This is the moment Redskins fans have been waiting for since the trade for the number two overall pick was announced. The home debut of RGIII. In the first two weeks of the season Robert Griffin III has been everything that has been advertised and more. He has gotten it done with both his arm and his legs and has shown off tremendous poise for a rookie playing the most important position in the NFL. The Redskins lost last week because the defense had no answer for the the Rams passing attack and Josh Morgan lost his cool and drew an unsportsmanlike penalty after RGIII had led the Redskins into at position to tie the game.
It is a little confusing as to how poorly the Redskins defense has performed. The answer could be as simple as they were an easy mystery to solve. The Redskins defense is built around the pass rush. Given time and any quarterback in the NFL is going to pick apart their weak secondary, and now with Orakpo and Carriker done for the season that pass rush is going to suffer a bit putting even more pressure on the secondary. Meriweather is expected to return this weekend and having a true safety on the field could be an added benefit.
The issue that the Redskins defense is going to face this week is the Bengals offense. With Andy Dalton, AJ Green, and BenJarvus Green-Ellis the Bengals have three playmakers on the offensive side of the ball. If the Redskins struggled to stop the Rams they will be in real trouble against the Bengals. The good news for the Redskins is that of the five teams that have allowed more than their 63 points the Bengals are one of them having allowed 71 points and 869 yards through the first two games of the season.
This looks like one of those games that is going to come down to who has the ball last or who can have that one special teams or defensive play go their way. If this game comes down to special teams then the Redskins will find themselves in trouble. In both of the first two games of the season the Redskins punting unit has had a punt blocked, and in both cases it led to a score by the other team. If the Redskins hope to win this game the special teams unit is going to have to be a non-factor at the least.
It is tough to decide who should win this game. The Redskins are at home for RGIII’s debut. Judging from his personality this is a win he wants badly, but he can’t do it by himself. The defense is going to have to find a way to slow down the Bengals high powered offense. Alfred Morris is going to be a key in this one. If the Redskins can keep the ball on the ground and control the clock the Bengals offense won’t get as many chances, and the Redskins best chance to stop them may very well be to keep them off the field. When it comes right down to it the Bengals have the edge in this contest, but it isn’t enough of an edge to count out the Redskins entirely.
RGIII is a difference maker on offense. Combine his desire to win for the first time in front of the home crowd with his ability and that is a recipe for a special performance. RGIII has given the Redskins the chance to win both of their first two games and they did win one of those. If he can have another game like that then the Redskins will end up in a position to win. Whether they do it or not will be another matter entirely. The Bengals are not a bad football team, and have enough talent to where they have the edge in this one.