1. Here we go again: Will Clinton Portis play?
We thought he would play and he most certainly did, rushing for 143 yards – but leaving the game twice with a hip injury. He'll apparently be fine. Portis once again leads the NFL in rushing and his patience and vision is fun to watch. It's clear how much he trusts his blockers. Speaking of which: fullback Mike Sellers is having his best season as a lead blocker. We've felt that way for a long time, but Sunday re-affirmed our belief.
2. What impact will Shawn Springs have?
Obviously it helped a great deal. Springs was beaten on a couple pass plays, some of which were not completed. But his presence in the slot was huge. It gave the Redskins another weapon defensively – the corner blitz. He executed that several times successfully and even stuffed a run on one of them. His interception was a gift, but he was in the right spot.
3. Will Malcolm Kelly provide any help?
Well, he played but it's debatable how much he helped. His lack of experience in the red zone was telling. The Seahawks played for the fade and completely took it away, with the DB staying wide on him. Right now, it's the only route he can run inside the 20 on which he'll score. Everyone knows that.
4. Has the offensive line started to fade?
We didn't think they had, mainly because we haven't seen proof of that on the ground. Clearly, they run blocked well, creating large holes. They protected Jason Campbell well for the most part, especially in the second half. It helped to have control of the game.
5. Can they handle Seattle's pressure?
We thought they could and expected them to give up a sack or two. But Campbell can't complain about how much time he had overall. The Redskins kept the ends in to block, but did not appear to do that much more than normal. The line did a better job in one-on-one situations.
6. Will Seattle blitz a lot?
We thought they would, but the Seahawks see the same stats we see. And they led the league in plays allowed of 20 yards or more. Why? Because the corners can't handle when they blitz. Seattle did not blitz a lot, but Campbell hurt them when they did in the second half. Antwaan Randle El's touchdown came in part because LB Lofa Tatupu blitzed and vacated the middle.
7. How badly does Jim Zorn want to win?
Clearly he wanted to win a lot, but more so than beating Dallas? That's hard to believe. We didn't think he would make this a contest about proving how smart he is as a playcaller. In fact, it actually did prove that. The Seahawks could not stop the run; Zorn kept calling it. Smart.
8. How dangerous are the Seahawks offensively?
We thought they would be dangerous, but we were surprised by how well they ran the ball on Washington, hitting the edges hard with Maurice Morris. However, the Redskins confused Matt Hasselbeck by providing false looks that forced audibles. The ability to man cover in the secondary took away the Seahawks passing game. The Seahawks did hurt them by getting the Redskins in nickel coverage and running. But for the most part Washington should be pleased.
9. What are some matchups to watch?
Walter Jones kept Andre Carter quiet all day. Jason Taylor also rushed from that side a couple times, but got nowhere. Darryl Tapp rushed from the right side often and his speed enabled him to get around TE Todd Yoder on one occasion. Lofa Tatupu didn't get close to an INT against Jason Campbell. Outside of a couple plays, Tatupu was quiet.
10. Who will win?
Well, we almost nailed this score, predicting a 21-19 Redskins win. Which leads us to ask: why did we pick 19 points? But we loved the matchup of the Redskins' secondary vs. Seattle's passing game and that proved to be a huge plus for Washington. We thought the Redskins would hit more big plays, but the Redskins did enough to squeak out another win over a bad team. That beats a pretty loss to a great team.
John Keim covers the Redskins for the Washington Examiner and is a contributing editor for Warpathinsiders.com. He has covered the team since 1994. Some of his other stories can be found at dcexaminer.com
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