3-and-out: Jordan Reed facing 'real life' fears with latest concussion scare

Craig Hoffman
August 23, 2019 - 2:32 am

ATLANTA — The Redskins' worst nightmare came true Thursday night. Jordan Reed came away from Atlanta concussed after taking a cheap shot from Falcons safety Keanu Neal. However there was plenty to like in a 19-7 win.

1) Reed looked like himself, playing most of the first half. He actually had a drop, which is like seeing Big Foot, before coming back for a huge third-down conversion on the next series. On that play, Neal flew in helmet-first at Reed and connected. He should have been ejected. It was dirty. It was ridiculous. It is infuriating.

Reed has a history of concussions, and while not all concussion research is conclusive, we know enough to know that multiple concussions are what is most dangerous. Reed's been concussion-free since 2016, but this is at least his sixth of his professional career and he might have had more at Florida and earlier.

This is scary. Not football scary; real life scary. He has two young daughters and cares nothing more than being around them and being a good dad. There are also football implications, as Reed's presence is the difference in the Redskins offense having real upside and not. 

Hopefully this is minor, he's healed completely between now and Week 1 and there are no lingering effects or long-term symptoms. He is in concussion protocol. Jay Gruden seemed optimistic, but we'll see.

The Redskins and Reed did nothing wrong here. Neal did. He should have been tossed and the league should have to answer for why he wasn't. This is the hit they want out of the game and they should. It's disgusting and has no place, even in this violent game.

2) The Redskins offense did show flashes, though. Derrius Guice got his first carries since tearing his ACL last preseason and reminded everybody why there was so much excitement. He showed speed, power and vision, to the tune of a 44-yard half on 11 carries. He said he felt great and is ready to go for Week 1.

The passing game had some nice moments, but was sabotaged by poor protection all night. Ereck Flowers was at the center of the starters' mishaps and also cost Guice a touchdown with a hold at the goal line.

The good news is the starting defense looked really good, especially Landon Collins. The free agent acquisition was all over the field with four tackles (three solo) and a pass breakup that could – and maybe should – have been an interception. Collins said post-game he's never played with a safety like Montae Nicholson. The third-year starter's speed and athleticism frees Collins to play off instinct and the two have developed a rapport that should help lead the Redskins to a solid unit on that side of the ball.

3) Special teams actually turned into the story of the game after the Falcons faked a punt on their first drive. The Falcons are coached by Ben Kotwica, who left Washington after last season.

In a karmic act by the football gods, the Falcons proceeded to fumble two punts later in the game. The Redskins converted both into points. Of significance on those plays is that Robert Davis was the gunner applying pressure. He recovered one of the fumbles and generally was free all night screaming down the field. 

This is how he makes the team. Yes, he's got potential as a receiver, but the argument to keep a sixth or even seventh receiver becomes a lot easier when that player has special teams value. Davis continued his stellar preseason with his work as a gunner, even on a night where he didn't do much of anything as a receiver.


Stat of the night: 11 carries for Derrius Guice. That's more than I thought he'd get by nearly triple and a great sign for his health moving forward.

Quote of the night: "Just having something that you love taken away," Guice said when asked about what he'd learned over the past year. "We tend to take things for granted. When football was taken away from me, I was in a place where I felt like I was lost."

"My brothers were out there going to war and I wasn't with 'em. After putting in all the work in training camp with them, it was kinda like a slap in the face that it happened in the first game, but it humbled me. I feel like it was a sign from God telling me to slow down, watch my body, read my body and take care of my body."

"Everything is a lesson. You learn lessons from everything that happens to you – good or bad. There's always a what if. 'What if I didn't get hurt? What would have happened?' Obviously I went through what happened because I got hurt. But like I said, we always take things for granted, but it definitely matured me and slowed me down."

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