Jan 17, 2014, 5:49 AM EDT
Here is what you need to know on this Friday, January 17, 111 days before the NFL Draft.
The Redskins went winless against the NFC East last year and have finished last four out of the last five years. Here are five things the Redskins have to do compete in their division.
1. Stop speedy receivers—They have done pretty well against bigger, more physical receivers in the division. Players like Dez Bryant and Miles Austin have had their moments against the Redskins but players like DeSean Jackson on Philly (32 receptions, 17.9 yards/catch, 5 TD’s in 11 games) and Victor Cruz (23/15.6/1) have burned them. Their lack of speed on defense really shows here.
2. Stop tight ends—The big wide receivers have been held in check but the big tight ends haven’t. Jason Witten and Brent Celek along have gained almost 1,500 yards and have scored 10 touchdowns against the Redskins. This is a general issue for the Redskins but it gets exposed in division games because of the presence of players like Witten and Celek.
3. Make a special teams play—Yes we know this was a major problem in 2013 in general and during the loss in Dallas in particular. But prior to that six of the Redskins’ division losses were by a touchdown or less and none of those games featured a big, positive play by the Redskins special teams. A return TD, a blocked kick, just about any play from the kicking game could have turned the tide.
4. Contain scrambling QB’s—Every week before facing Romo, Vick or, last year, Foles all the talk is about keeping contain and not letting him beat you with his feet. And almost always the quarterback finds a way to beat the Redskins with his legs. It’s always easier said than done, for sure, but they need to do a better job.
5. Make clutch plays—Yes, that is straight from the keyboard of Capt. Obvious. But this has been a particularly acute problem in the division. You don’t have to look back any further than the Dallas game in December for evidence of that. It’s always the other team scoring the late touchdown (@NYG in 2012) or kicking the late field goal (Dallas 2X in 2011) to grab the win in the late going.
—It’s been 19 days since the Redskins played a game; it will be about 233 days until they play another one.
—Days until: NFL Combine 33; NFL free agency 53; Offseason workouts start 80
In case you missed it
- Did they pick the right Bengal?
- Meet your new offensive coordinator (VIDEO)
- Redskins keep Raheem Morris, name two others
- Redskins draft rewind: WR Aldrick Robinson
- Report: Skins interviewing Cowboys’ assistant Wes Phillips
- Redskins draft rewind: Adam Gettis
- Morris has one more shot at the Pro Bowl
- Five priorities for new Redskins coaches
Meet Sean McVay
Follow Us On Twitter
- Comfort level the key for Redskins' Smith as he looks for a big season
- Redskins' starting defense is sharp in small preseason sample of work
- NTK: The Redskins week that was—Roster bubble ready to pop for many
- Bryan Stork clarifies next move after days of speculation with Redskins
- Redskins cut 10 players before Tuesday deadline
- Reports: News encouraging for injured Redskins LB Ryan Kerrigan after MRI
- Cowboys fans biggest fear - Major injury strikes Tony Romo in preseason
- Former Redskins safety Dashon Goldson to work out with Falcons
- Ryan Kerrigan's early exit vs Bills shows Redskins lack of depth at edge rusher
- Redskins' Cousins both lucky and unlucky vs. Bills