*Pre-editor post (forgive any typos)
This was an unusual game through and through. Washington jumped out to a 17-0 lead and was in total control. A quick, efficient drive right off the bat for the Redskins. D.J. Moore started fumbling away drives for Carolina (two lost fumbles in the first half). Washington was rolling/being handed the game.
After being down 17 right away, Carolina then won the rest of the game 17-6. It’s like Carolina was better all game but dug themselves a hole they thought they’d climb out of…but time ran out. 23-17 Washington wins.
Actually, time didn’t run out…Cam Newton blew it.
Down 23-17, the Panthers embarked on a final drive with 3:11 left. Down the field they went – getting to the Redskins 16-yard line with 0:47 left and two timeouts and a 2nd & 5. The come-from-behind win was nearing completion…and then Cam Newton looked like he ‘threw’ the game. Instead of taking the easy route to chip away closer with fresh downs…Newton played, maybe, the single stupidest stretch of quarterbacking you’ll find this year.
On 2nd & 5 from the Redskins 16-yard line, he tried to hit Christian McCaffrey on a long wheel route into the end zone…and overthrew him. A tough pass that didn’t need to happen. On 3rd & 5, you thought for sure they’d try and get the first, a fresh set of downs closer with timeouts left. Nope. Cam takes a jump ball-ish shot at a not open Devin Funchess…and overthrows it. Now, 4th & 5…Cam tries to finally get a short completion 1st-down, but overthrows that. Ball game.
Carolina is now 3-2, and if they lose AT Philly Week 7…they fall to 3-3. They would then project to 5-5 by Week 11, and in a precarious position to get to 9-10 wins. We see 9-7 if they lose to Philly. 10-6 if they beat them, and then in a very good playoff tiebreaker spot with wins over Philly and Dallas.
Washington rises to 3-2. Huge game Week 7 hosting Dallas. Win Week 7 and go to 4-2 and have a real shot to win the NFC East. Washington could win four or five of their next 5. We are projecting 8 wins total, but a chance for win #9 and an NFC East title with a win over Philly in Week 17, a game at Washington. Beating Dallas this week would be huge…to get them on a playoff track, and a loss leaves them little room for error ahead.
Fantasy Player Notes…
Not a lot to report or reveal from this game, for fantasy purposes.
-- D.J. Moore (4-59-0/5) fumbled twice in the 1st-half, somewhat cost the Panthers the game, in a sense. Moore never comes out of the game and everyone rallies to his side and Ron Rivera boasts confidence in DJM at the halftime interview.
That’s all good, but I point this out because Curtis Samuel was the best WR on the team in the preseason. He was fantastic. Moore was a ghost…a lost rookie. Samuel got the heartbeat issue right before opening day, missed a few games, came back last week with an amazing catch and run TD on his first touch. Moore fumbling twice this game, Samuel doing everything ‘right’ since the summer…but Moore stays in the game despite his miscues, and Samuel can’t even get a target in this game despite doing everything ‘right’ since the preseason.
THAT is the NFL in a nutshell more times than not.
The NFL should cancel the preseason…it literally means nothing. Great players show out in the preseason, are cut, and no one claims them because the NFL isn’t looking/scouting mostly and doesn’t know what to look for anyway.
I say all this to note…we can have all the FF-hope in Samuel we want because we’re impressed by his 2018 work…and not impressed with ‘sleepy’ D.J. Moore – but the NFL sees things none of the rest of us sees all the time. Here’s another one. Your Samuel dynasty lottery tickets are long shots, awaiting Moore to fall off a tall building…it’s the only way Samuel could get past him.
-- My opinion, for what it is worth, from my eyeballs of watching a lot of tape everyday…
Greg Olsen (4-48-0/7) looks like he’s lost 20%+ of his speed/athleticism/bounce with all these mounting injuries the past two seasons. He looks lumbering more than graceful.
1 TD in his last 17 regular season game appearances. 5 TDs in his last 31 regular season games.
One game over 60 yards in his last 11 regular season games.
5 or more catches in a game once in his last 10 games.
Congrats to Olsen for conning the Panthers for another contract this offseason…$12M guaranteed to ‘come back’.
-- Nothing wrong with Christian McCaffrey (8-20-0, 7-46-0/8)…the Panthers got down 17-0 and started abandoning any type of running game.
So far, aside from one big game…CMC has been LOL running he ball. Take away Week 3 and in his other 4 games he’s averaged 10.8 carries for 41.3 yards rushing and 0.0 TDs per game. He’s not a legit work horse…he’s a glorified passing game back being shoved extra carries from time-to-time. He’s falling towards high-end RB2 more than sure fire RB1.
He’s trade-able if you think you can really turn him hot. He’s not dying but he just is what he is. You hope for a spike week every week. He faces three top 6 run defenses the next three weeks. You have to hope he has one of those 6-7-8-9 catch games each week ahead.
-- I have no notes on any Redskins player. Everybody did what they do…Alex Smith was efficient. Adrian Peterson took all the carries. No WR for the Redskins is worth mentioning.
Jordan Reed had a team high 9 targets…and caught 5 passes for 36 yards and no TDs.
Alex Smith is a fantasy plague for all receivers.
-- The Redskins-DST has held four of five opponents to 21 or fewer this season. Washington’s defense is #8 in PPG allowed in the NFL, including getting bombed by the Saints in that MNF game. Washington has a good defense.
On the flip side…4th lowest in sacks, 7th lowest in INTs.
Their schedule ahead is OK, mostly FF-usable right through Week 16.
They’re a C+/B- DST for fantasy with a ‘B-’ grade schedule. It’s good…OK…not ‘wow’.
Snap Counts of Interest…
47 = Reed
36 = V. Davis
21 = Sprinkle
37 = Peterson
26 = Bibbs
08 = Perine
58 = Funchess
42 = Torrey Sm
37 = Jarius Wright
27 = DJ Moore
03 = Curtis Samuel