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Todd Yoder Attributes His Success To Chris Cooley. Sort Of.

Posted by Matt Terl on November 15, 2009 – 8:09 pm

It’s been awhile since Todd Yoder had two touchdowns in a season. “In a season?” he said. “Tampa, my fourth year, actually, two in the same game — in this stadium. Washington.”

The date was October 12, 2003. Outkast’s “Hey Ya!” was climbing the charts. The Red Sox and Yankees were in the middle of a heated ALCS, which the Yankees would eventually win, thus prolonging the story of the Red Sox “curse” and launching seven years of non-stop Yankees/Red Sox coverage on ESPN.

And young Todd Yoder came to FedExField with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and caught the first two touchdown passes of his career from Brad Johnson, ending with 28 yards and two touchdowns. From the ESPN game recap: Read more »

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Andre Carter And Brian Orakpo Continue Their Sack Race

Posted by Matt Terl on November 15, 2009 – 7:01 pm

Andre Carter came into this game leading the Redskins with 6.5 sacks on the season, 2.5 more than he had in all of 2009. Brian Orakpo came into this game leading all NFL rookies with 5.5 sacks — trailing Carter by one for the team lead. The Broncos, meanwhile, had allowed 13 sacks all year. Something had to give … and what gave turned out to be Denver quarterback Kyle Orton’s ankle. Read more »

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DeAngelo Hall Still Feels Good About Pitching The Ball

Posted by Matt Terl on November 15, 2009 – 6:12 pm

When DeAngelo Hall pitched the ball to LaRon Landry at the end of his interception return, I was skeptical — and I wasn’t the only one. Professional Redskins critic John Riggins, presumably tweeting from the woodpile behind his house, wrote “you can’t win with guys that think like D-hall…it’s all about them….”

I didn’t feel quite that strongly about it, but as far as I’m concerned, the fewer moving parts on a play like that, the better. The key, to me, is not losing the ball.

And this wasn’t a play that had gotten a lot of work in practice. “Nah, man,” Landry told me. “It just happened. I asked him to pitch it.” Landry shook his head. “I didn’t think he was gonna DO it, though.” Read more »

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Redskins vs. Broncos – Fourth Quarter Thoughts

Posted by Matt Terl on November 15, 2009 – 3:51 pm

Intern Jay summed it up as he set off for the locker room: “Two words,” he said. “Much. Needed.”

That’s about all there is to say. The Redskins ran the ball, scored points, and — shock of shocks — won. I’ll have more later; now it’s time to go down to locker room and post-game interviews. Which should be happy, for once this year. Read more »

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Redskins vs. Broncos – Third Quarter Thoughts

Posted by Matt Terl on November 15, 2009 – 3:18 pm

Via Fanhouse, the Redskins’ second-quarter, fourth-and-20 Hunter Smith touchdown pass, because it is awesome.

Unfortunately, nothing quite so awesome happened in the third quarter. In fact, there was only one play that I thought was worth of particular note, and it wasn’t a positive one.

With 4:37 left in the third quarter and the Redskins facing fourth-and-a-VERY-short-1 on Denver’s 28 yard line, the team lined up to go for it. Everyone I could hear in the press box was calling for a quarterback sneak. Everyone I’ve heard from on Twitter was calling for the QB sneak. Jason Campbell appeared to check out of the play, and the play that was run was another stretch play down the line for minus-2 yards.

Here’s what I don’t like:

First, you’re trailing by three. You’re in Shaun Suisham‘s range. Take the tie and continue to play. So, one, I’m not a fan of going for it.

Second … the makeshift offensive line has been doing a heck of a job opening up holes for Ladell Betts and Rock Cartwright. The edge runs haven’t been quite so scuccessful. If you need to check out of the QB sneak — if that’s even what happened — the running play along the line of scrimmage just … just by sheer geometry, that’s not the route to the first-down marker that makes sense.

Other than that, honestly, there was a lot to like about this quarter. But I REALLY didn’t like that. Read more »

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Redskins vs. Broncos – Second Quarter Thoughts

Posted by Matt Terl on November 15, 2009 – 2:37 pm

This photo of Hunter Smith doesn’t actually show what was so interesting about his return, of course. By throwing a touchdown pass to Mike Sellers on fourth-and-20, he becomes the first non-QB to throw a touchdown for the 2009 Redskins, the first member of the 2009 Redskins to both throw AND run for touchdowns — AND he records his first NFL pass. Not too bad.

There were, despite the fact that the Redskins trail by 3, even more positives in the second quarter:

  • The revamped offensive line still didn’t give up a sack.
  • The defense seems, for the most part, to have stopped giving up long touchdown to Brandon Marshall.
  • Fred Smoot is seeing increased playing time, which will hopefully lead to the end of his media boycott.
  • Brian Orakpo continues to make good plays, although he too is without a sack through the first half.
  • Quinton Ganther, the guy I referred to as an “infinitieth string” running back, was able to contribute a bit, including a very nice block.
  • Lorenzo Alexander continues to have a good game, forcing a fumble and making a huge tackle on special teams.

But the best thing — by FAR, as far as I was concerned — was how nice it was seeing, for the first time in what seems like forever, the fans stand up and cheer the Redskins off the field in the first half. Now if the team could just take those positives — and that fan goodwill — and turn it into a freakin’ win…. Read more »

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Redskins vs. Broncos – First Quarter Thoughts

Posted by Matt Terl on November 15, 2009 – 1:42 pm

Yes, the team is losing. Yes, the cornerbacks look more or less completely perplexed by the idea that some little-known guy named Brandon Marshall has caught the ball deep for two touchdowns. Yes, the offense has looked frustrated in their last couple possessions. Read more »

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Redskins Revise FedExField Sign Policy

Posted by Matt Terl on November 15, 2009 – 10:30 am

Good news: your voices have been heard. Effective starting with today’s game against the Broncos, the FedExField sign policy has been revised: any signs that remain within the bounds of good taste and don’t block other people’s view will be allowed in the stadium. Here’s the release from the team:

The Washington Redskins announced that they have revised the policy concerning signs in their stadium to bring it in line with earlier announced rules governing messages on clothing.

“We have no intention of trying to control our fans’ varied ways of expressing their views on the Redskins organization and the team’s performance,” said David Donovan, the team’s Chief Operating Officer, who has overall responsibility for the stadium.

“We’ve disappointed our fans so far this season, and I’m as disappointed as they are,” said team Owner Daniel M. Snyder. “I understand that some fans want to express their feelings with signs and they should do so, as long as they stay within the boundaries of good taste and don’t block the view of other fans.”

Read more »

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Sunday, November 15: Redskins vs. Broncos, Today, And When It Really Mattered

Posted by Matt Terl on November 15, 2009 – 9:48 am

Jamie Mottram of Mister Irrelevant had an excellent idea of how to get ready for a Redskins/Broncos game: by watching the Redskins play one of the greatest quarters in football history against the Broncos more than twenty years ago. If the 2009 Redskins could do in a full game just two-thirds of what happened in the second quarter of Super Bowl XXII, their record would be much, much better.

Meanwhile, as always, follow on Twitter — or on the Twackle module after the jump — for updates from me (@redskinsblog), Gary (@redskinsdotcom), and Larry Weisman (@LarryWeisman). Read more »

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