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2016 Week 5 - Redskins @ Ravens

Blognosticator - Shi no Tenshi

Well, we’re a quarter of the way through the season. It’s been an interesting month, with us ending up with about the record most predicted at the beginning of the season, but for some reason nothing feels settled. Even at 2-2, we aren’t quite sure yet what our team is going to be. Some are high on the positives, while others are focused on all the things done wrong. Both viewpoints have been pretty accurate.

Our team is actually doing pretty well Offensively, ranked 8th in the league for offensive yards, ranked 5th for passing. The past couple weeks have even shown some hope for the run game, with the Redskins having significantly more carries than the first 2 weeks, and still keeping a decent YPC at 4.4. The general hope is that as long as Kirk can keep settled and not make the bone headed play he seems to have a need for one to two times per game, that our offense can hang with the best of them.

Jordan Reed is the real deal, and he has delivered consistently. Desean Jackson is such a threat that even when he has production of 1 catch for 5 yards, he still was worth another 70 yards from pass interference calls from threatening the cornerbacks. Jamison Crowder can show up at any time to bust a large gain, and Garçon is a steadying presence. As long as Kirk gets them the ball, we’re a threat to score at any range.

Our defense, however, is another story. Nobody thinks they are going to stop the opposition, and for good reason. Opponents average 8 yards per pass and nearly 5 yards per carry on them. Other teams convert 57% of their 3rd downs. Tackles are missed consistently, with opposition RBs being able to get out of their backfield even when hit initially behind the line of scrimmage.

The defense has had one thing going for it. We’re +3 for turnovers. While they can’t seem to tackle anybody, they have been quite good the past 2 games of getting the ball away from the opposition, even on occasion when the opposition is standing next to the pile with it. And that is the key to any victory we are going to have against the Ravens.

The Ravens have the #1 Defense in the league currently. Luckily, Gruden and Co have a blueprint from the Raiders showing how to move the ball. The Ravens got that defensive rankings against the “stellar” offenses of Buffalo, Cleveland, Jacksonville, and Oakland. Two of those are in the basement with their offenses, and only Oakland has been a consistent threat. I think the Ravens are going to have their work cut out for them, and we will be able to score.

All we need is Kirk to not throw picks, which will be difficult against the team that has the second most in the league (with 5). The best QB the Ravens faced, however, was Derek Carr, who threw for 4 TDs and no INTs. There’s definitely hope, as Kirk is easily better than the other 3(Taylor, whoever Cleveland serves up to die on any given day, and Bortles).

Our defense, however, is where things will be decided. We will not be able to stop them at times. It’s a matter if we can score when we need to, and get turnovers again. Oakland forced 3 fumbles, but only recovered 1. Flacco has thrown 4 picks, so he isn’t taking the best care of the ball either. He can burn us down the field, however, if he is given the time and blown coverages we’ve shown previously.

Either way this is going to be a rather close game. Their kicker is as dangerous as ours, so likely it will go down to an FG to win it. Luckily, our D has been turnover happy lately. If that continues, and we get the timely takeaway down the stretch, Redskins will win 27-24.

It’s going to be an angst-y game, and many of us will hit the 4th quarter exasperated with things not going as well as they should, but this game is completely winnable. And frankly, the Ravens have it coming.
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As we enjoy today's conversations, let's remember our dear friends 'Docsandy', Sandy Zier-Teitler, and 'Posse Lover', Michael Huffman, who would dearly love to be here with us today! We love and miss you guys ❤

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