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Oct. 8, 2004

Donít give up on the Redskins yet

by Michael Bushnell, Page Editor
I was going to do this column about Joe Gibbs and how maybe his new nicer demeanor wasnít working. But then it occurred to me, that weíre only four weeks into the season. Itís too early to jump to those conclusions.

Sure, the Redskins are 1-3, and granted, their offense has been pathetic. However, this is a very talented team that could be 4-0. Theyíve allowed no more than 21 points in any game, and have never lost by more than six points in any of their three losses.

The reason why they are 1-3 and not 4-0? Turnovers, and not the delicious ones you find at the bakery. Fumbles, interceptions, muffed special teams returns. Running back Clinton Portis has had four fumbles in the last three games, after not fumbling for nearly a calendar year! What is happening with regard to turnovers should not be happening.

As we all remember, but would like to forget, the Redskins committed seven turnovers, yet only lost by six points in Week Two at the Giants. Sure that makes the loss even more frustrating, to have all those shots at winning, and then to still come up short, but itís a perfect example of how these Redskins are able to win games, as long as they donít commit stupid penalties.

The defense has kept the Redskins alive in all of these games. Led by new coordinator Gregg Williams, they have stymied the four teams theyíve played, allowing few big runs and big plays. Losing LaVar Arrington for a couple weeks at least has proven not be a huge loss for the linebacking corps.

If the Redskins can settle down this turnover problem and stop dropping easy catches (that means you, Lavernaues), they can turn this year around. Sunday night they host Baltimore, a decent 2-2 team who will not light up the scoreboard. The Washington offense will have trouble with this stingy defense, but if they play smart football, there is no reason they canít win.

Four weeks is too early to write a team off. This is a typically optimistic Redskins homer column, but itís true: this team is very talented. Now itís all about not making stupid mistakes. This is something that Joe Gibbs can work with, and if he has to curse Portis, Coles and others out, I have no qualms that he will. That will turn this season right back around in the right direction.

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  • Aaron (View Email) on October 12, 2004
    Can you give up on them now?
  • Michael Bushnell (View Email) on October 12, 2004
    Pretty much, yeah.
  • Ben on October 14, 2004
    Come on man, you gotta stick to your guns. How are we supposed to respect your future columns if you take back what you write after just one game.
  • hello on October 14, 2004
    they're 1-4 now
  • Anonymous on October 14, 2004
    Yeah, big accomplishment staying within 6 points of every game. They've lost to the Giants, the Browns, and the Ravens. The Ravens are a decent team but the Giants, the Cowboys, and the Browns? You brag how they only lost by at most 6 to THEM?? We'll see how they do against the Eagles twice and the Packers. This is a team that could very well go 1-15.
  • Isamu Bae on October 15, 2004
    Just remember, the Tennessee Titans were 1-4 two years ago and they made it to the AFC Championship.
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