- The Washington Times - Saturday, September 5, 2009

FIVE THINGS WE LEARNED

1. The starting offensive line had better stay healthy. The starting line didn’t allow Jason Campbell to be sacked through 41 preseason pass attempts. The backups surrendered 10 sacks through 87 attempts by Todd Collins, Colt Brennan and Chase Daniel. Opposing pass rushers flew by tackles Mike Williams and Jeremy Bridges as if they had E-ZPass.

2. Malcolm Kelly should start opposite Santana Moss at receiver. When Antwaan Randle El couldn’t hold onto the bomb from Campbell in traffic against the Jaguars, he ensured that coach Jim Zorn will live up to the plan of making either the 6-foot-4 Kelly or fellow second-year man Devin Thomas a starter and demoting the 5-10 veteran to slot receiver. Kelly’s hands and size won the battle.

3. Chase Daniel is worth keeping on the practice squad. Brennan played well enough in the past two games to hold onto the No. 3 quarterback spot he owned last season. But Daniel, after a tough beginning against the Jaguars, threw his third touchdown pass in two games. The rookie free agent is charitably listed at 6 feet, but he has a strong arm. With Campbell’s contract expiring and Collins turning 38 in November, the former Missouri star should stick around and learn.

4. The cult of Marcus Mason should be over. The former Georgetown Prep standout averaged 4.8 yards a carry and was the NFL’s top preseason rusher last year - but still was cut. Mason averaged just 3.1 a carry this summer and doesn’t provide the burst of fellow young backs Dominique Dorsey and Anthony Alridge.

5. It’s clear which defensive backs aren’t making the team. Cornerbacks Byron Westbrook and Doug Dutch and safety Lendy Holmes were all long shots before Thursday night. Each made it even more clear with mistakes in pass coverage that he’ll be one of Saturday’s 22 cuts.

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