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He led Austin perfectly three plays later, allowing Austin to gain 20 yards after the catch.


QB John Beck‘s worst throw was the one he bounced to WR Santana Moss on third-and-4. From the left slot, Moss released inside the cornerback. It should have been an easy pitch and catch. Instead, Beck short-armed the throw as pressure came up the middle. That miss was what Beck harped on after the game.

He wasn’t fazed by the interception he threw on a long ball to WR Donté Stallworth down the left sideline. Offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan told him to take a shot before the Redskins‘ drive began, and Beck recognized one-on-one coverage between Stallworth and Baltimore CB Lardarius Webb. Stallworth and Beck agreed that in the future, Stallworth should take a pass interference penalty to break up the interception. The play began at the Redskins‘ 7-yard line, so a penalty would have cost them only a few yards.


In case you forgot, WR Santana Moss reminded us how well he can adjust to an off-target throw. Rex Grossman‘s throw to him in the back right corner of the end zone was too far inside, but Moss wheeled around and caught it, making it look easy. With two quarterbacks yet to prove they can consistently be accurate, Moss‘ ability to bail them out likely will come in handy this season.


RB Tim Hightower showed a burst of speed on his 37-yard touchdown run that I hadn’t seen before. Ravens SS Tom Zbikowski had the angle as Hightower cut back to the left sideline, but Hightower put it in a higher gear and won the race to the pylon.

After averaging a fumble per day for a week after he started practicing with the team, Hightower has secured the ball in all three preseason games. I suspect we’ll see offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan emphasize the run more once the regular season starts. Not only will it take pressure off the quarterback, but the ground attack has been a tremendous weapon through three preseason games. No need to make John Beck or Rex Grossman win games for you. Let Hightower carry the load.


The athleticism of the Redskins‘ first-string offensive line is a major reason why the running game has excelled. LT Trent Williams ran five yards to block ILB Ray Lewis out of the play on RB Tim Hightower’s 37-yard touchdown. On Hightower’s 10-yard run on Washington’s second series, C Will Montgomery pivoted and hooked Lewis to seal the hole.

Then again, Redskins linemen are inconsistent in one-on-one matchups. Ravens DE Cory Redding blew by RG Chris Chester on a stretch play and helped stop Hightower for a 4-yard loss. Lewis later withstood LG Kory Lichtensteiger’s cut-block attempt on a run he stopped for a 2-yard gain.

No line is ever going to perfect. The Redskins just have to be sure they’re winning more matchups than they’re losing. It’ll be interesting to finally see the unit play a full game and whether it’s able to outlast a defensive front that has to run sideline to sideline for four quarters.


I’ve got to add this about RB Tim Hightower’s 37-yard touchdown: LG Kory Lichtensteiger’s cut block took out DE Cory Redding AND NT Terrence Cody. The Steiger might be the Redskins‘ best cut-blocker. WR Terrence Austin got a piece of SS Tom Zbikowski, too. Another example of what the offense can accomplish when everyone executes their assignment.

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