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Paul Woody: Redskins Report Card


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Grades Washington's 27-24 loss to Chicago Dec 23, 2003


PASSING Tim Hasselbeck had a rough start, missing badly on his first six passes. One of them even bounced off an upright. After that, Hasselbeck was 16 of 19 for 209 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions on a windy afternoon. Wide receiver Laveranues Coles, playing with a stress fracture in his right foot, caught seven passes for 94 yards. WR Rod Gardner not only caught two passes for 29 yards, he also threw a touchdown pass and should have had a second. How the officials could not see that Hasselbeck caught Gardner's pass for a touchdown in the second quarter, ruling it incomplete on the field and after a replay review, remains baffling.


RUNNING NFL experts have determined that it is impossible to gain yards on the ground when you do not have the ball. The Redskins had the ball for three possessions in the second half. They gained 17 yards on six carries. The longest run of the day was 8 yards by Rock Cartwright. Washington has a line that blocks well for the run. They Redskins lack a legitimate running back now, and they often lack the opportunity to use the running game to control the clock.


DEFENSE Yards rushing by the Bears: 191. Yards passing by the Bears: 249. Third-down conversion rate by the Bears: 53 percent. Time of possession by the Bears (out of 60 minutes): 37:54. Third quarter plays by the Bears: 25. Bears' second half points: 17. When Chicago absolutely, positively had to be stopped, Washington couldn't do it.


SPECIAL TEAMS John Hall missed a 31-yard field goal attempt that could have averted a loss in regulation, at least. Bryan Barker had a decent day punting, but the punt-coverage team permitted R.W. McQuarters to average 14 yards per return, including a 32-yarder. Chad Morton's 20-yard punt return set up a touchdown for the Redskins.


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