Eight Games to Go, Five Things to Watch
1. Formula One
The offense still can't score, and rarely has the team been able to run the ball well and establish a vertical passing attack in the same game. Getting the wideouts into the end zone and averaging closer to five yards per carry is essential, injuries or not.
2. Happy Medium
The Redskins had gone weeks without blitzing, then brought heavy pressure against the Jets, with mixed results. They must find the balance between an aggressive nature and stopping the big passing plays that sank the defense in 2006.
3. Health Conscious
The chance to get dominant right guard Randy Thomas back from a long-term injury in December would be a boost, but more injuries to the offensive line or secondary, in particular, could be crushing.
4. Special Delivery
Special teams has been responsible for game-breaking plays, both positively and negatively. With most every game going down to the wire, punter Derrick Frost and place kicker Shaun Suisham stand to face intense pressure, and onside kicks have already factored into two outcomes.
5. Homeland Security
Some very difficult road games are looming -- at New York, Tampa Bay and Dallas -- which makes it all the more imperative that the Redskins take care of business at FedEx Field. Seven of their final eight games are against NFC foes and will have huge tiebreaker ramifications.