- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 29, 2009

Final observations from the Redskins’ 27-17 loss to the Eagles:

c On DeSean Jackson’s 67-yard end-around touchdown run less than two minutes into the game, Redskins defensive end Andre Carter had the job of containing on the play, but it’s not his first responsibility. In the Redskins’ scheme, Carter’s first “key” is the dive handoff to Brian Westbrook. Once Carter recognized it was a fake, he tried to get back into position, but Jackson was long gone. Even if his first key had been an end-around, Carter said: “It wouldn’t have mattered. He’s just fast.”

c Redskins punter Hunter Smith got plenty of work after missing two games. The average hang time on his seven punts was an unofficial 3.33 seconds. His longest punt - 57 yards - was returned 29 yards by Jackson. Smith simply outkicked his coverage. The punt had only 3.88 seconds of hang time, and when Jackson caught it, the two closest Redskins players were Justin Tryon (12 yards away) and H.B. Blades (24 yards). That allowed Jackson to make a couple moves before reversing direction to the wide side of the field.

c It’s anybody’s guess who actually dialed up the play, but Rock Cartwright’s 11-yard run, which helped set up the Redskins’ first touchdown, was a great call. The Eagles were expecting a pass and played both safeties behind the goal line. From the shotgun, Cartwright got the lead draw handoff. Lead blocker Ladell Betts crunched Akeem Jordan and Casey Rabach, and Will Montgomery sealed off Brodrick Bunkley.

c Before Jackson’s 57-yard touchdown catch on a third-and-22 play, the Eagles were 0-for-16 in situations of third-and-10 or longer. Cornerback Carlos Rogers jumped on Jackson’s fake slant, and Jackson quickly created separation from safety Chris Horton. Jackson had to wait for the pass at the 13-yard line but regained his momentum to score his second huge touchdown. The Redskins have allowed 15 third-down conversions when the opponent needed 6 or more yards.

c It took more than a month, but Portis got his wish in the third quarter when tight end Todd Yoder lined up at fullback. Portis reportedly asked coaches that Mike Sellers be benched last month and replaced by Yoder. That obviously hasn’t happened, but with Sellers taking extra snaps as the second tight end after Chris Cooley was injured, Yoder wound up in the backfield. Portis was limited to a 3-yard gain when Jordan shed Yoder’s block attempt.

- Ryan O’Halloran



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