Gameday Graphic for Game on 12/26/2010
JACKSONVILLE -- Introduce the offense? Introduce the defense? No, the question of the day was if the Redskins should be introduced to each other.
No problem there. They got to know each other quite well in the postgame celebration after their 20-17 overtime victory against the Jacksonville Jaguars. Hugs all around. Say hello to your new best friends.
Meet Sha'reff Rashad and Joe Joseph, Rob Jackson and Darrion Scott. Offer greetings to your new starting safeties, Kevin Barnes and Macho Harris.
Barnes ultimately provided the play of the game. Drafted a year ago as a cornerback, pressed into service as a safety, Barnes produced his first career interception in overtime to set up Graham Gano's winning field goal of 31 yards 2:47 into the extra session.
New faces, new times.
"I think it brought us closer together as a whole football team," Barnes said.
The Redskins, with their patched-together starting groups and in Rex Grossman's second start at quarterback, killed the Jaguars' playoff hopes on a cold and blustery afternoon at EverBank Field. Of course they first stoked those hopes, squandering a 10-0 lead before rebounding in overtime. This marked the Redskins' fourth OT game of the season and their third victory while working late.
"When you play a game like this and the (other) team's playing for a playoff spot and you're playing for pride, you get a chance to see what type of character you have on your football team," coach Mike Shanahan said. "You don't want to be in the position we're in but when you're in this position, you want to see how meaningful these type of games are when there's nothing to play for relative to a playoff spot."
Stripped down by injuries, with the roster turning over on almost a daily basis, the Redskins needed contributions not only from the remaining old heads but from the newbies as well.
The Jaguars (8-7) had beaten only one team this season that has a winning record and that didn't change. The Redskins (6-9) snapped a four-game losing streak and won for the first time in 2010 when they scored 20 points or more.
The help came from everywhere.
There was Jeremy Jarmon, rarely used this season, teaming with veteran Andre Carter for a sack at the end of the first half. Adam Carriker got a sack earlier. There was Barnes, blitzing David Garrard but just not finishing the play. There was an offensive line suddenly missing right tackle Jammal Brown (illness) keeping Grossman free of pressure and allowing no sacks in the first half. Punter Sam Paulescu boomed a couple of beauties before sailing a low line drive that provided aid and comfort to the enemy. Jackson, the linebacker filling in for the injured Bryan Orakpo, got a sack and a forced fumble.
The 10-7 halftime lead could have been greater but Grossman, throwing for Santana Moss from the Jaguars' 17-yard line, was intercepted by Derek Cox. Cox appeared first not to have either his second foot down inbounds or complete possession of the football but the Redskins challenge of this call yielded no fruit.
Grossman did not pick up where he left off against the Dallas Cowboys but he suffered more from Chris Cooley than the cold. The veteran tight end had at least three drops and possibly four in the first half alone. Grossman also had several passes tipped at the line in addition to the interception he threw.
The long-standing knock on Grossman ï¿½?? consistency ï¿½?? manifested itself throughout and leaped to larger-than-life status with nine minutes left in the third quarter. A nice little roll-out led to a nine-yard pass to Fred Davis and set up a second-and-one. Then Grossman, under some pressure, fired a ball into the ground just in front of him, drawing a 12-yarde penalty for intentional grounding. That's just a drive-killer, plain and simple.
Grossman finished with 182 yards on 19 of 39 passing, with a touchdown and an interception and a passer rating of 60.0. Half a dozen drops hurt.
Asked about Grossman after the game, Shanahan said: "The main thing is we won the football game."
Throw out the changed cast of characters and this one looked exactly like nearly every other played by the Redskins this season. The plot remained the same ï¿½?? one team takes a narrow lead, can't press the advantage, the opponent hangs around and threatens to take advantage.
Think back to the opener, when the Redskins staved off the Dallas Cowboys' comeback. The win over the Green Bay Packers. The win over the Tennessee Titans. All winnable or lose-able, a play here or there. This one unfolded similarly. Were the Jaguars, with everything to play for, actually going to play? Or were the Redskins, with so many new people hoping to impress the coaches and earn jobs next year, about to pull off this upset?
Their fortunes took a turn for the worse after London Fletcher sacked Jags quarterback David Garrard and stripped him of the ball. Garrard recovered and, one play later, on a third-and-15, hit Jason Hill for 37 yards. The Redskins failed to finish what they started and the Jaguars then tied the game at 10-10 on Josh Scobee's 34-yard field goal.
Then Grossman began to move the team. After seven failed third downs earlier, the Redskins converted two in a row, both on Grossman's passes to Moss as the third quarter ended. They'd convert another, on a one-yard run by Mike Sellers, and then a fourth down, on Ryan Torain's twisting one-yard dive into the end zone for a 17-10 lead.
Guts call, guts ball.
That drive covered 68 yards and 14 plays and used 7:50 off the clock, the Redskins' second-longest touchdown drive of the year in terms of time.
