The Redskins Cheat Sheet takes its final voyage of the 2010 season in these first days of January. Thanks for sticking with us throughout the season, and hopefully we’ve made talking about the ‘skins just a little bit more bearable for your office conversations every Monday throughout the last few months.
I swear the above photo was tagged in our Flickr pool for the Redskins. Seriously.
With last night’s 17-14 loss to the Giants, the season came to its merciful end in potentially the most poetic moment ever: backup quarterback Rex Grossman setting back on 4th down, effing it, and going deep downfield – to a completely wide open patch of the RFK turf where no receiver was standing.
What else do you need to know to survive the last conversation about this year’s ‘skins? After the jump, come along now.
Soft Hands: Win by the turnover, lose by the turnover. Grossman dropped the ball on the carpet twice and was picked off once, and Santana Moss added another fumble after a long gain late in the game. When you have stats like that (against only one turnover by the opponent), it’s going to be challenging to put points on the board. Turnovers kill momentum, and the Redskins were never able to get settled on sustained drives with that looming overhead.
Orak-pro: It’s been incredibly easy to blame the offense for the woes this season. After all, six wins were tallied, in total, and the team never scored more than 20 points in any of them. While there were certainly defensive lapses throughout the season (see Monday Night Football against Philadelphia), generally speaking, the defense was at least putting the team in position to win games. They did last night, they did in a few other games that didn’t go the way of the ‘Skins. DeAngelo Hall will be the only member of the Redskins to make the Pro Bowl, but there’s probably a better than good case that could be made that Brian Orakpo should join him in Hawaii. Not only has he gotten to the QB plenty of times, he forces other teams to plan around him and can even generate a hold or two (see Sunday Night Football against Dallas in Week 1). With four tackles yesterday and a presence on the line, he really got in the way of the Giants.
Deflation: The Giants were playing for their playoff lives last night, and for much of the game, the scoreboard watching up to Green Bay was in full effect. However, a late touchdown by the Packers clinched that game for them, and the clocks in Lambeau hit :00 with about two minutes to go in the Redskins-Giants game yesterday afternoon. The Giants are one of two 10-6 teams who will be sitting at home while a 7-9 Seattle team hosts the 11-5 Saints (wow, NFL playoffs are messed up), and you could see the annoyance and deflation in the shoulder pads of the Big Blue as they went to stop the Redskins final drive. Luckily, as mentioned above, Rexy went downfield, so there was never a real threat.
So, that wraps up the Redskins Cheat Sheet for the year. We’ll keep using the Cheat Sheet format to get you through the playoffs over the next few weeks, and then who knows after that. Either way, the Caps are starting to gel again and pitchers and catchers is about six weeks away. Get excited.