That was exciting, wasn’t it?
The Washington NFL team just won their second consecutive game to close out their home schedule, a 27-11 victory against an equally disappointing and battered Denver Broncos team.
Washington Redskins running back Kapri Bibbs (39) carries the ball during the first half an NFL football game against the Denver Broncos in Landover, Md., Sunday, Dec 24, 2017. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
It was truly a chore of a ballgame to watch. Imagine being in the stands, having paid to watch another boring and meaningless December game at FedEx Field. Both teams fielded rosters that would only look appealing in the preseason.
The Broncos entered the game leading the league in the fewest yards surrendered, but as the final score indicated, having a stout defense just isn’t enough in 2017. Kirk Cousins completed 19 of 27 attempts for 299 yards and three touchdown passes to Jamison Crowder, Josh Doctson and Vernon Davis, respectively, to stretch the Washington lead 27-3 late in the fourth quarter.
In a season full of injuries and ineptitude, Cousins became the first quarterback in Washington history with three seasons of 25 or more touchdown passes, and needs 65 yards for his third season in a row with 4,000-plus yards. Washington’s 386 total yards were the third-most allowed by the Denver defense this season. Only the Patriots and Eagles managed more yards against the Broncos. The “M*A*S*H* Unit” of an offensive line was also outstanding today, as the Broncos did not register a sack—the first time that has happened this season.
Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) turns out of the pocket during the second half an NFL football game against the Denver Broncos in Landover, Md., Sunday, Dec 24, 2017. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
The much-maligned D.C. defense played their second consecutive solid outing, going 58-plus minutes without giving up a touchdown, which would have been the first time this franchise had accomplished the feat since the 1970 AFL-NFL Merger. After being selected to his third Pro Bowl, star linebacker Ryan Kerrigan logged two more sacks on Broncos quarterback Brock Osweiler, which bumped up his team-leading total to 11 on the season. With those sacks, Kerrigan became the first Washington player with 10 or more sacks in consecutive seasons since Dexter Manley and Charles Mann in 1985 and 1986.
With the win still fresh, many Washington-area media pundits lauded this victory as something to build on for next season. It sounds good in theory, but isn’t that what Washington seems to do every season?
Reasonable fans can truly understand how the injury bug really decimated a team that was already lacking in premium talent. But the suggestion that this team is anything beyond mediocre simply because they were able to beat two other mediocre teams in the process does nothing for me, and it shouldn’t do anything for other ‘Skins fans, either.
Injuries are injuries: devastating. Effort and preparedness have nothing to do that, which will continue to be the issue heading into 2018 and beyond.