Devastation: the Redskins snatched defeat from the clutches of victory in New Orleans. Christian Burt sings out the blues and goes Skin Deep and 3 & out on the 34-31 overtime loss…
Worst possible ending
We all love E.T right – masterful film, weepy, inspiring and ultimately uplifting. Imagine this then: that when our prune looking friend from outer space first “died” (under that terrifying medical chamber), E.T actually was indeed dead and the film ended there and then.
No flower perking up. No little red heartbeat. Instead just a very dead frozen looking extra-terrestrial and sad faces all around.
This is how I feel this morning; this is how bad of an ending the Redskins delivered in New Orleans. We have an Uncle Sam Sports group chat right; and of course, being the Washington fan I’m used to more losses than wins. Despite my declarations to said group that we could most likely balls this up; I actually did think at 31 -16, and not long to go, that a victory was in the bag.
But oh no: we cannot have nice things in D.C – in fact we could not even have that single yard from Samaje Perine that would’ve won the game with New Orleans burnt on time outs under the two minute warning. Maybe a QB sneak should have been the play on that one?
Too late now, and barring a miracle it’ll be season done and dusted with a loss in New York for Thursday Night Football.
The Saints were marching out
After rookie TE Jeremy Sprinkle had caught his first pass in the NFL in the best possible fashion: a touchdown, the Saints were racing out the Superdrome quicker than a Mercedes. The probability of a Washington victory at that point: 98%. It even rose to 99.6%!
And prior to this, the Skins had been stellar; Josh Doctson once again showed up with four first half catches – continuing the positive trend of Kirk Cousins putting it up there for Josh to compete for the ball.
Last week I highlighted that Perine was starting to flash and the rookie RB went for over 100 yards for the first time. All these wonderful upward curves for 54 minutes, marked out through a final six minutes of downward hell as a combination of Hall of Famer in waiting Drew Brees brilliance, missed catches, failed single yards, taking yourself out of field goal range and a game winning INT overturned (rightly in this case, although great effort from Kendall Fuller).
The NFL is brutal both to the body and the spirit; which leads me to the last part of the abject Sunday.
Another injury: season ender for Skins offensive MVP
You did want me to go on didn’t you? To continue this tale of woe and suffering, we now turn to what is likely the icing in the Season Is Done cake. If you’ve read the majority of my Redskins blogs over this season, you’ll be more than aware of the importance of running back Chris Thompson out the backfield.
Alas, #25 will be out for the season rather than terrorising the NFL after a devastating injury in the third quarter. DT Sheldon Rankins rolled up on Thompson’s right ankle and post-game it was confirmed as a season ending break. In Washington right now the breaks are of the bones and heart and not of the fortunate kind.
Game Ball and the road ahead
The Giants have pretty much been in disarray in 2017. So, of course, just before Washington visit the Big Apple, New York get an unexpected win in a low scoring game vs Kansas City Chiefs. On the plus side to this being a Thursday; it provides a fine opportunity to erase this gut wrenching loss.
Can Washington go again? The roster is an emergency ward of injuries, even those heading out to the field are banged up across the O-Line (Trent Williams remains the ultimate warrior). We’ve barely seen near-Elite TE Jordan Reed all season, fearsome DE Jonathan Allen is out for all of 2017 and the key magical play of Thompson has now also been extinguished.
On the flip side: the previously mentioned Doctson and Perine are starting to hot up and look NFL calibre. Thinking ahead to the 2018 Draft (and with this New Orleans loss, I confess that I am already looking ahead to next season), you ‘d think in addition building the DL, Washington may well even use a first for a running back of the highest standing. I’m guessing the 2018 Draft, however, will be dependent on the resigning of Cousins.
Cousins would’ve taken the Game Ball without a shadow of a doubt after slinging 300+yards and 3 TDs and once again showing that slow but visible progress in the hardest position in sports. You cannot, however, give a Game Ball to a losing QB, so for suiting up and providing protection as ever, despite a pretty much buggered knee, I’m going for Trent Williams.