Back on Week 3, the Redskins had a real chance to inflict some serious damage to the New York Giants.
The Giants were 0-2 at that point and looked to be a team in disarray--particularly after they fell behind the Redskins 17-3 by halftime at FedExField.
Unfortunately for the Redskins, the Giants got up off the mat at that point. They rallied to beat Washington 24-17 and have since won six straight.
All of a sudden, Tom Coughlin doesn't seem like such an ogre in New York.
Next Sunday, the Redskins have an apparent opportunity to bury another NFC East opponent. They let the Giants escape harm's way but they shouldn't squander the chance to make things miserable for Philadelphia when the Eagles visit FedExField.
Philly stands at 3-5 after being routed at home by Dallas 38-17 in a Sunday Night matchup. What has to hurt most is that Terrell Owens produced 10 catches, 174 yards and a TD in Lincoln Financial Field. It was his second trip to that venue since being discarded by the Eagles.
A sixth loss in Philly's column by Week 10 would relegate Andy Reid's crew to the margins of the NFC East chase.
As far as the Redskins are concerned, beating the Jets 23-20 in overtime was a wonderful achievement and lifts Washington to 5-3.
But what's ahead are even more significant challenges, which is to say back-to-back NFC East games. First, it's Philly at FedExField and then it's at Dallas on Week 11.
The Cowboys right now look to be the class of the division at 7-1. Next week, they're at the Meadowlands, where the Giants have a chance to bring them back to the pack.
At the very least, it's easy to see that things are starting to heat up in the NFC East, the only division in the NFC with three teams over .500-the Cowboys (7-1), Giants (6-2) and Redskins (5-3).
The AFC South has three teams over .500 with Indianapolis (7-1), Tennessee (6-2) and Jacksonville (5-3).
Jason Campbell was outstanding against Detroit, Clinton Portis was exceptional versus the Jets and Chris Cooley excelled at Green Bay. But for the most part the Redskins have yet to put it all together offensively.
The next two weeks, versus Philly and at Dallas, will demand as much, as the Redskins first try to down grade the Eagles and then pull back the Cowboys.
You know that no matter how much you try to analyze these NFC East affairs, it's Week 17, Dallas at Redskins, that always seems to resonate.