Redskins Season Opener and NFL Kick Offs

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Cindy Boren
Washington Post NFL Editor
Monday, September 14, 2009; 11:00 AM

Post NFL Editor Cindy Boren was online Monday, Sep. 14 to take your questions about the Redskins season opener against the Giants, the start of the NFL season and all the breaking news in the NFL.

Read more: Full Coverage of the NFL.

Discuss the NFL: The League

A transcript follows.

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Cindy Boren: Howdy...well, if we don't have a lot of things to discuss today. We might have to work right through lunch and bump Wilbon's chat later.

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Boren-ville: Good thing we upgraded the punter! He's now tied for most points scored on the team. He's got more points than Portis! More than Moss!

(Shakes head in horror and disbelief...)

Cindy Boren: Ah, if only there were a Boren-ville....pretty flowers everywhere, but not too much Nature...kind of a giant beergarden! Yeah, that's it. I want to go to there. Upgrading the punter was HUGE although, I'm out on the limb here, the fake field goal isn't going to work every game. They might have to find another gadget, like a fake punt.

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Herndon, Va.: Fat Albert and MeAngelo Hall both got fat paychecks in the offseason. And they both looked bad yesterday. Coincidence? I don't think so.

This is Exhibit A as to why Snyder's philosophy is so incredibly stupid.

Cindy Boren: Well, in their defense, they were playing a pretty good team. That said, I know that no one expected Haynesworth to be a 16-game guy, but I didn't expect to see him gassed at 16 minutes...as for Hall, he makes great plays and he gives 'em up. That was the story on him all along. He was pretty stand-up about his performance last night, though.

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Alexandria, Va.: Can we stop with this "Campbell was under siege" nonsense? I was shocked by how well the line protected him yesterday against the best front four in football. On the fumble for a touchdown, Campbell had all day to throw. Heck, Manning got hit more than Campbell yesterday.

Cindy Boren: The line did protect him pretty well. The problems seemed, to me, to be more matters of playcalling, inability to change up at the line and inability to do quick check-downs. Again, though, the Giants are a pretty formidable defense.

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Laurel, Md.: Is it too early yet to begin the Cowher/Shanahan/Gruden/Dungy/Holmgren watch?

Cindy Boren: I don't want to get all technical on you, but it began before they were taking down the Lombardi trophies after Zorn's introductory presser, didn't it? Only the Redskins introduce a new coach AND invite speculation about his successor SIMULTANEOUSLY. The Shanahan rumors/buzz have been out there since winter; today Peter King wrote that he expects Bill Cowher to coach next year. You've got to think John Fox will be gone in Carolina and that that would be a better fit for Cowher. But the point is that the swimsuit competition has begun. It isn't fair to Zorn, but it is, as they say, what it is.

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Cleveland Park, Washington, D.C.: Haynesworth did not look bad. He played awesome when he was actually trying. The thing is, he didn't seem to be actually trying a lot of the time. Did you notice this as well?

Cindy Boren: Oh, I agree that there were moments that were just delightful, but overall I think he was gassed playing against a top-notch offensive line. And, in Tennessee, he had a lot of help on the line and perhaps he isn't getting that because of personnel here or because the group, as Haynesworth has said, just hasn't jelled.

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Mt Rainier, Md.: I realize it must be hard to lug around 350 lbs. -- that's 50 more than the Fridge! -- but Haynesworth didn't seem to have much of a problem doing that for the past few seasons.

What is it with these guys when they put on a Redskins uniform? Do enormous multi-year contracts make you lazy and self-satisfied? I know, it's only one game; but things are not going to be pretty at Fed Ex Field of this sort of thing continues.

