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Lou's View: Rookies Provide An Early Spark


The Redskins wanted and needed to get younger this year – the roster is indicative of that.

For the first time in who knows how long, the Redskins produced a deep draft and the top pick (linebacker Ryan Kerrigan, first round) and last pick (nose tackle Chris Neild, seventh round) paid immediate dividends.

Sprinkle in Fred Davis, a 2008 second-round pick, and for one week you can praise the talent evaluation of the front office.

Besides the emergence of the draft picks, Rex Grossman showed that he can maneuver in this offense. The only downside about Grossman's third 300-yard passing game in four Redskins starts that he was hit by the Giants' defense an awful lot.

Pass protection was less than stellar and Grossman's mobility was not quick enough to escape the pressure. If this continues, Rex will be replaced not due to performance but due to injury.

Arizona comes across country this week and one would think that if rookie quarterback Cam Newton can throw for over 400 yards in his pro debut against the Cardinals defense, then Rex should be able to have yet another decent passing game. That should be fine for his hungry group of wide receivers.

On defense, LaRon Landry is questionable for the Redskins secondary. He was limited in practice. If he is unable to play, then that could mean more maneuvering at strong safety.

Defensive coordinator Jim Haslett told the media this week that Reed Doughty played well last Sunday and too much is being made of the plays where time he was beat.

Doughty has strengths but covering deep in space is not one of them and with arguably the best wide receiver in the game in Larry Fitzgerald coming to town, some secondary tweaking is a must. Could we see more Kevin Barnes or rookie DeJon Gomes?

Two keys for the Redskins on Sunday are pressuring Kevin Kolb so he can't get the ball to Fitzgerald and getting Tim Hightower established on the ground against his former team. The run game could have been better against the Giants, but the fact that the team stayed with it was major!

Two stats that stuck out and need to be highlighted.

First is that the Redskins were only penalized three times for 25 yards. Discipline will keep this team in ball games.

Second is that five of the Giants drives started inside the 20-yard line, with three of those coming off great punts by Sav Rocca. Field position is going to be huge for this defense to be able to tee off on opponents, so continue to keep your eyes on how Rocca's leg can indirectly put points on the board for the defense.

After getting into a rhythm the Redskins looked decent in the opener and should have more success at home on Sunday. Let's temper the emotions just a bit. It's a long season. Rremember a few years ago when the Redskins started 6-2 and ended up 8-8?

A different coach and different players are present now, which is a positive, but the NFL season can be a funny thing. Handle with caution.

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