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Three Redskins-Related Debates

Posted by Matt Terl on November 30, 2009 – 5:40 pm

With the second and third picks in the 2000 NFL Draft, the Redskins selected LaVar Arrington and Chris Samuels, respectively. The two combined for nine Pro Bowl selections, and for Samuels, this season marked the tenth that began with him as the team’s starting left tackle.

By sheer coincidence, the two are also pretty much at the center of two internet discussions from today.

The first is straightforward: as the decade comes to a close, Yahoo! Sports’ Shutdown Corner blog put up their list of the decade’s top ten draft busts, and Arrington comes in at number 7, just behind his college teammate Courtney Brown.

Two Penn State defenders went with top two picks in the first draft of the decade. Neither have played in the league since 2006

I have trouble classifying Arrington as a draft bust. He may not have become the ultra-megastar we were all envisioning when he was drafted, but he was a Pro Bowler, a strong contributor, and a presence on the field. He’s been out of the league since 2006 because of injury, so that hardly seems like a fair knock.

The other debate is a bit more complicated, but also a bit more interesting. Read more »

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Monday, November 30: Edwin Williams Reflects On His First Pro Start

Posted by Matt Terl on November 30, 2009 – 2:02 pm

This hasn’t been the greatest start to a week in Redskins history. To compound yesterday’s loss — which was disheartening enough in itself — came the news that rookie defensive lineman Jeremy Jarmon suffered an ACL tear and is joining the growing list of players on injured reserve. And — later — that Chris Cooley has joined that list as well.

(The only guys who could be remotely happy today would be Alvin “Ace” Bowen, the Compliance Linebacker, who is expected to be signed to Jarmon’s spot on the active roster, and defensive end Rob Jackson, who takes Cooley’s spot.)

One guy who might have been happy is offensive lineman Edwin Williams. He’s the undrafted rookie out of Maryland who got his first NFL start yesterday, which is a pretty big deal. And to look at the stats and see that Jason Campbell was only sacked once, you might think that the offensive line had a good day today. Unfortunately, that number is more a testament to Campbell’s underrated elusiveness than to the offensive line keeping him clean.

“I thought Edwin did … okay,” head coach Jim Zorn said during his press conference today, and that ellipsis indicates a hesitation on his part, not missing words. He didn’t sound thrilled, to be honest, and immediately turned to discussing the possibility of Mike Williams getting the start next week against New Orleans.

This somewhat disappointing review would be hard on Edwin Williams, except that his own assessment of his performance wasn’t really much more favorable.

“I don’t know,” he told me. “I kinda felt like, by my personal standard, I didn’t play very well. Pass protection was a big issue for me. As far as going against [Eagles defensive end Mike] Patterson, and the power guys, I think I was fine. But the athletic guys, [Victor] Abiamiri and [Juqua] Parker … I just don’t think I fared well against them. They were beating me with a lot of quick inside moves, moves that I know I should’ve been prepared for [but] that I didn’t do well against.”

Even what should have been his most exciting play didn’t go the way he might’ve hoped. “The goal line play,” he said, “on Jason’s touchdown run, I was supposed to be the lead blocker. I tripped on Casey Rabach’s foot and couldn’t even get out there.”

Read more »

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Redskins @ Eagles – Fourth Quarter Thoughts

Posted by Matt Terl on November 29, 2009 – 4:22 pm

Another frustrating end to another frustrating game, and it didn’t help at all that I halfway saw it coming at the end of the last post.

For the second straight week, the Redskins took a lead over a division opponent into the fourth quarter, for the second straight week the defense finally ran out of stopping power, and for the second straight week the offense was unable to move the ball down the field for so much as a field goal attempt.
Read more »

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Redskins @ Eagles – Third Quarter Thoughts

Posted by Matt Terl on November 29, 2009 – 3:23 pm

Jason Campbell is having an up-and-down game today, but credit where credit’s due: he killed it that quarter. The touchdown drive was 75% Campbell, buying time with his legs, finding guys when the play had broken down, and just generally doing all those things you want a quarterback to do. The other 25% was Fred Davis, who had a third-down catch-and-rumble down the sidelines tenacious enough that the pressbox announcer tried to call the play down eight yards before it was over.

Credit also to the Redskins defense, which has made life difficult for the Eagles even in the absence of Albert Haynesworth and DeAngelo Hall, and the non-Clinton Portis running backs as Quinton Ganther joined Marcus Mason in having a good game. (Ganther through three: 5 carries, 32 yards.)

But this is the second straight week that the Redskins have had the lead heading into the fourth, and … well, we all know how last week turned out. As the third ends, though, Redskins 21, Eagles 16. Read more »

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Redskins @ Eagles – Second Quarter Thoughts

Posted by Matt Terl on November 29, 2009 – 2:34 pm

For much of this game, it hasn’t felt like I’ve been watching the 2009 Redskins. Unlike most Redskins games this year, it’s felt competitive from the start. The team has been making the most of their opportunities. The calls have been going their way, including the nullified touchdown from the first quarter.