Cindy Boren: Again, getting all technical here, that's more than some fridges, even! With a really big contract, you can go to the Cheesecake Factory every night, God knows you drive everywhere ("I believe I'll take the Bentley to the end of the driveway to get the mail. No, wait! The Maserati!") and they actually encourage you to be a big fat guy. Funny thing is, a lot of people were questioning whether Haynesworth would have the same drive after getting his big contract (it's the same story scribes always ask after someone gets a whopper deal; it allows them to say, "told ya.") and they'll trot that out now. I'm not sure it's fair to say that -- yet. But the Redskins' track record with the big stars isn't, um, stellar.

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Gaithersburg, Md.: The Redskins looked just awful in all aspects of the game, but most troubling was that they seemed to be totally unprepared and undisciplined to play at a professional level. I have to wonder what made anyone believe that Jim Zorn is qualified to be an NFL head coach for a team that has such high aspirations?

Cindy Boren: As I said up here a couple of chats ago, in preseason they weren't an efficient group that went out and worked on their rhythm and got off the field. I watched the Giants' starters in a preseason game and saw a stark difference when I watched the Redskins' starters in preseason. It was kind of like everyone was goofing around. Is the problem one of discipline? Is it inadequate scouting? Lack of imagination? Just the fact that they don't have their timing down? There are some tasty cupcakes over the next few weeks; this would be a good time to become a ruthless, efficient team and blow some opponents out rather than squeaking by. Do you think you'll see that?

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Blacksburg, Va.: Nothing says "get your confidence back" like back-to-back games against the Rams and Lions. Won't things look a lot brighter at 2-1 than they are today?

Cindy Boren: How confident are you that the next two are W's? Seriously. It would seem so but I want to know what you guys think.

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Fredericksburg, Va.: Malcom Kelly will probably be taller than anyone who covers him all year. Until we get him more involved in the offense, everyone will continue to double cover Moss.

Jason Campbell completing 73 percent of his passes was encouraging, I'd love to have that every week. I think we'll keep improving and have a great year.

Cindy Boren: There you go. See, it's not all dismal.

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Washington, D.C.: We've been saying "it's only one game" every year since 1998. The Redskins are terrible, have been terrible for more than a decade, and will forever be terrible as long as Dan Snyder runs this team.

Cindy Boren: You and the person above should get together. How's this: for just one more year, let's say it's only one game. Next year, we'll mail order the flamethrower.

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Annandale, Va.: I've watched the Redskins since the 60s. I will not watch another game with Campbell playing quarterback. I admire his arm and his courage and his demeanor but not his mental skills. Manning tore him up in comparison.

I think Todd Collins would have won that game againt the Giants. Campbell's multiple errors and confusion and turnovers gave that game away. He had the receivers - the Skins have the defense. I gave up my season tickets this year and I'm glad. I haven't seen a worse Redskin quarterback since Heath Shuler. Even Billy Kilmer made fewer mistakes.

Cindy Boren: Here we go...Toddball. Perhaps he would have won the game, but unless Superman spins the Earth backward, we'll never know. And maybe he wins one. Or two. But do you really see him doing something he's only done in one season: quarterback a team over a 16-game schedule?

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Sarasota, Fla.: Hey Cindy-No, Jason Campbell is not the second coming of Sonny J. I still don't know if he is a boom or a bust. Maybe it's the number, but I still see a possible Doug Williams out there.

But, regardless, anybody who is screaming to bench him is a moron. He is way down any list of problems with this team.

1 - Our secondary can't cover or tackle.

2 - Our defense can't put consistent pressure on the QB.

3 - Our offense can't run the ball.

4 - Our #1 receiver can't get open.

5 - We don't have anything about this team that is consistently good.

I could go on but,that's enough for now. Thanks

Cindy Boren: Thanks, Sarasota.

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Houston: From your earlier comment, comparing the Giants and the Redskins preseason performances. Do you think the result yesterday may be at least partially do to Zorn not understanding how to get a team ready for the regular season?

Cindy Boren: I suppose it's possible, but I think Zorn is smarter than that. He has to have that knowledge, doesn't he?

