In-season, I’m pumping out content faster than editing can keep up with. I don’t want to hold the recaps for hours waiting on perfection. We will correct errors after the fact, but for now – forgive any of my gaffes. I dictate some of my notes, and the computer software or Siri interpretation can be comical. I try to correct them all before publishing it, but I miss it sometimes…in the 50,000+ words I pen each week during the season (not including all the emails). I’m moving fast, and want to get the product out there ASAP at 98% ‘good’…vs. big delays trying to get to 99.9% craftsmanship. So here you go…
The Eagles led this game 3-0 after their first series and then drove right down to the 5-yard line ready to extend the lead to 10-0 on their second series. On 2nd & goal, Carson Wentz hit Jordan Matthews for a nice TD, but it was ruled just out of bounds. On the next throw, Wentz tossed an interception…a blown golden opportunity. For about a half+ the Eagles had their way with the Redskins…13-7 lead at the half that really could have been 20-7. Philly opened the 3rd quarter holding the Redskins, forcing a punt…and Darren Sproles returned it for a TD, but it got called back for a penalty. Washington survived a few death blows in the first 2.5 quarters. Kirk Cousins then hit DeSean Jackson for an 80-yard TD in the 3rd quarter, a deep-ball circus catch. The next thing you know the Redskins are up 21-13 and riding high in the 4th quarter.
Just when life looked ‘right’ again, Washington handling Philly as expected, Cousins served up a pick-six and now the Eagles were back in business. Philly got up 22-21 with 5 minutes left, but Washington scored with under two minutes left to take a 27-22 lead/eventual win.
Washington likely wins their next two games to jump to 9-5-1, and then no matter what they do vs. the Giants Week 17…the Redskins would be in nice wild card shape. If the Redskins gaffe one in the next two weeks…they are probably going to slide out of the playoffs. Washington is good enough to win out…and erratic enough to go 1-2 the rest of the way and miss out on the playoffs.
The Eagles will very likely lose their last three games, making it seven losses in a row to end the season. Nine losses over their final 10 games. After Week 4…the Eagles were seen as a playoff team. Remember the good ole days?
— OK, Jordan Reed (1-10-0/1 target)…
Be afraid. Be very afraid. He’s not right.
Reed played all of 10 snaps in this game. He came in on 3rd downs and known passing situations in the first half. He was a ghost in the second half. He popped up 1-2 times in the 4th quarter. He was mostly a decoy.
Two telling things…
1: Reed had his one catch in the second quarter. A little out route to the sidelines. He caught the pass and was hit by two defenders. Reed looked preoccupied with not landing on his shoulder so he flipped around so he landed on his back…which looked more painful/awkward. He got up OK, but came out of the game and went to the sidelines back in the treatment area and was not seen again for almost two quarters.
Reed was favoring his shoulder, and that’s a tough way to try to play. He can’t stiff arm. He looks like he’s avoiding contact off the snap. He has to worry about fumbling because of the grip depending upon what hand he has the ball in. Reed was a total non-factor.
Just based on point #1, I don’t know how you can play him with any confidence in Week 15. Sorry. Based on what I saw…you can’t do it.
2: Washington was down 22-21 with 5 minutes left with Philly kicking off to them. Washington embarked on an 8-play drive to take the lead/win the game. The MOST critical 5 minutes of the season because if Washington doesn’t score – a devastating loss to a bad Philly team and their playoff chances go on life support. Eight plays, six passes…Jordan Reed was never on the field. But wait…
After that TD, the Redskins ‘went for two’…and Reed came onto the field. They went to him, but he couldn’t get turned around to make the catch. Point taken – in a critical time/drive Reed was not on the field, but was OK enough to come in for the 2pt conversion. That’s managing reps. That’s a lack of confidence. That’s disconcerting if you own Reed and want to play him Week 15.
Reed has said that he’s in a lot of pain, but wants to play through it for the team.
— Vernon Davis (1-1-0/2 targets) had all of two targets in his starting role/38 snaps. He almost scored a TD on his one a target, but you can see that Davis was not a key part of the offense playing in Reed’s role.
— Carson Wentz (32-46 for 314 yards, 1 TD/1 INT) is like a bad Blake Bortles right now. His team is always down. Wentz is throwing way too much…with way too little results.
Pass attempts in games the past 7 games: 43-47-36-45-36-60-36 (43.3 per game)
TD passes in the past 7 games: 1-0-0-2-0-1-1 (0.9 per game)
Passing yards in the past 7 games: 202-364-231-218-254-308-314 (270.1 per game)
You can’t throw that much and just have 0.9 TD passes per game. That’s a bad sign. Any QB can complete garbage time passes between the 20s. Wentz is failing to convert scores against the easiest of defenses as they lose most all their games now.
6 TD/11 INT in his last 9 games. Something continues to be ‘not right’ here.
— You will get your catches with Jordan Matthews (8-79-0/10 targets). Low probability of a TD, but you’ll get catches and yards because Wentz is throwing so much.
Note – Any of you who have asked me about who to start or not this week, and I’ve shied away from Jordan Matthews on you — I am pushing Matthews back up the board more seriously in PPR. You won’t get TDs or 100+ yard games, but you will get 5-6+ catches for 60+ yards…and hopefully a TD.
Consider in Week 12, Matthews started out nice vs. Green Bay, but then got hurt and missed the final 2+ quarters. I’m going to take that game, and double JMatt’s 4 catches for 47 yards output (8 rec. for 94 yards) to represent the pace he was on (and that’s being conservative). With that caveat, here are Matthews numbers his last six games…
8.5 FF PPG (15.6 PPR) on 7.3 catches (10.5 targets) for 75.0 yards and 0.16 TDs per game.
He’s getting a ton of catches and decent yards and no TDs, but I swear he’s probably had 5+ TD opportunities he just missed on. He caught a TD in this game, but just stepped out of bounds back of the end zone.
I’m back in on Jordan Matthews as the new Keenan Allen.
Tune in next week when I tell Wentz is never going to let this happen.
Right now, get re-excited in PPR for JMatt.
— Kirk Cousins (14-21 for 234 yards, 2 TD/1 INT) had a weaker than usual (of late) fantasy game. Note he had just 21 throws in this game. Why? In part, because Philly dominated the time of possession – 37-23 minutes in favor of Philly.
— OK, I’m tapping out on the Redskins DST as a sleeper play angle I’ve supported for the past 4-5 weeks. The schedule ahead is OK, but they just lost captain/ILB Will Compton and they allowed back-to-back 31 point games prior to this game…and the Eagles really should have had 30+ points too. Seek harbor elsewhere for a DST. I’m done defending the Redskins.