ASHBURN, Va. --Strike up the band for a Victory Monday around the nation's capital - something that happens so rarely that we need to be careful not to treat this as if Washington Football Team has won a Super Bowl.
In reality, a simple win over the struggling Cincinnati Bengals, who lost their stud quarterback, Joe Burrow early in the third quarter, is a modest accomplishment. That said, a win is a win.
After a solid performance on Sunday, however, questions remain. Was this a case of good team football? Or the happenstance of an injury to a critical piece of the Cincinnati puzzle? And can it happen again on Thursday at Dallas?
Earlier in the day, we gave out our 'Victory Monday' celebration cigars to the offense. Now it is time to hand out some recognition for the other side of the ball, after the 20-9 win over Burrow's Bengals.
Ronald Darby: The Washington corner broke up two potential touchdown passes, one which led to a 34-yard missed field goal and had the fumble recovery on a Chase Young hit.
Darby was graded an 88.6/100 by ProFootballFocus.com in coverage for the game and was targeted 13 times, allowing only five receptions for 52 yards with five tackles.
Kendall Fuller: As it turns out, we were wrong about Fuller's role being elevated at free safety. Instead, Troy Apke played most of the game at the position and performed well enough as to be expected.
Fuller had two passes defended the bounce-back effort, following a rough performance in Detroit. Per PFF, he was targeted nine times, allowing four receptions and 45 yards through the air. He also had two tackles.
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Jonathan Allen: Allen finished the day with three quarterback hits and three tackles on Sunday. Overall, according to PFF he finished with five pressures and was the second-highest graded defensive player for the game.
Tim Settle The highest-graded defensive player for Washington, Settle played just a handful of snaps compared to Allen but finished with four quarterback pressures and a sack.
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Chase Young: The rookie phenom showed up in a big way on Sunday, making impact plays in more ways than one throughout the game, as we wrote here. Despite that, Young made every difference in Washington's win, helping them inch closer to the division lead in the process. ... a process that now continues on Thanksgiving against the Dallas Cowboys.