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Annandale, Va.: The news out of NY before the game was that the Giants' secondary was weak due to injuries. Yet Zorn opted to do his usual thing, run the first two downs, then attempt to complete the third down with a short pass. It would be nice if he'd call games according to the weaknesses of the opposing defense or to what he sees as the game progresses, rather than stubbornly stick to a formula he has in his head. Why not first-down play-action passes? Why not screens to slow the pass rush? Why not a hurry-up offense?

Cindy Boren: It was not a varied, sophisticated gameplan. But is that because the coach knows his personnel (QB) and what is realistic? It's sort of a chicken-meets-egg debate...and, incidentally, I love those.

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Gaithersburg, Md.: Why did you change the "NFL Gameday" page on Sundays? That was my favorite part of your sports section.

Cindy Boren: To keep you on your toes. We wanted to do something fresh, but I appreciate your comment and we may rethink it. By the way, remember the midweek page we used to do? One of the most unpopular decisions ever was to cut it. We've managed to conserve space elsewhere and it's returning this week.

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Frederick, Md.: Cindy -

I see that a lot of the focus of today's coverage is on the Redskins' offensive problems. And while they are significant (I about lost my mind when Jason Campbell threw the illegal forward pass for an INT), I was much more concerned about the defensive play.

The defense could not get off the field. In my view, it was their inability to force the Giants to punt - the first punt was in the third quarter - that was the major reason the skins ran only four plays in the first quarter.

What did you see that would explain this defensive meltdown? What are the chances of significant improvement on that side of the ball. I'm not prepared to rate the offensive until the supposed strength of the team plays like it.

Cindy Boren: The time of possession was really heavily tilted to the Giants...I think the defense couldn't get off the field because a solid offensive line was helping to move the ball. The defense didn't get the pressure on to create the turnovers or stop the Giants, who were able to come up with what they needed when they needed it.

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Raleigh, N.C.: And they say time travel is impossible.... how could it be impossible when I just watched the Redskins of 2008 live on TV in 2009?

Zorn still looks in over his head Campbell still looks like he will never be a decent NFL quarterback, Portis still looks like he has no where to run, the defense still can't get pressure on the QB or get off the field on third down ...

I'm all for consistency and stuff, but unless a light suddenly clicks on, lack of progress is an understandable reason to fire a coaching staff and find a new QB, no?

Cindy Boren: He shoots, he scores! Good one. Uh, yeah, it was a little flashbacky...but no firings yet. You may be dealing with a 4-1 team in a month.

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Charlotte, N.C.: Why does Portis not ever receive his share of the criticism? I know he's Danny's boy but his yards after contact has to be last in the league. All he has to do is make one guy miss on that first run and he takes it to the house.

Cindy Boren: Good observation.

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Arlington, Va.: The better team won yesterday. Plain and simple. Better players, better coaches. Isn't that a pretty good indictment of the front office? If we could sue them for incompetence the way they sue us over tickets, they'd be tried, convicted, and sentenced in minutes.

Cindy Boren: I'm not prepared to say that until we get to the midpoint of the season.

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Alexandria, Va.: Okay, okay, so we're not as good as the Giants. Who thought we were? Now we get to move on to play some pretty lousy teams and get our hopes up again.

But ... if the Redskins lose to the Rams -- and need I remind you that they did lose to them last year? -- this season will be in free-fall and the fans will hit the panic button.

Isn't this a must-win game for the Redskins? For Zorn and Campbell?

Cindy Boren: They're all must-wins. All you have to do is flashback to a couple of those losses from last year (one of which you mention). The Redskins seem to calculate the effort it will take to win each week and then go out and give exactly that amount...with uneven results.

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Washington, D.C.: Ummm ... why aren't more people speaking to the fact that the Redskins couldn't stop the Giants from converting on third down?

Cindy Boren: Good question and one that I predict Zorn and Blache will be answering this week.

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Fredericksburg, Va.: The Giants did beat New England (Tom Brady) and the highest scoring offense in history not long ago. I think some of you just expect too much for the first game of the season.

