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Posted at 12:55 PM ET, 10/08/2012

Redskins improve, still learning

The Redskins played their hearts out in Sunday’s 24-17 loss to the Falcons. Although there are no door prizes for losing games, it was important for the members of the defense to show up, and they did.

I left the game feeling good about how hard the Redskins competed. There were mistakes and misfortune, but all in all the team took some necessary steps forward.

Hopefully, quarterback Robert Griffin III learned a valuable lesson Sunday. As the leader of this team, he has to be in the game. Taking unnecessary hits as he did not only hurts him, but it hurts the team. I hope he realizes that a QB’s mentality has to be: “live to fight another down.”

Griffin’s biggest challenge will be to convince himself that he can’t make a big play every time, which is a good problem to have. He’s a winner, and winners do what they have to do to win. He will learn and he will be the better for it. But this was the most costly mistake the rookie has made so far.

The offensive line did a very nice job blocking. There were sacks, they weren’t all the o-line’s fault. They have to do a better job of identifying where the blitzer is coming from, and running back Alfred Morris has to know how to fit where he is needed in those situations. That will come.

Speaking of Morris, he is a bad boy running that rock. I really enjoy watching him run. He is a throwback type and I love it.

As for kicker Billy Cundiff, this might not be a popular opinion but I’m inclined to say the Redskins need to support and stick by him. He was chosen and signed with no type of competition. There are two reasons why this might happen and both are why he needs to stay. The first is that the two kickers he replaced, Neil Rackers and Graham Gano, were so bad they both had to go, and Cundiff was the best replacement available. Or he was the best kicker available and you didn’t want to risk not getting him. Kicker has been one of the most maligned positions on this team for years. As a former Redskins player, I had a ton of coaches, QB’s and guest kickers.

Keep him, encourage him, help him get his confidence back and if he’s a bust then deal with it in the off season.

I can’t miss pointing out the best special teams player in the National Football League. Lorenzo Alexander plays like Alexander the Great on special teams. This dude is a difference maker every time he touches the field, by far one of the most valuable players on this team so far.

Great effort. Sad it ended in a loss but there was improvement and that’s something to build on.

Leave your comments here and chat with me on twitter @lavararrington

By  |  12:55 PM ET, 10/08/2012

 
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