Linebacker Marcus Washington talked on Wednesday about how the Redskins have stayed together through an up-and-down season. With a win on Sunday against Dallas, the Redskins would earn a playoff spot for the second time in three years. Washington spoke with Redskins.com on Wednesday:
Q: Does it surprise you how the team has performed in the stretch run this year?
A: "Not really. We're kind of upset from the first part of the season. You think back to some of the games that we didn't win, and some that we felt like we should have won. Now, we're fighting for our lives. But it makes it fun. It makes it fun to come to work, makes it fun to play knowing everything is on the line."
Q: Have you been able to reflect on everything the team has been through this season?
A: "A little bit. It's just amazing how much fight this team has, from the coaches on down to the players. The guys in the locker room--it seems like no matter what happens, everyone continues to press on. That says a lot about the character of this team."
Q: Is there any one thing that you can pinpoint as the reason for the Redskins' turnaround?
A: "I don't know if there's any one thing. There has been so much going on this last month for us. There have been some tough things. All I can say is, the guys pulled together and we kept pressing on. We kept fighting. We stayed together. Whether it was good times or bad times, we went through it all together."
Q: How do you think Randall Godfrey performed stepping in for Rocky McIntosh against the Minnesota Vikings?
A: "Randall is a physical guy and he has been playing a long time. He is a savvy vet. He just gets in and that experience comes out. He still loves the game and he has a good time out there with all the young guys."
Q: How has this team been able to overcome so many injuries this season?
A: "Every time we have had someone step into a starting role, they have been prepared and ready to go. It's a credit to the guys that we have and the coaches for preparing us every week."
Q: What do you think was the reason for the success in stopping Minnesota's ground game?
A: "I think it was gap responsibility. Nobody tried to do too much. No one tried to do someone else's job. Everyone did their own job. We tackled well. Most times on defense, when you tackle well you're going to have a pretty good game."
Q: Does it give you confidence that the team stayed close with Dallas and Green Bay, the two top teams in the NFC?
A: "We're very confident. We know we can pretty much play with anybody. We were in both of those games and we lost it right there at the end. Sitting in the driver's seat, and we have a chance to get to the big dance. We're in control of our own destiny."
Q: Will you scoreboard watch at all this Sunday?
A: "You kind of keep your eyes on it, but if we just go out there and handle our business, we'll be where we want to be."
Q: Is there any thought about Seattle, since that's who the Redskins would play if they make the playoffs?
A: "We have to cross this first bridge, then we can worry about that one. Only time will tell."
Q: Have you been surprised at how Todd Collins has led the team in the stretch run?
A: "You have to take your hat off to Todd. He has been playing great. He has been a special part of the team. We could not have asked for anything more out of him."