Cindy Boren: About 19 months and one Osi Umenyiora injury ago.

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Alexandria, Va.: Jason Campbell has played in 37 games for the Skins. His combined passer rating is about 80. He's thrown 36 TDs and 24 INTs.

I think we know all we'll ever know about Campbell: he doesn't make a lot of mistakes, but also rarely makes a big play. He's not much of a leader -- he's more of a game manager. If he's not pressured, he can make any throw. Under pressure, he panics.

Some people defend Campbell by noting that Cutler (who the Skins wanted badly) threw 4 picks yesterday. True. But we'll see games this year when Cutler throws 4 TDs. We won't see that from Campbell, will we?

It's time to move on. The Redskins (intentionally) don't have a young quarterback on the roster. But let's see what the old gray-haired backup can do.

Cindy Boren: Can't argue with your stats or points. I'm not a big Cutler fan...but, again, no on Toddball.

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Gaithersburg, Md.: The Giants are just a better team they probably have the best offensive line and defensive line in the league, then on top of that you add the fact that even in the Redskins "Glory Days" they couldn't win at the Medowlands.

I don't think this was all that big of a deal yesterday. The Redskins are who we thought they were an 8-8 team that with some breaks could be 9-7 or 10-6 like about half of the other teams in the NFL today.

Cindy Boren: Yep. Every season brings breaks and spells of good and bad luck. Let's see what happens.

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Charlottesville, Va.: Cindy, I'd be fine with all the "win-or-you're fired" pressure on Campbell and Zorn if the guys who are actually responsible for the sorry state of this team (Danny and Vinny) were also on the hot seat. I know we're stuck with the little tyrant, but any chance Vinny is gone if this season goes the way we all think it's going?

Cindy Boren: Depends on who would be hired and whether he'd want to make personnel decisions. Do you really see Shanahan/Cowher/Holmgren/Chucky surrendering that power and the extra dough that'd come with it?

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Bethesda, Md.: Is Osi and the Giants defensive line that good or is Samuels and crew that bad?

Cindy Boren: Osi is that good, imho. Justin Tuck is not to be sneezed at either.

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Tampa, Fla.: Cindy, how old is getting watching Clinton Portis take the ball and fall down for two yards save the very infrequent 20 yard run here and there. Also, why did we draft Brian Orapko to chase around tight ends?

That being said, I thought our offense line played really well in pass protection.

Cindy Boren: The Portis question is a good one; people talk about make-or-break for Zorn and Campbell, but isn't it a key one for him, too, despite his favored status with ownership?

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Cowher/Shanahan/Gruden/Dungy/Holmgren : You don't want Cowher. We had him here forever and we only snagged one Superbowl. Too much Cowher ego, not enough leadership skills.

We'll keep Tomlin, thank you very much.

Cindy Boren: I tend to agreed. I have some Steeler fan friends who worship him, but I'm with you on Tomlin.

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Delray Beach, Fla.: No one has mentioned the pathetic tackling of that Giant tiptoeing down the sidelines heading for a touchdown. Shouldn't at least one in three Redskins know how to knock a guy out of bounds?

Cindy Boren: Perhaps they thought the sideline was an invisible wall. Either that or they enjoy high-wire acts.

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Hampstead, Md.: I put this loss on the coach. Poor execution by players, poor conditioning, missed plays, etc ... look at San Francisco (and we can look elsewhere), a good coach with the right philosophy can make an immediate difference.

I have been watching the Redskins for over 25 years and am so tired of this rebuilding and "gelling" excuse. We have good players, but the wrong person at the helm.

Cindy Boren: Good point. Is is there a philosophy, an identity with this team?

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Alexandria, Va.: People who make the argument that we weren't expected to beat the Giants are right. But that argument ignores the fact that it wasn't even a good fight. Good teams lose to better teams but look good doing it. Bad teams just lose and look bad, too. Which describes the Redskins yesterday?

