuffed by the Falcons defense as they were willing to live by the run and die by the pass just as the Eagles did the prior week. However, there were no fourth quarter heroics or any long runs whatsoever. The group played uninspired all day and looked lethargic.
Grade: F

Wide Receivers:
Its difficult to give this group a poor grade when you consider that they are not contortionists. Jamison Crowder is the real deal and he has certainly claimed the slot position as his own. Pierre Garcon had a good day and couldve been better with accurate throws. Ryan Grant did not run his route properly in overtime and likely makes the catch on a play that ended the game. His poor mechanics cost the team a win.
Grade: B-

Tight Ends:
Derek Carrier did have an early touchdown, but the team obviously misses Jordan Reed and Niles Paul. Anthony McCoy is not the answer and a waiver wire pickup may be needed soon.
Grade: C

Offensive Line:
This unit struggled mightily in the running game and was adequate in the passing attack. Kory Lichtenstiger really struggled and looked as if he was playing with lead shoes on his feet filled with cement.
Grade: D+

Defensive Line:
They disappeared on Sunday in the second half. Devonta Freeman carved this group to the tune of 197 total yards. They suddenly looked old and unpolished. The pass rush was decent as they opened lanes for the linebackers and one fumble/sack was caused/recovered, but little else stood out.
Grade: D+

Linebackers:
Ryan Kerrigan looks as if he is shedding the early season rust as he had two sacks and a few quarterback hurries. The rest of this unit struggled with a tight end in the first half and looked to be out of position at other times.
Grade: C-

Cornerbacks:
The corners were stellar and able to neutralize the dynamic Julio Jones. Bashaud Breeland has likely solidified his starting position as he provided a spark with an interception return of nearly thirty yards. Kyshoen Jarrett continues to impress and Will Blackmon could be a key player in nickel and dime packages when Chris Culliver returns.
Grade: A

Safeties:
They safeties had a decent day. Dashon Goldson was simply excellent although he did allow former Redskin Leonard Hankerson a free ride to the endzone, but the pass was overthrown. Trent Robinson had an interception, but did struggle with the running game and intermediate passes.
Grade: B-

Special Teams:
We could nitpick about a missed fifty-four yard field goal, but Dustin Hopkins did nail one for fifty-two yards as time expired in the fourth quarter. His kickoffs were excellent. Tress Way had his best game of the season to date with an average of just over fifty yards on four punts. Two of them were downed inside the twenty yard line including one inside the ten.
Grade: A-

Coaching:
Lets be honest. The speed sweep does not work in todays NFL. A few years ago, that play would be good for twelve or fifteen yards. It needs to be wiped from the playbook. Screen passes on third down near the goal line is simply wrong. Throwing screens on third and long is usually a poor idea as well. Second and long is much better for screens and that was not attempted to our recollection. Allowing the opposing running back nearly 200 total yards against such a good defense was simply inexcusable. The team needed to focus a bit more on the running game and less on the passing defense (their stud receiver was limited due to injury). Special teams were solid.

All of that being said, the game plan was pretty good. They shouldve beaten one of the most explosive teams in the NFL. We cant hate too much on the staff, just a few issues under the circumstances.
Grade: C+

How would you grade each position and the coaching staff? After nearly pulling off the upset, are these Redskins ready to knock off the Jets in week six? How much does the team miss DeSean Jackson? Has Ryan Grant reached his ceiling and is he simply too slow for the NFL? Will the Redskins take a stud receiver in round one next year? Did Kirk Cousins take another step backwards with his throws or is this part of the learning/growing process? What are you expecting in the game with the Jets? On to game six.

See you again next week with grades, evaluations, and questions.

Hail to the Redskins!
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