Redskins-Cowboys: Gameday notes for Week 17

December 30, 2012

DeJon Gomes and his defensive teammates forced three turnovers (two interceptions and a fumble recovery) in their first meeting with the Cowboys. (AP Photo/Tim Sharp)

 

The Redskins’ highly-anticipated game against the Dallas Cowboys is now hours away.

The Redskins need either a victory over Dallas, or combined losses by the Chicago Bears and Minnesota Vikings to advance to the postseason.

A win over the Cowboys will give Washington its first NFC East title since 1999.

A loss to Dallas and a win by either Chicago or Minnesota will send the Redskins home for the year with a 9-7 record.

As Mike Shanahan said earlier this week, “Well, these are the games you are going to remember for the rest of your life. Win or go home. I don’t care what playoff game, when I look back, as an assistant or a head coach, you go back and think about the great experiences that you had or the bad memories that you had because you want to take advantage of these opportunities when they exist. They don’t come around every day. When they do come around you want to make sure that you play your best and you are prepared. You prepare yourself in the best possible way. The attention to detail is there – you can’t make mistakes. The concentration level has got to be there and that’s the way it usually works during the week, so those guys are ready to go on game time.”

Kickoff is set for 8:20 p.m. and the game will air on NBC.

Here are some things to look for in this game:

  • The Redskins are 484 yards away from setting a team record for total net offensive yardage in a season (6,253 gained in 1989).
  • Running back Alfred Morris needs 104 yards to break Clinton Portis’ franchise record for single-season rushing yards (1,516 in 2005).
  • Morris (1,413 yards) and quarterback Robert Griffin III (752) have combined for 2,165 rushing yards this season – the most by a pair of teammates in team history. That total tops the season output of 27 NFL teams this season.
  • Morris needs 87 yards to reach the 1,500-yard mark and become the second back in team history to do so.
  • A victory would give the Redskins a 10-6 record – their best since 2005. That season, Washington closed out the regular season with five straight wins, then beat Tampa Bay in the opening round of the playoffs before losing at Seattle in the next round.
  • A win would also give Washington a 5-1 record in the division – the best since 2005.
  • A zero-turnover game by the offense would set a new franchise record. This Redskins team has recorded five turnover-free games, which is tied for the best in team history with the 1999 and 2008 squads.
  • Washington has committed just 14 turnovers this season – two below the franchise record of 16, set in 1982.
  • The Redskins need 191 rushing yards to break the team record for the most in a season (2,625 set in 1983).
  • The Redskins have scored 30 points or more seven times this season. An eighth such output would tie the franchise record of eight (1991).
  • The Redskins’ defense has recorded six multiple-interception games this season. A seventh would tie the team record of seven (also set in 1991).
  • Three of this season’s 18 interceptions have been returned for touchdowns. The franchise record of four was set in 1984.
  • Washington has recorded four defensive touchdowns this season (three interceptions, one fumble recovery) – the most since the 1994 team scored five.
  • Linebacker London Fletcher, who is playing in his 240th consecutive game, has notched a career-high five interceptions this season. A sixth interception would give him the team record for picks by a linebacker. He currently is tied with Wilber Marshall (1991) and Jack Pardee (1971).
  • Fletcher has recorded an interception in three consecutive games. The last Redskins player with an interception in four straight games was Sean Taylor in games 3-6 of the 2007 season.
  • Kicker Kai Forbath looks to extend his perfect streak of 17 consecutive field goals made (an NFL record).
  • Griffin on his first passing will surpass Norm Sneed’s record for attempts by a rookie (375 with 1961).
  • In his last game against the Cowboys, Griffin threw four touchdown passes. With another four-touchdown outing, he would join Sonny Jurgensen as the only quarterbacks in team history with at least three such games in one season. Jurgensen had two (1964, ’67).
  • Second-year linebacker Ryan Kerrigan needs 1.5 sacks to reach 10 on the season. No Redskins has had double-digit sacks since Brian Orakpo’s 11 in 2009.
  • Receiver Santana Moss needs one touchdown to match his single-season best as a Redskin (nine in 2005), and one to become the first Redskins player since Gary Clark in 1991 to record 10 touchdown receptions in a season.
Mike Jones covers the Washington Redskins for The Washington Post. When not writing about a Redskins development of some kind – which is rare – he can be found screaming and cheering at one of his kids’ softball, baseball, soccer or basketball games.
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