Cindy Boren: It wasn't a great fight, no.

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Down in Downtown: Not to plug another publication, but the wall street journal had an article where it highlighted Drew Brees. There was a quote where brees said that the quarterback position is 90 percent mental and 10 percent physical. Can we send that article to Jason Campbell? It seems he has it backwards.

Cindy Boren: But was he ever that kind of QB, really? I don't think reading the WSJ story would do it for him.

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Baltimore: Cindy, both QBs that Danny coveted -- Sanchez and Cutler -- had lower QB ratings than Campbell yesterday. And Cutler threw four picks.

Cindy Boren: So...Campbell wins!

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Gastonia, N.C.: Physically, Campbell is in great shape and his arm looks good, but could it be that he just lacks the mental capacity to run any offense? That said, would he just be the starting quarterback to avoid embarrassment for Cerrato? Is it time to re-visit Collins?

Cindy Boren: You comment had a promising beginning...Let's see how JC does against the upcoming cupcakes, then decide.

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Giving up on third down: This is the most frustrating thing. They run so many "give-up" plays. In particular, at the end of the game the Redskins even took a timeout before third down, only to run a pathetic little run. I think Campbell changed the play last minute. What a waste!

Cindy Boren: The use of timeouts is baffling.

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Williamsport, Penn.: I figured the offensive line would give us real trouble this year -- but not until one of the starters went down with an injury. Even fully healthy, they didn't look too good. Campbell is a good quarterback when he has plenty of time to throw -- but he's awful when pressured. He got pressured a lot yesterday.

Is there any reason to believe the OL just faced a much better defense? Or are they just bad?

Cindy Boren: They were playing a really good defensive line. How will they do against the Rams and Lions?

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Hampton, Va.: Why in the world would Cowher, Shanahan, Gruden, Dungy or Holmgren want to come here? Can't they take their pick? Sure, Snyder will pay the most, but he'll also saddle them with Vinny.

This is the deal offered to coaches in Washington: Come for a few years. Make a fortune. Lose. Go home.

If I were to list the coaching jobs I wouldn't take, I'd start with Oakland, then Cincinnati, then Washington. Why wouldn't those big-name guys go somewhere they can win?

Cindy Boren: Winning vs. a great big pile of money...hmmmmm....thinking, thinking....maybe Lombardi was wrong...

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Haynesworth: At points the cameras cut to Haynesworth on the field and off and during one shot in which he was sucking wind hands on hips the commentators said something to the effect, this is the first full game that most of these guys are playing since they don't play a full game in preseason. Huh? don't they have two a days? Isn't preseason when you're supposed to be getting your stamina and strength up? Aren't the players already complaining that there are too many pre-season games? Singletary is looking even better now for pushing the niners in pre-season and not caving to Crabtree.

Cindy Boren: Haynesworth skipped a lot of that action. He isn't a 16-game player, which is no surprise to the team, and they were carefully managing him. Crabtree, it would appear, is making some very poor decisions.

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Confidence? Why?: It's funny -- the Rams and the Lions are probably thinking, "Whew, we get the Skins. There's one we can win!"

There isn't a single game on the schedule the Redskins can afford to take lightly. Every team says that, but they don't mean it. The Redskins lost to the Bengals, Rams, and 49ers last year. They better be terrified of the Rams.

Cindy Boren: See: must-wins above.

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Boren-hell: A blowout? The Redskins? Are you serious? I'd be happy if the Skins win like Denver did yesterday. They'll be lucky to break even over the next five weeks if they play like they did yesterday.

Cindy Boren: After watching for the last few years, I call a blowout a win by 14-17 points. Perhaps "comfortable" is a better word.

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Las Cruces, N.M.: Scribes do seem to always question a player's motivation after a big contract is signed ... but, wasn't Haynesworth's motivation and work ethic always a question througout his career? Certainly was in college!

Cindy Boren: Yep, it was.

