One hurts the other's hurt
This is ridiculous. The Washington Redskins are 5-3 at the midpoint and playing very close games and do not have a receiver with a touchdown catch. Think about that one for a mo. The Redskins have scored a total of 152 points, 19.0 per game which is good for 22nd ranking, right below the Raiders and right above da Bears. In that number are six passing TDs, five to Chris Cooley aka the Horndog and one to Mike Sellers. If I were a defensive coordinator I would swarm the Horndog once the Redskins get to the red zone.
The Redskins offense simply does not need many quality receivers. Recall in 2005, before Al Saunders darkened the door at Ashburn that it was Santana Moss and Mark Brunell all the way to the second round of the playoffs, Santana set a team record with 1483 receiving yards, the Horndog had only 13 fewer catches than Santana but half the yardage of Santana.
Then last season as Mark Brunell shrunk into a former starter and Jason Campbell became Jason Campbell recall that the Redskins top two receivers had 55 and 32 catches respectively. Third receiver Brandon Lloyd was the fifth overall pass catcher and fourth receiver James Thrash was the eighth overall pass catcher.
The Redskins fussed over who was going to be the number five receiver this year, signing and cutting 100 guys before settling on two starters for other teams from last season, Reche Caldwell and Keenan McCardell, both were signed after the season began.
In seven eligible games Reche has no catches, has been inactive five times and not played one of two times he was not inactive.
In five eligible games Keenan has four catches.
Brandon Lloyd who was left behind last week but apparently is still viable has two catches and James Thrash has three.
Curly R aside: after a honeymoon where I like the new NFL website it's back to annoying me. It's architecture forces long load times and any links from the old site are now dead except for player cards. Another thing that would be nice from the NFL website: in-context stats, or stats that evolve. Here I am linking to the NFL scoring stats but this same link will be different next week, next year and in 10000 years when Curly R is unearthed in an archaeological dig. It would be nice if for every stat I could have a link to that stat at that time. In other words I am linking to week 9 stats and I'd like to have a permanent link to these 2007 week 9 stats so future readers could review them in context.
So what is the point of all this? The Redskins offense requires only two full time receivers, the rest of the catches will come from the tight ends and backs. There is no succession of receivers on this team, there is Antwaan Randle El and Santana and the team goes as they go. Santana is having a terrible year with injuries (first recurring groin then heel last week) and Antwaan has been afflicted with the mysterious Redskins hamstring problem.
It doesn't matter who is number three, four or five receiver, there are simply no catches for them.
Why is this really a problem? Have a look at the statistical analysis Derek at Iggles Blog put together. It shows a high (almost 1.0) correlation between the Redskins number of rush attempts and rush average. The higher the one the higher the other.
Given how weak the run attack has been generally (the Jets game notwithstanding) this means the Redskins need to run a lot to run well. And if the offense becomes too one dimensional teams will simply load up eight or nine in the box and make the team beat opponents through the air and if there's no one to catch it there is no one to move the chains while the tailbacks get fed.
There must be balance in the Force.
Brandon Lloyd and Santana Moss Mike Marones / Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star from here.