Well, the Washington Redskins lost to the Eagles 30-17 and fans are irate about their team. The majority of the scrutiny for the Redskins has fallen on the quarterback, Kirk Cousins, but he was not the only one that should take the blame. The Redskins are in a weird year because they will go as far as Kirk Cousins takes them, but he needs support. I have a few takeaways from the first week in their season.
Offensive Line Took A Step Back
The Redskins allowed only 23 sacks last year and against the Eagles, they allowed four. Morgan Moses was beaten badly by Brandon Graham for a strip sack that eventually sealed the game. This was not the only problem, but it was the cherry on top.
Throughout the entire game, the Eagles forced the Redskins to throw the football under constant pressure. They could not get any movement in the trenches and Cousins was running for his life. Fletcher Cox, Brandon Graham, and Timmy Jernigan were phenomenal and they made this line look pedestrian. Now, they will not face a front seven like this all year, but it is cause for concern. If the Redskins cannot fix this issue then this season will eventually swirl down the tank.
Terrelle Pryor Will Not Fix This Receiving Corps
DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon do not play for the Redskins, but I know Jay Gruden wish they did after that game. Cousins threw the ball forty times and he completed only 23 of them. Pryor was pegged as the replacement for both receivers, but he could not make much of an impact. Cousins targeted him and his RBs 22 times and it showed. The Eagles do not have a great defensive backfield and, Cousins could not get the ball to any of his receivers. Pryor is a big guy, but too much of the offense ran through him on Sunday. They must find a second outside receiver and it should be, Josh Doctson, from TCU but who knows?
The Defense Is Improved
The Redskins defense was good against the Eagles, and they should hang their heads high. Ryan Kerrigan took an interception for a touchdown that fooled Carson Wentz, but they have to get off the field faster. You have to contribute that to the offense not being able to sustain long drives. The Redskins were able to stuff the Eagles running game, but now they must make some changes in their secondary. Josh Norman was able to limit Alshon Jeffery, but Wentz went to the guys in the slot and his tight end consistently. If they can improve how they defend the slot than this defense could carry the offense while it figures things out.
It is easy to overreact to what you saw during Week 1. The Redskins can improve everywhere, but Cousins must play well. I do think this will be a long season for them because that offensive line looks like it has regressed. If it has, then this team will wonder what happened to them. They have to play the Rams in week 2, and Aaron Donald is back so I wish the team the best of luck. Hopefully, the defense can take advantage of the Rams offensive line and pull out a road victory in the City of Angels.