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Reston, Va.: Cindy,

Any chance Snyder can pick up some of Eli's tab? He was the best player the Redskins had.

And what's the over/under for the number of minutes after the Redskins beat the no-account Rams that the Bandwagon will start saying that the Redskins have gelled and are headed to the Super Bowl? My guess is one minute.

Cindy Boren: Eli...there's a guy who can make a football fan curl up in the fetal position. (Yeah, I know he has a ring and the $ and a big-shot last name.) I don't give betting odds, but I think the last few years have led even the Bandwagoneers to be more cautious...

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Wilmington, Del.: Haynesworth was "delightful"? You do not spend $100 million for a few good plays. He took a lot of plays off. He checked himself out of the game regularly.

And I don't seem to remember him burying Eli in the backfield.

The bar is set higher for the highest-paid defenisve player in history. He should be a game-changer. He wasn't close.

Cindy Boren: Thanks.

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Memo to Zorn: Cindy,

Could you pass along some info to Zorn? NFL does allow passing on first down and also allows a hurry up offense.

The offense was so predictable my friends and I were actually calling the plays yesterday.

Cindy Boren: Ouch. Unless your name is Bill Cowher. In which case, I apologize.

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Washington, D.C.: What do you think of your 49ers getting a win in Week 1 over the Cardinals? Is it too early to start the Mike Singletary for Coach of the Year campaign?

Cindy Boren: God, I love the Niners...the days as a kid at Kezar...I have no idea what I'm talking about, but Singletary, pioneer of the pantsless pep talk, wins Coach of the Year Game 1. How's that?

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Alexandria, Va.: Hi, Cindy.

I was impressed by all those Giants receivers hauling down those passes, until it struck me, I never heard of any of those guys! Well, not quite that bad, but none of them came anywhere close to making the Pro Bowl. Is this yet another cause for concern?

Sincerely, A Worried Fan.

Cindy Boren: The secondary is a legitimate concern. Yes, I give you permission to worry about this.

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Blacksburg, Va.: If the Redskins had kept Daniel or Brennan, we'd be calling for one of them right now. Smart move by Danny Boy?

Cindy Boren: Well, the Redskins did keep Colt, Cult of...So you're not going to call for Andre Woodson?

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Arlington, Va.: Losing to two team you should blow out in the next two weeks means Danny fires Zorn by the end of September!

My prediction of 4-12 was too optimistic. It will be hard for this team to get to 2-14! And the chants at Christmas and Channukah will be "All I want _____ is a new owner!"

Cindy Boren: Unless they win next week, then you'll be all hopped on Kool-Aid! :)

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Boston: With all the pre season hype concerning Kelly and Thomas, we end up with one five-yard toss to Kelly. I'm as baffled as the rest of the Redskins nation seems to be about play calling.

I will say Antwaan Randle-El was a pleasant surprise in the slot.

Cindy Boren: Am still scratching my head. Agreed.

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Ashburn, Va.: Is Colt out of the picture for the Redskins? Are they looking at next year's quarterback draft?

Cindy Boren: If, by out of the picture, you mean "in the operating room." If I had to guess, I'd say he ends up getting a medical settlement one day, but he healed quickly from the last hip operation, so maybe this time will be the same and he'll get to play more fubball. I would imagine the Skins are examining the QB possibilities that will bloom in April...

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Frederick, Md.: Has anyone else noticed that Randel El seems to get tacked by whatever yard line is next to the one where he catches the ball? In other words - he falls down a lot with no defender touching him

Cindy Boren: Thanks.

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Fairfax, Va.: I didn't hear Brian Orakpo's name called at all yesterday. I find it baffling that the Redskins would pick the best defensive end in the draft only to play him at outside linebacker. If the Redskins wanted an OLB, there were plenty of good ones in the draft: Clay Mathews, Brian Cushing, Ray Malaugua.

Seems like they are trying to fit a square peg in a round hole.

Cindy Boren: A little bit, yes. It was, however, only his first game as a pro...

