Preseason Week 1 Observations Redskins vs. Falcons
The Washington Redskins kicked off their 2016 preseason slate on Thursday when they traveled to Atlanta and lost to the Falcons 23-17. The first-team offense came out looking crisp in the passing game, but flat moving the ball on the ground. It’s important to point out that this was just the first preseason game of the year and no major conclusions should be drawn from the team following this contest. The main thing about preseason is to make it through the four-game schedule without any major injuries. Below is a collection of observations from the night.
Starting QB’s: Kirk Cousins 5-5, 39 yards – Matt Ryan 0-4
Morgan Moses seemed to have some issues blocking Vic Beasley. On several occasions, Beasley either had the edge and was held by Moses, or Beasley simply over-shot the hole after blowing by Moses. Beasley is fast, so some of this was expected.
The Redskins run game was nonexistent and needs a major shot in the arm. Matt Jones showed very little aggression while on the field. His best run was on a 12-yard play that was called back for holding by Moses. On another play, Sean Weatherspoon lifted him up and threw him back down to the ground hard on his back. Rookie Keith Marshall was unimpressive as well. Robert Kelley picked up the slack for the unit in later quarters.
On the one possession for the full first team defense, the Redskins held the Falcons to a three and out from the one-yard line.
Vernon Davis dropped a sure TD from Colt McCoy. Other than the drop, Davis looked good the rest of the evening on his blocking assignments after getting the start for Jordan Reed, who missed the game with a sprained thumb.
Former Redskins receiver Aldrick Robinson broke free in the secondary on two occasions (42 yards and 48 yards) racking up big gains against Redskins backups Quinton Dunbar and Will Blackmon. Dunbar appeared lost on the second play.
WAY too many penalties. Coach Jay Gruden can’t be very happy with the undisciplined play/manner the team carried itself in terms of penalties.
Preston Smith is getting better every time he’s on the field. His inside moves continue to be his best…but he has improved overall and looks to make Redskins fans forget the name Junior Galette.
Su’A Cravens is certainly a high-energy player. Cravens made several plays on the night as it seems he could constantly be seen flying all over the field. He still made some mistakes, but over time I could see him being effective at the nickel/dime LB spot and as a safety lined up in the box (near the line) in coverage.
Trent Murphy looked solid playing both LB and defensive end while racking up the most snaps of any Redskins player on the night. Murphy put on an additional 25 pounds this offseason in an attempt to move to the defensive end spot.
Martrell Spaight continues to show a huge amount of fire and skills in his comeback from missing 2015 with a concussion injury. Spaight led all Redskins defenders in tackles.
Falcons return-man JD McKissic’s 101-yard Kick return for a touchdown proved to be the difference in the game.
Redskins Rookie QB Nate Sudfeld was 10-15 for 89 yards and a touchdown on the night.
To watch the highlights from this game CLICK HERE.