Why didn’t Zorn’s fourth-down call, of which he was so confident, gain the necessary 36 inches? Well, one reason might be that with right guard Randy Thomas out for the season - and his replacement, Chad Rinehart, making his NFL debut - the Lions had a pretty good idea the Redskins would try the other side, behind Chris Samuels and Derrick Dockery. (That, at least, was what Zorn did at the end of the St. Louis game, when the Rams dropped Portis for a 2-yard loss.)
“It makes a difference” not having Thomas in there, Campbell agreed. “Randy was a force in both the running game and in [pass protection]. Defenses are going to load up on one side. There are things we’re probably going to have to change until Chad settles in.”
The Redskins are going to have to change a lot more than that. Phillip Daniels called Sunday’s debacle “the most disappointing loss since I’ve been in Washington.” A tweak here and a tweak there won’t change the southerly course of this season.
“You don’t ever want to be in this position,” Campbell said. “But we’ve gotta find a way to get this thing turned around and turned around quick because it’s not going to get any easier.”
They can start by listening when Redskins Nation talks to them - even if it’s something they don’t want to hear.