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Atlanta: Jason completed 73 percent, Eli 69 percent. They both had one touchdown, one interception, two fumbles and one lost.

Is Jason really the main reason we lost yesterday?

Cindy Boren: Main reason? How about "one of the main reasons?"

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Alexandria, Va.: The Redskins did better than expected; we didn't expect them to win this one, and they ended within a touchdown. On the other hand, people are starting to call our quarterback "Jason Stumbles".

Cindy Boren: They are? He needs a catchier moniker.

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Washington DC: I gotta agree: everyone is defending Campbell by saying he had no time to throw. But go back and look at the game. He had plenty of time. Sometimes he panicked (like that moronic third-and-eight checkdown).

Sometimes he just couldn't sense pressure. Sometimes he couldn't find receivers.

But he had time. No one in the NFL gets a clean jersey the whole game.

Cindy Boren: True.

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Washington, D.C.: Cindy, what no Wilbon today? Did he get sick after seeing Cutler's performance last night?

washingtonpost.com: The Chat House With Michael Wilbon: Monday, Sep. 14, 3:15 p.m. (Washington Post)

Cindy Boren: Hahahahahaha...He's up at 3:15. That's Wilbon time, though, so it might be 3:30. And be sure to check out World Wide Wilbon. Ask him for fashion tips and like such as. He's here to advise you, to help you get in touch with your inner Wilbon.

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Oakton, Va.: The Redskins next five games are against teams that are not going to make the playoffs. Should be interesting.

Cindy Boren: They seem like to be golfing in February, yes.

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King George, Penn.: Um, Cindy, the next two games are a lock, right? They're almost two more exhibition games. Then we'll be 2-1 and can take it from there? Right?

I realize the Redskins performed exactly as predicted by the oddsmakers, but the game wasn't anywhere near that close. New York papers are all over the Giants for underperforming. It must be nice to be spoiled that way with your team!

Cindy Boren: Never, ever say the "l" word...It's a huge curse. And, if they stumble over the next two weeks, everyone needs to Google map King George, Pa.

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Norfolk: Isn't that nice? We're in week one and the Redskins are already looking at the quarterbacks in next year's draft.

Let me guess: they're looking at the QBs that will be available for their top 10 draft pick, right?

Cindy Boren: Well, it gets late early up here.

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Atlanta: Campbell does nothing quickly. Is Jeff Garcia still available?

Cindy Boren: You just want to see Mrs. Garcia around town.

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Houston: So, here's the question - Yes, it looks like Groundhog Day all over again, same game, same result as last year. But the Redskins did move the ball slightly better than last year against the Giants, and the Giants didn't dominate the defense as much as they did in the first half of last year's game.

That being said, you could say that yesterday was an improvement over last year, couldn't you?

Cindy Boren: Yes. Let's say that. You'll all have a better week if we do.

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Detroit: Cindy, you're a girl so you don't understand football. Let me explain: the Redskins didn't play well yesterday. They lost because their offense can't move the ball. Their QB has no guts. Their offensive line can't protect him.

In other words, same as last year. It's so simple a cave-girl can understand it!

Cindy Boren: Silly man. They lost because the ball is so pointy...like your head! (Kidding! Kinda!)

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Arlington, Va.: With McNabb hurt, doesn't this changes things in the NFC East?

Cindy Boren: The only thing it changes is that No. 7 may be a starting QB sooner than people expected. Gulp.

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Newark, Del.: I'm trying to describe the game yesterday using only words you're willing to print. I can't do it.

The Redskins were gutless, brainless, stupid, stupid, weak, confused ... it goes on and on. I expected them to lose to the Giants. I didn't expect them to curl up in the fetal position and take a beating.

The Giants are better than the Redskins -- but they didn't play well yesterday! Eli was trying really hard to give the game away. Campbell had time to throw. It was there for the taking. If the Redskins had taken a few shots and lost, well, no big deal. But they just walked in there expecting to lose, so they mailed it in. Embarrassing.