No, it hasn’t been flawless. Jason Campbell has been having a mixed game at best, and it seems like his play has been getting sloppier as the game has progressed. Of course, that might have something to do with the fact that Levi Jones is having a tough game pass blocking at the left tackle spot, and he’s DEFINITELY having a tougher time as the game has gone along. Read more »

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Redskins @ Eagles – First Quarter Thoughts

Posted by Matt Terl on November 29, 2009 – 1:50 pm

As you can probably guess from the presence of Chris Horton — now on injured reserve — this picture is NOT of DeSean Jackson scoring his touchdown during today’s game. No, this is Jackson scoring one of his two touchdowns during the last meeting between these teams, just over a month ago.

Jackson finished that game with one rush for 67 yards (and a touchdown), two catches for 69 yards (and a touchdown), and three punt returns (including a 29 yarder).

I know the team has been aware of Jackson. I know they’ve been gameplanning for him this week. So I’m not really clear why he already has one wide-open catch for 35 yards (and, yep, a touchdown) along with a 29-yard punt return that was a Kareem Moore tackle away from being much longer (and probably a touchdown), and has had another short touchdown nullified by a penalty.

The Redskins are primarily benefiting from two things: one is Andy Reid outsmarting himself — seriously, an onside kick on the opening kickoff? only one completed pass to Jackson? — and the other is some genuinely solid play from their injury-shredded offense. I have no idea if they’ll be able to keep it up all game, but at 10-7, the first half could’ve gone much worse. Read more »

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Follow Redskins @ Eagles on Twitter

Posted by Matt Terl on November 29, 2009 – 1:06 pm

As always, follow on Twitter — or on the Twackle module below — for updates from me (@redskinsblog), Gary Fitzgerald (@redskinsdotcom), and Larry Weisman (@LarryWeisman).

Offer your thoughts either with the gold colored respond button on the module, or in the comments section right here.

Also, returning for another outing is Redskins Gametime — virtually ALL the Redskins-related gameday content (including my stuff) in one handy interface, AND, if you’re into complete and utter sensory overload, the Redskins Powerboard is still going strong.

http://www.twackle.com/widget/generate_widget/redskins Read more »

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Sunday, November 29: A Mostly Eggless Trip To The Linc

Posted by Matt Terl on November 29, 2009 – 11:47 am

Since the Redskins are playing in Philadelphia today, I’m pretty much obligated to write something about the legendarily fierce (read: obnoxious) Philly fans. The whole “cheered a paralyzed Michael Irvin, booed Santa Claus” thing. It’s a moral imperative.

Last year, the fans threw eggs at the team buses as they approached Lincoln Financial Field, and there were kids barely older than toddlers making obscene gestures as we passed by. This year, I brought my video cameras to capture the unruly behavior for posterity (and to post here, of course).

Things, as usual, did not go as I’d hoped.


If you look carefully, the guy in the pickup truck at about 0:52 is — gasp! — giving an EMPHATIC THUMBS DOWN. And then avert your eyes at about 1:41as three passing Eagles fans WAVE ENTHUSIASTICALLY.

I dropped some Explosions In The Sky underneath the video (Track 1 from The Rescue ep; download it here) in a desperate attempt to enhance the drama, but ultimately, this was a tame, tame trip, and a correspondingly tame video.

The visit has not been TOTALLY eggless, though: there’s a lovely omelet station in the press box.

Meanwhile, here are the Redskins inactives for the game (it’s not a very encouraging list):
Read more »

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Friday Notes, Links, And An Update To The Side Dishes Thing

Posted by Matt Terl on November 27, 2009 – 2:19 pm

A few quick notes on this exciting Black Friday:

  • Per head coach Jim Zorn, DeAngelo Hall is out for Sunday’s game against the Eagle. Benched CB Carlos Rogers will get the start in his place. Albert Haynesworth is a gametime decision, Todd Yoder and H.B. Blades are questionable, and Mike Sellers was limited after being kicked during practice but should be okay by gametime. Mike Williams is expected to be available, but Edwin Williams will get the start at right guard.
  • That list, of course, does not include Clinton Portis and Chris Cooley, who have already been declared out for Sunday.
  • An URGENT UPDATE to my Thanksgiving side dishes post: Reed Doughty asked me to let the world know that his mother told him in no uncertain terms that she did NOT make Stove Top stuffing at Thanksgiving. “Sorry, mom,” Doughty said.
  • Two more links on the second anniversary of Sean Taylor‘s passing: the South Florida Sun-Sentinel’s Ethan Skolnick talked to Santana Moss about Taylor, and the Free Lance-Star’s Rich Campbell asked a few of the guys about it as well.
  • Also, because some people apparently missed in on Twitter on Wednesday, the team has signed quarterback Richard Bartel to the active roster from the Jacksonville practice squad, released practice squad QB Andre’ Woodson, and filled his spot on the squad with FB Jonathan Evans (who spent some time with the team in preseason).

Photo of Stove Top — NOT the Official Stuffing Of Reed Doughty — from Wikimedia Commons at

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A New Sean Taylor Tribute

Posted by Matt Terl on November 27, 2009 – 11:27 am

I didn’t see it in time for the last post, but the folks at Redskins Broadcast Network put together a tribute video for this second anniversary of Sean Taylor’s passing, including some impressive plays that I had forgotten. [UPDATE: I’m now being told it was made for the TV shows for the first anniversary of Taylor’s death, last year.]


Also, Larry Michael invites fans to drop off flowers or memorials at FedExField, after the jump. Read more »

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