When Grossman could not get a play off in time and the Redskins took a delay of game penalty, comparisons with past efforts inevitably bubbled up. For good reason. The Redskins came up a yard short of a first down, Paulescu punted a low liner down the field and Mike Thomas returned that stubby 35-yard boot 21 yards to the Redskins 42.
It only took the Jaguars four plays to score, with Garrard running 20 yards on a keeper and with 2:44 left, the Redskins no longer held the lead, the momentum, the psychic edge.
In overtime, the Jaguars won the toss, took the ball and turned it over on the third play. A small convoy of pass rushers led by Chris Wilson lit into Garrard as he tried to throw and Barnes made the interception. The Redskins executed a couple of safe-enough running plays and then brought Gano out to snag the Jags.
The Redskins' final road trip of the 2010 season is to Jacksonville, Fla., where they take on the Jaguars at EverBank Field on Sunday, Dec. 26. Kickoff is 1 p.m. ET.
The stadium seats 67,164. It has a natural grass surface.
It's the Redskins' first regular season visit to Jacksonville since since 2002.
The Redskins are 1-2 against the AFC South this season. They have recorded losses to the Houston Texans (30-27 in overtime in Week 2) and Indianapolis Colts (27-24 in Week 6) and a win vs. Tennessee (19-16 in Week 11).
In road games, the Redskins are 3-4 this season. At home, the Jaguars are 5-2.
The game will be televised on FOX. Sam Rosen calls the play-by-play with color commentary by Tim Ryan. Nischelle Turner reports from the sidelines.
On radio, the game will be broadcast locally on ESPN 980 and the Redskins Radio Network. Larry Michael calls the play-by-play with former Redskins and Hall of Famers Sonny Jurgensen and Sam Huff adding color commentary. Former Redskin Rick 'Doc' Walker reports from the sidelines.
PROJECTED STARTING LINEUPS
|WR||89 Santana Moss||11 Mike Sims-Walker|
|LT||71 Trent Williams||75 Eugene Monroe|
|LG||78 Kory Lichtensteiger||67 Vince Manuwai|
|C||61 Casey Rabach||63 Brad Meester|
|RG||63 Will Montgomery||77 Uche Nwaneri|
|RT||69 Jammal Brown||78 Jordan Black|
|TE||47 Chris Cooley||89 Marcedes Lewis|
|WR||13 Anthony Armstrong||80 Mike Thomas|
|QB||8 Rex Grossman||9 David Garrard|
|FB||45 Mike Sellers||33 Greg Jones|
|RB||46 Ryan Torain||32 M. Jones-Drew|
|DE||94 Adam Carriker||94 Jeremy Mincey|
|NT||76 Anthony Bryant||93 Tyson Alualu|
|DE||64 Kedric Golston||96 Terrance Knighton|
|OLB/DE||97 Lorenzo Alexander||92 Austen Lane|
|ILB/LB||59 London Fletcher||52 Daryl Smith|
|ILB/LB||52 Rocky McIntosh||55 Kirk Morrison|
|OLB/LB||98 Brian Orakpo||56 Justin Durant|
|LCB||23 DeAngelo Hall||21 Derek Cox|
|RCB||22 Carlos Rogers||27 Rashean Mathis|
|SS||41 Kareem Moore||37 Sean Considine|
|FS||37 Reed Doughty||22 Don Carey|
|P||1 Sam Paulescu||3 Adam Podlesh|
|K||4 Graham Gano||10 Josh Scobee|
|H||1 Sam Paulescu||3 Adam Podlesh|
|LS||57 Nick Sundberg||48 Jeremy Cain|
|KOR||16 Brandon Banks||35 Deji Karim|
|PR||16 Brandon Banks||80 Mike Thomas|
The Redskins have played the Jaguars four times in the regular season and lead the series 3-1.
The most memorable game in the regular season series was the last matchup in 2006 at FedExField. In a hard-hitting, back-and-forth shootout, the Redskins defeated Jacksonville 36-30 in overtime.
Mark Brunell, the former Jaguars quarterback, threw a game-winning touchdown pass, a 69-yarder to Santana Moss who had to split two defenders on his way to the end zone.
It was Moss's third touchdown of the game. He finished that game with four catches for 138 yards. Clinton Portis also rushed for a season-high 112 yards on 27 carries.
Washington and Jacksonville have played three times in the preseason, with the Jaguars holding a 3-0 series lead.
Last year, the Jaguars defeated the Redskins 24-17 in Jacksonville in the 2009 preseason finale for both clubs.
TALE OF THE TAPE
|REDSKINS 2010 RANKINGS|
|JAGUARS 2010 RANKINGS|
FAMILIAR FACES ON THE JAGUARS
Running backs coach Earnest Byner played for the Redskins from 1989-93 and totaled 3,950 rushing yards in five seasons with the team. In 2004, Byner was named Redskins running backs coach, a role he served through 2007. He coached Clinton Portis to three 1,000-yard rushing seasons and Ladell Betts to one 1,000-yard rushing season.