Cindy Boren: Good job.

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Atlanta: Speaking of not trying, how about MeAngelo Hall shying away from contact when he could have potentially wrapped Jacobs up in the backfield and then again when he got burned up the sideline? I know he's not a physical corner, but I didn't know the extent of his softness. Then he has the gall to celebrate after that interception which, if not for great safety play, would have instead been another instance of him being burned.

Cindy Boren: Thanks.

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Washington, D.C.: Honestly, isn't everyone simply bored with the Redskins?

Some problems are so obvious, and solutions to those problems so obvious, consideration of anything else becomes a snooze-fest, an exercise in futility.

How do we get Dan Snyder out of the business of managing the Washington Redskins and turn the operation over to someone who actually knows how to do the job?

Cindy Boren: Perhaps if you come up with $2 billion that would do it. And, if you have $2 billion, will you marry me?

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Alexandria, Va.: Zorn's only been coaching for one year, people! Before that he'd never even been a coordinator. He's got a lot to learn. Sure, maybe he wasn't ready to be a head coach. Sure, maybe Danny panicked when no one else wanted to work for him.

But what do we gain from firing Zorn? Who would really want to replace him??? Everyone thinks Shanahan wants the job. I doubt it. Let's get behind our coach.

Cindy Boren: Every so often, a voice of reason speaks up. Welcome.

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Boston: Belichick is fond of saying you don't really know what you have with a team until 3-4 games into the season to see what you've got, how teams are reacting to what you have and how your team responds? Do you believe this and, if so, aren't Redskins fans going to have to wait another few weeks before making conclusions about this year's team?

Cindy Boren: How do you know Belichick said this? He never talks. Did you secretly tape him? If so, can I listen? Actually, I do think he has a point and that everyone should dial back from 11 to about 5. There are 15 more games to go. And one, merciful, bye week.

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Eli vs. Jason: How'd they compare on third downs? Yeah.. that's what I thought.

Cindy Boren: Um, I wanted that person to feel good...

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Annapolis, Md.: By the way, why can't Portis break an ankle tackle? Also, why does he head for the sidelines instead of upfield?

This is so sad.

Cindy Boren: Want to let you guys have your say here as the clock runs down...

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Bay Area: Last year, I watched a guy named DeAngelo Hall out here in Oakland get toasted regularly. Is the cornerback we paid the big money to the same guy? Because he looked exactly like that guy.

Cindy Boren: He may well be that guy...

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Washington, D.C.: Every time we run Sellers in motion from the I formation, we run the ball. Anyone else notice this? I think we have two run plays: stretch run right, stretch run left.

Cindy Boren: There's a pattern...

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Chicago: Cutler threw four picks -- but his team was still in the game at the end. The Redskins were never in the game. Never.

I'd take Cutler to win now, Sanchez to win in the future, and Campbell to win us a high draft pick.

Cindy Boren: I just don't like Cutler...

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Washington, D.C.: Lets be honest. Jason Campbell is not terrible, but he has literally not improved at all in the past three years. Expecting him to do so at this point is a pipe dream.

Cindy Boren: A lot of folks up here agree...

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Richmond: Everyone thinks the next five weeks is a cakewalk. But we're talking about the Redskins here -- they lost to the Bengals, Rams, and 49ers last year. These next five weeks are against teams at the same level as the Skins. We're one of the bottom-feeders. Redskins fans are living the past thinking we're in the league elite. We're not. We're consistently mediocre.

Cindy Boren: Mediocre, not medium?

On that note, I have to sign off. As usual, this is the coolest place to hang out on Mondays, thanks to your smart questions. See you on the blog and Twitter until next week!

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Editor's Note: washingtonpost.com moderators retain editorial control over Discussions and choose the most relevant questions for guests and hosts; guests and hosts can decline to answer questions. washingtonpost.com is not responsible for any content posted by third parties.


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