Before we go hog wild with playoff coverage, Peter Hailey takes a look back at the best moments from the NFC East title-winning season.
I’m just as hungry for some Wisconsin cheese as you are, devoted Redskins fan, but before we look ahead to Green Bay, let’s take a quick look back at all the Burgundy and Gold have accomplished this year. Because what’s the fun in having a fantastic, surprising, middle-finger-to-the-doubters season if you don’t stop and cherish it for a little?
Here are my “Best Of’s” for the 2015 Washington Redskins...
Best Overall Game
: While the 47-14 demolition of the Saints was a very strong candidate, I have to give it to the division clinching win in Philadelphia in Week 16. Picking up the NFC East title, in Lincoln Financial Field, against the unbearable Chip Kelly, with the help of a terrible DeMarco Murray fumble, and ending it with DeSean Jackson
trolling Eagles fans, was truly sweet. Kirk Cousins
throwing four touchdowns and Jordan Reed
embarrassing Philly linebackers all evening was a lot of fun to watch, too.
: Over the course of a 16-game schedule, lots of big plays happen, meaning lots of big-play celebrations happen. Chris Baker
, however, delivered top-notch dances, shimmies and Dabs every Thursday
he suited up. This gem was just one example of a guy who had a tremendous campaign, both in terms of on-field production and post-whistle hilarity:
Best Individual Performance: This one is basically a pick ‘em between a few of Cousins’ best efforts, but I’ll hand it to him for his play against the Bucs in what will forever be known as the “You Like That” game: 33/40, 317 passing yards, three passing touchdowns and one rushing score (and one viral Vine that has been seen by millions of people and imitated by thousands).
Best Reaction To One Of The Most Idiotic, Nausea-Inducing Plays In Franchise History: The Redskins, after DeSean Jackson ran backwards and then fumbled against the Cowboys on Monday Night Football. Since then, Washington is 4-0, including 3-0 on the road. When that play happened, I truly thought the team would fall apart. Instead, they got stronger. Kudos to everyone involved for that.
Best Single Play
: Interested to see if other people come up with different choices, but for me, my favorite was the Matt Jones
78-yard screen pass against New Orleans. Jones got a lot of help from his big boys up front, and he made some smooth cuts of his own, too. I’ve yelled at my TV at levels many would describe as inappropriate during this Redskins’ campaign (for good moments such as the heart-stopping tip play in Chicago, and bad ones like Odell’s disgusting one-handed grab at FedEx Field), but I don’t remember being as proud of a play as this one:
Best in-season Pickup: This is like naming your favorite Chipotle ingredient — so many choices. But I’m awarding this one to Will Blackmon. He went from being one of those transactions you have to squint to read in the newspaper to a starting cornerback with two interceptions and three forced fumbles. What a boss pickup by the Boss, Scot McCloughan.
: Preston Smith
came on as of late, but I have a soft spot for wide receivers (I always make my “Create a Player” in Madden a wideout, and I always line up as one during the unsightly games I play with friends) so Jamison Crowder is taking it home for me. When a fourth-round pick ends a season with 59 catches for over 500 yards and a pair of scores, you’re doing something right. Smith, Brandon Scherff and Matt Jones all starred as well, but Crowder, in my mind, was the best out of the bunch.
Best Way To End The Regular Season: Another team award, as there’s no better way to finish out the year than stomping the Cowboys in their expensive stadium despite playing backups for more than a half. Here’s hoping the playoffs are as fun as Week 17 was.
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