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Skins.com:Jackson: 'We Need to Finish Games Stronger'


Redskins Best Approach for Remaing Games  

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  1. 1. Redskins Best Approach for Remaing Games

    • Play All Starters (win for momentum)
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Jackson: 'We Need to Finish Games Stronger'


From the Sidelines

With Hue Jackson

The Redskins have had their opportunities to win games in the fourth quarter each of the last three weeks, but the offense has stalled in the final minutes. Earlier this year against the Giants, Patrick Ramsey led the Redskins on a dramatic comeback to tie the game at FedExField, but New York won in overtime. Offensive coordinator Hue Jackson spoke with Redskins.com about the two-minute offense mentality as the team prepared the Week 13 game against the New York Giants:

Q: The Redskins were effective earlier in the season with the two-minute offense, but it’s stalled the last few weeks. In a general sense, what’s the mentality needed to close out games?

A: “The mentality is simple: determination. To score whatever points you need, be it a touchdown or a field goal. We’ve tried to go through that process with our two-minute offense and we’ve come up short the last three weeks. It’s very frustrating, because we play 58 minutes of good football on offense, defense and special teams and we’re not able to close it out. The frustration level is very high. We’re in position to win games, we’re just not closing it out.”

Q: Is it a skill Tim Hasselbeck needs to develop as he continues to learn the quarterback position at the NFL level?

A: “It’s not about Tim or any one player on offense, defense or special teams. It's about the team making plays. We’ve had our chances. Maybe we need to put ourselves in better position to make the plays, but the bottom line is this: We need to finish games stronger. At some point, one of the units has to be able to close out the game, shut the door, win it and go home. We did it earlier in the year, against New York, New England and Seattle, so we have the ability to do that. We know the ability is there, they just have to believe in themselves and go get it done.”

Q: With the Giants, is it any easier to face a team for the second time in a season?

A: “The Giants have changed since the last time we saw them. We know who they are: they’re a division rival, but they’ll have changes in their personnel and in their game plan. Look at us, we have Tim Hasselbeck at quarterback and an entirely different left side of the offensive line since the last time we played the Giants. We’ll have to adjust our game plan given that personnel.”

Q: We’ve all heard the weather forecast for this weekend. Lots of snow, frigid conditions and there’s always wind at Giants Stadium. Will this alter the offensive game plan?

A: “We’ll run our offense; we might do a few things differently according to the weather, but not too much. I think the officials do a good job of taking care of the balls and making sure they’re not wet. New York will have to play with the same balls we play with and they’re going to play on the same field we play on. I don’t see the weather being a hindrance—it’s only as big as you make it. The biggest thing is, we need to execute our offense and play at a high level.”

Q: Did Trung Canidate take a step forward in becoming the team’s lead runner with his performance last week against New Orleans?

A: “He had a good game. He could have had a better game. There were some runs I’m sure he wishes he had back. It’s frustrating that we haven’t had a 100-yard rusher until this late in the season, but that doesn’t take anything away from his day. He’s coming on after the ankle injury he had earlier this year and he knows he has to keep playing better.”

Hue Jackson is in his first season as offensive coordinator with the Redskins after serving two years as running backs coach. He previously spent four years as offensive coordinator at USC. Jackson is regarded by players as a high-energy, hands-on teacher and motivator. Look for his Q&A column every week on Redskins.com

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