The injury-prone RG3 is sidelined yet again courtesy of a concussion suffered against the Lions. Will this affect the way we view Washington’s NFL odds for total wins this season?
Jay Gruden – What Were You Thinking?
NFL head coaches are occasionally seen roaming the sidelines and only heard in postgame press conferences. The X’s and O’s of their game plan reveals itself as the game is played but rarely does a coach’s decision draw the ire and scrutiny of those watching as the success or failure of a team rests largely with the players. But every now and again something so head scratching and curiously fascinating occurs that it shines a white hot spotlight on the man calling the shots. Pete Carroll knows all about this and now so too does Jay Gruden.
Last night the Washington Redskins scored a 21-17 Pyrrhic victory over the Detroit Lions in a game that no one would remember except for the head coach’s mind-boggling decision to leave his franchise quarterback on the field after getting pummeled with a makeshift offensive lien that was decidedly overmatched from the get-go. Quarterback Robert Griffin III trotted onto the field and into the fire as blindside bodyguard Trent Williams rested with a sore knee and was replaced by a player in Willie Smith who probably won’t make the final roster. Despite a deluge of menacing Lions swarming him in the backfield Griffin stood tall, didn’t flinch and tried desperately to find a target before hitting the turf time after time. After the second series it was obvious to even the most casual fan that no good was going to come to RG III or anyone under center until the offensive line found a way to contain the enormous pressure wrought by Detroit.
Ultimately Gruden stuck to his guns and sent RG III out for a fourth series despite his QB being whacked on six of eight passing attempts including three sacks. The last hit and fait accompli came when Griffin and 284-pound defensive end Corey Wooten both dove for a loose football and guess who came up the loser? Washington lost the ball to Detroit as well as their starting quarterback to a concussion. Kirk Cousins and Colt McCoy pinch hit the rest of the way but the man the ‘Skins are counting on to lead them from the cellar to the penthouse was on a trainer’s table and his status going forward is uncertain.
Are the Redskins a Fade?
Taking a gander at current NFL Odds and we find that sportsbooks are hanging a line of 6 to 6 ½ total wins on the season for the beleaguered franchise. RG III is supposed to be the straw that stirs this proverbial drink but his status is unknown and even if he is ready to welcome the Miami Dolphins at FedEx Field in Week 1 will he be completely healthy and devoid of any lingering effects from this latest setback? Concussions are no joke in the NFL and we must assume the doctors and coaches will err on the side of caution regarding his fitness to play.
As of this writing the NFL odds for Washington’s home tilt with Miami shows that the line has moved up half a click from Miami -2 ½ to 3. But as any seasoned bettor knows that is one huge half click and could be crucial if the game lands on a field goal. But more importantly what does this do to the Redskins’ prospects for this season? Washington will have the services of Trent Williams to protect Griffin’s blindside but the right side of the line is still a work in progress. Regardless of who is back there the ‘Skins don’t look like a team ready to protect their quarterback. Perhaps it could be argued that Kirk Cousins would be the better choice but regardless it’s a pretty fair bet that this won’t be the last injury for RG3.
In your NFL picks fade Washington and go under 6 ½ (-150) at Wagerweb.com