Cousins, drafted by the Redskins in the fourth round

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Cousins, drafted by the Redskins in the fourth round

Postby zhangzk » Thu Jan 09, 2020 3:31 am

Jay Gruden occasionally has to remind people his team is in 6-3 and in first place.“That’s a heck of deal after nine games Montez Sweat Jersey ,” the Washington Redskins‘ coach said. “But I’m also excited with the fact that we have not played our best yet, and I think the best is yet to come.”It wasn’t been a flawless ride, but when the roller-coaster Redskins host the rolling Houston Texans on Sunday, it’ll be a showdown between two surprising division leaders. Washington has gotten into first place in the NFC East alternating strong and weak performances, and Houston has won six in a row to also reach 6-3 and sit atop the AFC South.Led by veterans Alex Smith and Adrian Peterson, the Redskins come into the matchup motivated by a lack of respect. Second-year quarterback Deshaun Watson and the Texans are full of confidence after digging out of an 0-3 hole.“Winning helps,” Houston coach Bill O’Brien said. “Everybody has confidence in their ability to go out there and play well, but I also think our team understands that this is a very humbling league. This is a league, it’s a short walk. It’s a short walk from where you are right now to where you were when you were 0-3.”It’s a very short walk for the Redskins from their best to their worst. A three-game October winning streak and last week’s victory at Tampa Bay didn’t show their best.So there’s reason why, despite leading the division by two games, Washington isn’t getting the same buzz as other playoff contenders. Players are just fine with that.“Nobody’s really looking at the Redskins or anything,” middle linebacker Zach Brown said. “For us, we’re just going to keep trying to stack up the wins and see where we can take it. For us, we just need an invite to the dance because you never know what might happen.”Peterson figures it’s too early to think playoffs, but said: “You can definitely have it in the back of your mind and understand how important each and every game is.”Coming off their bye week, the Texans fully understand the value of every game to their chances of winning a third division title in four seasons.“We have to win against the Redskins to even keep conversations like that alive,” defensive end J.J. Watt said. “If you start to look that far ahead and you start to think about things like that, that’s when you get blindsided.”Some things to watch when the Texans visit the Redskins:WHAT A COMEBACKWatt and Peterson are top candidates for the NFL’s Comeback Player of the Year award after turning in strong performances in their return from two straight seasons that were cut short by injuries.Watt played just eight games in the previous two seasons because of back surgeries and a broken leg. Peterson missed 19 games in the 2016 and 2017 seasons combined because of knee surgery and a neck injury.Watt is tied for third in the NFL with nine sacks and tied for first by forcing four fumbles. He also has 16 quarterback hits, 11 tackles for losses and has swatted down two passes.Peterson is tied for fifth in the league with 672 yards rushing and has scored four touchdowns.Watt raved about Peterson’s comeback.“He’s obviously one of the great running backs of the game,” Watt said. “What he’s been able to do in his career, but then to be able to come back the way he has and have the type of season he’s having — obviously Wes Martin Jersey , I know how difficult it is from firsthand experience to come back from injuries, so I’m extremely impressed by what he’s been able to do. I have a ton of respect for his game. It’s always a good challenge to play against him and I enjoy the competition.”SWEARINGER REVENGE GAMERedskins safety D.J. Swearinger, who was drafted by the Texans in the second round in 2013 and cut after the 2014 season, has not been shy to rip O’Brien. He posted on Instagram this week about “unprofessional actions” by O’Brien that led to his release, which his former coach responded to by saying he didn’t know what Swearinger was talking about.“D.J. made a lot of plays for us here,” O’Brien said. “He’s a very instinctive, tough, competitive player. He’s obviously gone on to Arizona and now in Washington and I think he’s a captain there and he’s (second in) the league in interceptions, doing a great job, has got excellent ball skills, good tackler, tough, competitive guy.”WATSON DOWNOnly the Giants‘ Eli Manning and Cowboys‘ Dak Prescott have been sacked more this season than Watson. The Texans quarterback said he tries to get back as close to the line of scrimmage as possible so as not to lose yardage on his 30 sacks.Brown has noticed on film that defenses can force sacks on Watson when they lock down on coverage because the young QB holds on to the ball so long trying to make something happen.“I think he’s just trying to make plays,” Brown said. “He’s still young. Eventually he’ll get that clock ticking in his head.” WASHINGTON (AP)Kansas City has agreed to trade quarterback Alex Smith to Washington, a move that spells the end of Kirk Cousins’ time with the Redskins and hands the Chiefs’ job to Patrick Mahomes. Two people with direct knowledge of the deal confirmed the move to The Associated Press on Tuesday night on condition of anonymity because the transaction can’t be completed until the start of the new league year in March. One person told the AP the Redskins had agreed to a four-year extension with Smith, who had one year left on his contract. Smith, who turns 34 in May, spent the past five seasons with the Chiefs, leading them to the playoffs four times while throwing for 102 touchdowns and 33 interceptions. He carries a $17 million salary-cap hit for 2018. Kansas City saves cap space and can turn to Mahomes, the 10th pick in last year’s draft out of Texas Tech, as its new starter. Smith becomes Washington’s new franchise quarterback after throwing for 31 Dwayne Haskins Jersey ,888 yards and 183 touchdowns in 12 NFL seasons with the San Francisco 49ers and Chiefs. Smith is ”one of the best competitors and teammates I’ve ever been around,” Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce posted on Twitter. ”Someone who I owe a lot of my success to, and a guy that’s been a class act through all the ups n downs.” The Redskins acquired Smith and signed him to the kind of long-term deal they balked at with Cousins, who became the first QB to play back-to-back seasons on the franchise tag. Cousins can become a free agent next month at age 29. ”Nothing really surprises me anymore,” Redskins tight end Niles Paul tweeted . Former Redskins QB Robert Griffin III tweeted : ”Some how…Some way…they will blame this on me. No doubt.” out of Michigan State in 2012 – the same year they traded up to Griffin with the No 2 pick – likely leaves Washington with the fourth-most passing yards in franchise history, more than 16,000. Under coach Jay Gruden, Cousins became the first Redskins QB to start all 16 games for three consecutive seasons. He threw for at least 4,000 yards in each, while totaling 81 touchdowns and 36 interceptions. But Washington only played in one playoff game during that span, going 9-7, 8-7-1 and, most recently, 7-9 in Cousins’ time as a starter. Cousins has been the biggest question hovering over Washington’s offseason – and, indeed, hovering over the whole organization for a couple of years as the team failed to sign him to a long-term deal. According to ESPN, Washington is sending a third-round draft pick and cornerback Kendall Fuller to Kansas City in the trade, which cannot be finalized until March 14. The Kansas City Star first reported the deal. This is the second time a team coached by Andy Reid has traded a 33-year-old QB to the Redskins. Reid’s Philadelphia Eagles dealt Donovan McNabb to Washington in 2010 for second- and third-round picks. — AP Sports Writer Dave Skretta and Pro Football Writer Howard Fendrich contributed to this report. —
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