By: Aaron Greenberg
Last night was one of the worst games I've seen the Washington Redskins play in a long time, and by far the worst in prime time since Michael Vick and the Eagles tore us to shreds in 2010. The Redskins defense came into the night ranked 1st in points against, they had played stout and smart defense. Ranking in the top ten in almost every defensive category. All summer the Redskins boasted how their young secondary was going to rejuvenate the defense, and for the most part they have Quinton Dunbar in his first season seeing major minutes has stepped up and locked down the left side of the Redskins defense. Fabian Moreau with the exception of last night has filled in for Kendall Fuller admirably in the slot. Safeties DJ Swearinger and Montae Nicholson have firmed up the back end for the Redskins and for the most part not allowed big plays to hurt this defense. The one outlier to this defensive progress is the guy who is supposed to be the poster head for it. Josh Norman, Norman wasn’t great last year and has been even worse this year allowing a 156.3 QBR when thrown at and FYI 158.3 is considered a perfect passer rating. But the problems with Norman have once again started to extend off the field. Last night the Redskins decided to bench Norman to start the second half. Following rookie Greg Stroman giving up a 30 yard touchdown, Norman was reinserted into the lineup, yet post game all Josh Norman seemed to want to do is talk crap with Michael Thomas. The Redskins lost this game 43-19 the 7th year corner should have had bigger fish to fry.
Retired CB Deangelo Hall was quoted this morning saying he believes that Norman is too focused on being a celebrity and not focused enough on being a football player, and in all honesty I'm with him. Norman is infatuated with fame and himself. He wants to be the guy in the pictures and in the news just like his old buddy Odell Beckham Jr. As a fan it's starting to get ridiculous, and for the first time in a long time I think the Redskins actually have options. Greg Stroman did not look great last night, but had a strong preseason and has a good work ethic and rapport with corner backs coach Torian Grey. The knock on Stroman is his size, though he is measured at 5-11 he is only 180 pounds and could be taken advantage of by physical receivers. Next is Adonis Alexander, maybe the opposite of the spectrum. The supplemental draft pick, who is yet to be active on gameday, has an extremely high ceiling and his size is already an advantage standing at 6-3 and weighing in at 207 pounds. At the end of the day I think this coaching staff has done a good job getting the defense ready for this season, they’ve got great pieces up front and in the secondary. They've shown they can play well but Norman seems to be lacking and I think it's time to let Dunbar step up and give the young guys (Stroman, Alexander, Danny Johnson) more reps with the number one guys. There is a lot of football ahead of us, and if I'm the Redskins its time to try to explore options with Norman, god knows they could use a wide receiver.
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