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In addition to those mistakes, I don’t doubt that coaches occasionally see available cutback lanes Helu failed to run through. However, he’s consistently helping to move the offense with his strength and speed.

WR NILES PAUL: Paul made two excellent special teams plays in his return from a sprained big toe. While covering a punt at the end of the second quarter, the rookie plowed through S Jim Leonhard and blew up PR Jeremy Kerley, who had bobbled the ball. Paul’s hit ensured a loose ball, which ILB Perry Riley recovered. Paul also had a key block against S Tracy Wilson to spring PR Brandon Banks’ 20-yard punt return into Jets‘ territory in the fourth quarter. Those types of plays will help Paul stick around for a long time.


QB REX GROSSMAN:Grossman moved the offense at times, but mostly he was inaccurate. He completed only 41.3 percent of his passes, his second-worst completion percentage since the 2006 regular-season finale. Sometimes he failed to set his feet — even when the pass rush was not a factor — and it resulted in wild throws.

“I thought Rex probably did not play as good as he has played over the last few games,” coach Mike Shanahan said Monday. “I think as he looks at the film, he’ll be somewhat disappointed in his play.”

Grossman lost a fumble and threw a late interception, and he could have had a few more interceptions. He tried to force a pass into the end zone on second-and-goal from the 5 at the end of the first half, and two Jets defenders got their hands on it. ILB David Harris nearly intercepted a second-half throw over the middle to WR Santana Moss. It was reminiscent of several interceptions earlier this season on which Grossman did not see a linebacker.

Grossman fumbled on third-and-10 in the fourth quarter when OLB Aaron Maybin sacked him 3.3 seconds after the snap. Perhaps he held the ball too long on the play, but the Jets‘ defense frequently succeeded in limiting open receivers available to him.

TE LOGAN PAULSEN: The Redskins must hope Paulsen got his worst game out of the way before being thrust into the No. 1 tight end role. He successfully opened some holes for RB Roy Helu early, but his breakdowns were costly as the game progressed.

His best block helped create space on the left edge for Helu’s 2-yard plunge into the end zone on the opening drive. DE Muhammad Wilkerson stood him up at first, but after LT Trent Williams helped with a combo block, Paulsen kept his legs churning and turned Wilkerson out of the play.

Things deteriorated, though, as the game went on. He whiffed on OLB Jamaal Westerman on the left edge on a rush that lost four yards on second-and-5 early in the third quarter. He surrendered a sack to Westerman on first down on the next series. It put the Redskins in second-and-16 en route to a three-and-out. “I need to be a little bit better with my technique,” Paulsen said after the game. “He made a nice little shoulder dip or whatever, but I’ve got to make that play for the team.”

OLB Calvin Pace pressured QB Rex Grossman into an incompletion on third-and-5 in the fourth quarter after beating Paulsen with an outside move. He’ll have to be much better during the final four games for the Redskins‘ offense to be effective.

LG MAURICE HURT: Hurt’s growing pains continue, and now he’ll have to play the final four games without Trent Williams to his left. Think defenses will try to test the left side of Washington’s line with some stunts and other games?

There are plays on which you see Hurt carrying out his assignment, but he’s a step or a split-second slow. For example, he didn’t disengage from the defensive tackle in time to get outside and block ILB Bart Scott on a fourth-quarter screen pass that lost four yards. DL Marcus Dixon stopped RB Roy Helu for only two yards on a fourth-quarter carry after Hurt’s attempted cut block was unsuccessful. Perhaps his timing will improve as he continues to build game experience.


• WR Jabar Gaffney did not have a catch for the first time this season (his previous low was two receptions). Part of that resulted from CB Darrelle Revis covering him. Still, he positively impacted the game with his run blocking. He engaged Revis near the sideline to help RB Roy Helu‘s 15-yard run on the game’s first play. He blocked S Jim Leonhard from the right slot just long enough for Helu to get through on his 22-yard run on the Redskins‘ second drive.

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