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Redskins In a Bounce-Back Mode

In the Redskins Park locker room on Monday, a sign was posted that read "5 In a Row Or We Don't Go."

And so, the Redskins know exactly what they need to do to make the playoffs for the first time since 1999.

It starts with the first game, this Sunday against the St. Louis Rams at the Edward Jones Dome. The Redskins have lost four consecutive road games since the Week 2, come-from-behind, 14-13 win at Dallas.

"The goal now is to focus on St. Louis and move on," cornerback Shawn Springs said. "For me, [the change in focus] started as soon as I got into that film room and watched [Rams wide receiver] Torry Holt running all over the field. That'll get you ready real fast."

Added wide receiver Taylor Jacobs: "I'm sure every player in this locker room has been through adversity before. We just have to keep plugging away. We're going to come in and learn what we need to do better. We have a great coaching staff. We just have to go out there and fight."

Head coach Joe Gibbs made it clear in his comments on Sunday and Monday that he will be monitoring players closely to see who is battling through the adversity and still fighting for a postseason berth.

"I think for all of us, when you get tested in life, you see what you are made of," Gibbs said. "You get measured during adversity. We've got to see if we can bounce back and try to get a win under our belt. We've got to see if we can get this turned around.

With five games remaining, the Redskins will likely need some help to make the postseason. But a playoff berth is not outside of the realm of possibility.

Four of the Redskins' six losses this season have been to AFC opponents, and those games are arguably the least important on the schedule.

It's NFC games that are more important, and NFC East games in particular, when it comes to tiebreakers. And the Redskins are 5-2 in the NFC and 2-1 in the NFC East.

After key road trips to St. Louis and Arizona in the next two weeks, the Redskins return home to play NFC East foes Dallas and the New York Giants. The Redskins are two games back of the Cowboys and Giants, who play at the Meadowlands this Sunday.

If the Redskins can win in St. Louis and Arizona, to get to 7-6, the final three NFC East games should be meaningful.

"I think we have a ton to play for here," Gibbs said. "Each one of the games is precious to us. We need to get back on the winning track. That's first of all. I think everybody can see the numbers: We have five wins and we have five games left. Everybody can do the numbers on that.

"Their focus is trying to win a football game. We need to try and win a football game. We are going to be on the road for two tough weeks. I think that is our focus, what can we do to try and beat the Rams. As far as down the road, what it means is that we have a lot to play for."

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