Cleat Geeks

REDskin Zone: Down go the Browns

One thing that is for sure in the NFL is nothing is ever for sure. Even the league’s weakest teams still provide much more of a challenge than a lower division opponent might provide a college or high school schedule.

You show up ready to play or anyone can beat you.

That lends some encouragement to a 31-20 Week 4 victory against the Cleveland Browns for the Redskins, squaring their record at 2-2 and getting them at least somewhat back within sight of the division-leading Philadelphia Eagles, who were off and remained 3-0.

“Well, we accomplished our goal and that was to win the game, that’s number one. So we’re happy about that,” Coach Jay Gruden said Monday. “That’s the only thing we’re looking to do is win the game. Now, when you assess the film, there’s some things we have to clean up. Our tackling was poor. We were poor on third down on defense, and not good enough in the red zone on defense.jaygrudenpressconference

“Offensively, obviously the turnover hurt us but we did some good things on offense. The sack wasn’t very good, but there’s some things to clean up. But, the ultimate goal is to win the game and I’m happy we did that.”

The day provided the best running attack so far this season for Washington. Matt Jones rushed for 117 yards and a score in solidly the team’s best rushing day in nearly a calendar year.matt-jones-redskins

“We’re going to be diverse in what we do,” Gruden said. “Having a run game, a good, strong running game, Matt Jones ran the ball extremely well and the line blocked for him good.”

The Redskins also showed some resiliency. After Jordan Reed had staked his team to a 14-0 lead on a pair of first-quarter touchdown receptions from Kirk Cousins, Cleveland battled all the way back to snare a 20-17 lead in the third quarter.

But as they’d started with the game’s first two touchdowns, the Redskins ended it in the same manner, on a 5-yard pass from Cousins to Chris Thompson and a one-yard plunge by Jones.


Injury Shuffle

With several regulars out with injuries and several more going down during the game, the Redskins got solid play out of some new faces, or guys who aren’t new but were filling more expanded roles.

Su’a Cravens and David Bruton each went down during the game and started the week in concussion protocol, while linebacker Ryan Kerrigan suffered an elbow injury and did not return. Bashaud Breeland, Kory Lichtensteiger and Shaun Lauvao had already missed the contest due to past injuries.

Rookie receiver Josh Doctson also missed the game as he continues to try to recover from a preseason injury that never has quite healed up right.

All are listed as questionable or doubtful for next weekend as of midweek.


Week 5 – at Baltimore, 1 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 9

redskinsvsravensThe Redskins stay against AFC North competition as they make the short trip to Baltimore for a Sunday afternoon tilt with the surprising Ravens, who started the season with three straight wins before a close loss to the Raiders last week.

Baltimore won those three games by a combined total of just 13 points, spurred on by a stronger than expected defense that harkens back to the glory days of Ray Lewis and Ed Reed. The Ravens then held the Raiders to just 261 yards but struggled to get the ball in the end zone in last week’s 28-27 defeat.

The ageless Steve Smith has been the top target for Joe Flacco, who has thrown four touchdowns and four interceptions so far on an offense that has struggled at times.

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