Pick-Six Preview: Redskins At Packers
Here is our first look at Sunday’s game between the Washington Redskins (3-9) and Green Bay Packers (9-3).
Washington Redskins (3-9) at Green Bay Packers (9-3)
The vitals: Noon Sunday at Lambeau Field
TV: Fox (Kenny Albert, Ronde Barber, Lindsay Czarniak)
Series: The Packers lead 18-15-1, though the Redskins have won the last two.
The last time: Last year in Washington, Adrian Peterson rushed for 120 yards and two touchdowns and Alex Smith threw for 220 yards and two more touchdowns. Green Bay trailed 28-10 at halftime.
The 15th pick of this year’s draft, Dwayne Haskins was elevated into the starting position after the Redskins’ 1-7 start behind Case Keenum. Haskins has been terrible but the Redskins have won his last two starts. If Haskins had enough attempts to qualify, he would rank last in the league in completion percentage, yards per attempt, interception percentage and passer rating. He’s got a big-time arm but has been incredibly inaccurate. Even in Washington’s winning “streak,” he’s completed only 48.1 percent of his passes.
“Every week he’s doing something he didn’t do last week,” running back Derrius Guice said. “We need him. He’s the leader of the offense. We need him to keep extending plays like he’s been doing. We need to get out of the pocket and finish (plays). I feel like he’s doing a great job of picking it up and learning as he goes, and implementing it on the field.”
His top weapon
The Redskins figure to lean on their running game, and the man they figure to lean on is someone quite familiar to Packers fans.
In 18 career games against Green Bay, Peterson has rushed for 1,899 yards, averaged 5.20 yards per carry and scored 15 touchdowns. In last year’s game, Peterson averaged 6.32 yards per carry. It was the highlight of a 1,000-yard season – 1,042 yards, to be exact – his first since 2015 with Minnesota. At age 34, Peterson has rushed for 642 yards this season. He’ll need to average 89.5 yards over his final four games to reach 1,000 yards again. Against a leaky Packers defense that is 28th with 4.69 yards per carry, who knows how many yards he’ll gain on Sunday.
With 4.5 sacks, this is not outside linebacker Ryan Kerrigan’s finest season. Maybe it’s the departure of his former sidekick, Preston Smith, to Green Bay. Whatever the reason, Kerrigan hasn’t provided the big-play punch of past seasons. A first-round pick in 2011, Kerrigan is a four-time Pro Bowler. Last year, he recorded his second consecutive season of 13 sacks. In 2016, he led the NFL with 18 tackles for losses.
After starting the first 139 games of his career, Kerrigan was inactive last week due to a concussion. If he’s back in the lineup, he’ll rush primarily against right tackle Bryan Bulaga.
14.4: Washington’s last-ranked scoring average. Other than checking in at No. 10 in yards per rushing attempt, the Redskins are bad in just about every way imaginable. They are 32nd in total offense, passing offense and third-down conversions, 31st in the red zone and 30th in sack percentage.