Redskins Can Still Make Playoffs
Charles E. Sutton | 11/19/2012, 12:52 p.m.
Nov. 14, 2012
Believe it or not, the Washington Redskins can still make the playoffs. But they will need to make their move within the next 16 days.
Going 2-1 over the next three games won't get it done. The Redskins must win all three. A win against Philadelphia on Sunday followed by beating Dallas on Thanksgiving Day and the New York Giants on December 3 would improve Washington to 6-6 overall and 3-1 in the NFC East.
The Redskins chances are better now than they were earlier in the season. Philadelphia (3-6) has lost five consecutive games and will probably be without the services of Michael Vick on Sunday at FedEx Field. Dallas (4-5) is the only division opponent to win its last game. The Giants (6-4) have dropped its last two.
But the Redskins will have to make some adjustments following their bye week. Although it may have been more dangerous, quarterback Robert Griffin III will have to return to being RGIII. The offense has gone cold since limiting Griffin's option runs soon after his concussion against Atlanta on October 7. An offense that was once difficult to stop has only scored 25 point in its last two contests.
The Redskins need to get out of Griffin's way and let Griffin be Griffin. Give him the opportunity to create. Let's just trust him to get down when he needs to.
Running back Alfred Morris must get the ball more consistently. Periodically, he seems to disappear. This typically occurs when offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan chooses to call passing plays in bunches. Unless Washington is trailing by a large margin in the second half of games, Morris can carry the offense.
If wide receiver Pierre Garcon can't play this week, he should be placed on injured reserve. Losing a high-caliber talent like Garcon would be bad luck, but the team must get more productivity from its receiving corps. If Garcon can't play, promote Santana Moss to the starting position. Moss is clearly the best playmaker, though Joshua Morgan has been improving.
Cornerback DeAngelo Hall must be assigned to the opposition's best receiver. His Pro Bowl skills may have diminished, but he's still a better player than Josh Wilson. And, most of all, you're still in the playoff picture, so act like it. If the Redskins can win their next three games, they've got a shot at making the postseason.