Offensive line coach Andy Heck played for the Redskins from 1999-2000. He was part of a 1999 offense that was ranked No. 2 in the NFL. He is also a graduate of Woodson High School in Fairfax. Va.
Practice squad linebacker Alvin Bowen spent the 2009 season on the Redskins' practice squad.
Long snapper Jeremy Cain spent the 2008 offseason with the Redskins, but he was released before training camp.
REDSKINS-JAGUARS NEWS & NOTES
-- Fletcher's An Iron Man
London Fletcher has continued to be a model of consistency in his 13th NFL season.
He has not missed a game since entering the league as an undrafted free agent with the St. Louis Rams in 1998.
With Brett Favre's consecutive games played streak having been snapped last Monday night, Fletcher is now tied with Tampa Bay's Ronde Barber and Indianapolis's Peyton Manning for the longest active streak with 206 consecutive games played.
Fletcher is third among active players with 165 consecutive starts. Manning is first with 206 consecutive starts and Barber is second at 181.
Since joining the Redskins in 2007, Fletcher has led the team in tackles in each of his three seasons with the club.
His 146 tackles this season is the 12th straight in which he has recorded at least 100 tackles. The streak dates back to 1999, when he was in his second season with the Rams. It is the longest current streak in the NFL.
-- First-Year Redskins Head Coaches
Entering Sunday's game vs. Tennessee, Mike Shanahan is 5-9 in his first season as Redskins head coach.
Looking back at Redskins head coaches in their first season, five have gone on to have winning seasons (excluding Dick Todd, who was 5-4 in taking over three games into the 1951 season.)
Twelve first-year head coaches suffered losing campaigns, including Joe Gibbs's return in 2004. Additionally Herman Ball coached the final seven games in 1949 and finished 1-4, while Terry Robiskie finished 1-2 while coaching the last three games of 2000.
Eight first-year head coaches ended their seasons with a .500 record, including Jim Zorn in 2008.
-- How the Redskins' Roster Was Built
The Redskins have 15 players on the roster that the team drafted, including 2010 first-round pick Trent Williams and 2009 supplemental draft pick Jeremy Jarmon.
Mike Sellers is the longest-tenured Redskins. He had a stint with the Redskins in 1998-2000 and rejoined the team in 2004.
Washington has used unrestricted free agency to acquire 28 players, including Casey Rabach in 2005, Andre Carter in 2006, London Fletcher in 2007, DeAngelo Hall in 2008, Albert Haynesworth in 2009 and Ma'ake Kemoeatu in 2010.
Five Redskins players were acquired as undrafted rookie free agents. This group includes offensive linemen Stephon Heyer and cornerback Byron Westbrook, both local products.
The team has five players on the roster acquired via trade: Santana Moss, Donovan McNabb, Adam Carriker, Jammal Brown and John Beck.
-- Shanahan's Moving Up
With the Redskins' Week 10 win over the Tennessee Titans, Mike Shanahan recorded his 159th career win (regular season and postseason) as a head coach.
Shanahan's career record is 159-112, a .587 winning percentage. That win total is 16th best among all-time NFL head coaches.
He needs three wins to surpass Bill Cowher, who has a 161-99-1 career record.
Among active head coaches, Shanahan's 159-112 record is second only to New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick, who has a 175-99 record.
-- Going Overtime
The Redskins have played three overtime contests this season and they have a record of 2-1.
If the Redskins play a fourth overtime game this season, it would be a franchise first.
In Week 2, the Redskins lost to the Houston Texans 30-27 in overtime at FedExField. Three weeks later, they defeated the Green Bay Packers 16-13 in overtime at FedExField.
In Week 11 at Tennessee, the Redskins defeated the Titans 19-16 in overtime at LP Field in Nashville.
-- Cooley Coming On
Chris Cooley could emerge as the greatest Redskins tight end in franchise history this year.
In his 7-year career, Cooley has 410 receptions for 4,537 yards and 31 touchdowns.
He needs five catches to move past Ricky Sanders for sixth place in all-time receptions in franchise history.
Among tight ends, he is ranked second in all-time receptions in franchise history behind Jerry Smith, whose 13-year career is twice that of Cooley. Smith finished his career with 421 career receptions.
Cooley already holds the Redskins record for most receptions by a tight end in a single season with 83 in 2008.
-- Marylanders in Jacksonville
The Jaguars have several connections to the University of Maryland.
Linebackers coach Mark Duffner was the head coach of the Terrapins from 1992-96.
Punter Adam Podlesh is a former Terrapins currently on the Jaguars' roster.
And practice squad defensive tackle Dre Moore is also a former Terrapin.
-- What's Next?
The Redskins close out the 2010 regular season with a home against the New York Giants at FedExField. Kickoff is 1 p.m. ET.
The Redskins have lost five consecutive games to the Giants, including 31-7 in Week 12 at New Meadowlands Stadium.