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Week One Grades, Evaluations, Questions

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Greetings from the international headquarters of BBQ.

Week one is in the books and now we take a look at how the entire team fared against the Steelers. It was a contest that started on a high note, but progressed into a shameful display of ineptitude. We will try to make some sense of it all as BBQ hands out grades, evaluations and questions. Feel free to offer your own grades, evaluations, questions, and opinions.

BBQ has revised this format a bit. Let us know what you like or dislike about it.

Let’s take a look at week one.

Quarterbacks:
Question: Why does Kirk Cousins struggle against better teams?
Answer: It’s simple. They are better on defense than teams that are subpar. Kirk struggled for two other reasons – he couldn’t get a good handle on the zone defense that the Steelers employed and the center was being forced back towards him at various times.
Grade: D

Running Backs:
Question: Is this going to be another season of a poor rushing attack?
Answer: It looks that way. Matt Jones often went the opposite direction on plays designed to go elsewhere and gained little or nothing. He did have a couple of good runs. Chris Thompson scored a rushing touchdown. BBQ would like to see more of Robert Kelley – possibly as the starter.
Grade: F

Wide Receivers:
Question: Why didn’t Redskins receivers catch any long passes?
Answer: The Steelers defense (zone) was designed to stop it in this game. DeSean Jackson did have a good night and turned some shorter passes into respectable gains. Josh Doctson had one catch, but was never a factor.
Grade: C

Tight Ends:
Question: Was this the best unit overall?
Answer: Yes. Jordan Reed starts the season on a high note. Vernon Davis was good in limited duty and the blocking was solid.
Grade: B

Offensive Line:
Question: Was this the worst unit overall?
Answer: No, but it didn’t fare too well. Trent Williams had a horrible night. Kory Lichtensteiger is finished and it is just a matter of time until he is replaced. The right side did a respectable job and Shawn Lauvao had very good game.
Grade: D

Defensive Line:
Question: Ok, how about this group - was it the worst unit overall?
Answer: Yes. Emphatically yes. If improvements don’t come quickly to the defensive line, the Redskins will win no more than six games. Allowing a thirty-three year old running back 143 yards and easy touchdowns is inexcusable.
Grade: F

Linebackers:
Question: Do the linebackers get any pay from the defensive linemen?
Answer: Probably not, but they deserve hazardous duty bonuses from the defensive line. Ryan Kerrigan should’ve pounced on a fumble and not try to run with it. Preston Smith needs to get more pressure off the edge.
Grade: C-

Cornerbacks:
Question: What happened to this highly touted cornerback corps?
Answer: It’s simple. Poor defensive scheme and asking your number two corner to guard the best receiver in football. That’s what happened.
Grade: D

Safeties:
Question: Why were the safeties so inadequate?
Answer: They lined up wrong at times and it would seem like they were on the opposite side of the field on some plays. DeAngelo Hall is a converted corner who seems lost periodically and is too slow. David Bruton is a career backup at the position and it shows.
Grade: F

Special Teams:
Question: Will special teams be the only unit to shine this year?
Answer: It’s possible, but unlikely. Special teams is a strength of the Redskins and most of the time they will look very good. There were no glaring mistakes other than the extra point unit not being ready.
Grade: B

Coaching:
Question: Is this team still stuck in rebuild mode?
Answer: The short answer is in the affirmative. Too, the long answer is the same. While last year was nice, fans must realize that this team is still in a rebuild. The safeties need a major upgrade. The defensive line needs a massive overhaul. Running backs need many changes and Robert Kelley deserves a chance. A new center is warranted. Quarterback is still unsettled. Receiving corps may need attention. Finally, the coaching staff should be on notice. Silly penalties are the standard for cellar dwellers, not division champions.
Grade: F

How would you grade each position and the coaching staff? Do you expect any other changes on the defensive line as Cullen Jenkins returns? Would you like to see more of Robert Kelley? It’s just one game, but what alarms you right now? Has the number of wins and losses that you predicted just a week ago change in any way? On to game two.

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

Hail to the Redskins!
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