McNabb, Redskins all smiles after blowout

First of all, apologies that I haven't updated this space as much as I should have. Busy times. And I promise to try and keep this as updated as needed. But if you want even more of my Redskins comments, I highly recommend you find me on Twitter: @EatSleepRedskin.

Anyway, let's talk football.

The Redskins opened up their 2010 (pre)season with a 42-17 crushing of the Buffalo Bills, who, like the Redskins, have a brand new head coach with a brand new offense and defense. I know Redskins fans will get very excited about the win, but one thing is clear after watching the game: The Skins, under Mike Shanahan, are light years ahead of the Bills under Chan Gailey. This is not to say that the win wasn't impressive, but keep in mind the starters only played about one quarter. New Redskin Donovan McNabb and the offense were merely average at that point.

General comments about the offense:
One thing that was clear to me Friday night was the team's crispness. By that I mean how the offense got in and out of the huddle. There wasn't any hurrying or moments where the team seemed confused. McNabb (and backup Rex Grossman) seemed to know where everyone was and what they were doing. That's a big step up from previous seasons under the constantly confused Jim Zorn.

General comments about the defense:
Alright I'll say it: The run defense worries me. The Bills averaged 8.1 yards a carry as a team, and that's a scary number. Andre Carter particularly looked out of place at times, coming too wide and allowing RBs to scoot inside for big gains. Perhaps this isn't a trend that will continue. Perhaps as Albert Haynesworth gains back his starting duties, the defense will be able to stop the run. When I first heard that the Skins were going to a 3-4 base for the first time in team history, it was welcome news. I, like most Redskins fans, had grown tired of Greg Blache's "bend but don't break" defense, which was about as boring as watching paint dry. The 3-4 we saw Friday night showed pass-rushing promise, but the Bills runners were able to run wild.

Individual honors
Those that I thought improved their stock immensely against the Bills:

Brandon Banks. Banks is tiny. 5-7ish. 150ish. Tiny. The only way this guy is making the team is with standout play on returns and maybe some good plays on offense. His return ability is obviously tremendous. (Does he return kicks, too? No. Seriously.) He'll eventually have to show he has some usefulness on offense too. But there are three more games to play.

Trent Williams. The rookie showed he can play. Didn't allow any of the Bills rushers to get near McNabb or Grossman. The offensive line, as a whole, stood out to me. They didn't allow a sack until the fourth quarter. Poor John Beck. If Williams continues to show what he did on Friday night, the Redskins should be set at LT for the next decade or more.

Ryan Torain and Keiland Williams. With Larry Johnson and Willie Parker both intentionally held out of the game, Torain and Williams got most of the work Friday night, and while neither stood out, both showed flash enough to play in the NFL. The battle to back up Clinton Portis andJohnson (who has shined in camp) will get very interesting as the preseason goes on.

Biggest question mark
Well, maybe not the biggest, but who the heck will be returning kicks this season for the Redskins? Certainly, it won't be Devin Thomas, who muffed one kickoff and looked shaky on another. I'd like to see Banks get a look there.

That's all for now. Hit me with some feedback.

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