WASHINGTON — The Redskins had a golden opportunity on Monday night to take a hold of the NFC East — with everyone else losing on Sunday — and improve to 3-1 for the first time since 2011.
Instead, they came out flat. They were outplayed and out-coached on national television, losing to the Saints 43-19. All of this while watching Drew Brees pass Peyton Manning to become the NFL all-time passing leader. He broke the record on a touchdown pass in the first half and finished with 363 yards.
To sum up the performance in New Orleans, Jay Gruden said it best.
“A total team debauchery and I’m the one in charge of it and I take responsibility for it.”
We’ve seen a different Redskins team every week this season. This game, however, was by far the worst of the four weeks. It’s even more alarming because it came after a bye week with 15 days to prepare to face off against a team that handed the Redskins their most crushing defeat a year ago.
The Redskins defense was ranked No. 1 coming into Monday, giving up 14.7 points per game through the first three games. They proceeded to get blown out.
They looked lost in coverage, committed too many stupid penalties, including personal fouls on defense that extended drives for the Saints.
They couldn’t run the ball on offense — just 39 yards on 18 carries all night. Adrian Peterson had just six yards on four carries before leaving with a shoulder injury. Alex Smith had his worst game as a Redskin, missing open guys all night, including two potential touchdowns, while looking flustered.
Jordan Reed wasn’t targeted until midway through the third quarter and finished with one reception. That just can’t happen if this team is going to do anything this season.
The Redskins have now lost six straight Monday night games and are 2-14 in their last 16, dating back to 2008.
With all that being said, the Redskins still lead the NFC East at 2-2 and have the 3-1 Carolina Panthers coming to town on Sunday.
There is plenty of time left in this season, but the Redskins need to figure out quickly who exactly they are and what kind of team they want to be.
There were a few big injuries suffered in this game:
- Adrian Peterson suffered a shoulder strain and will have an MRI.
- Vernon Davis has a hamstring injury.
- Chris Thompson has a rib injury he suffered on the two point conversion attempt in the fourth quarter.
- Paul Richardson ended his night with ice wrapped around his knee.