SNIDER: Can things get worse for Redskins?

Rick Snider
September 17, 2018 - 11:09 am
Alex_Smith_Sack

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

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What a debacle of a day.

The Redskins were manhandled by the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday. Attendance was the lowest ever for a season-opener at FedEx Field...by a lot.

At least no one was hurt, aside owner Dan Snyder's bank account. Don't worry, the daily interest on Snyder's wealth is more than lost hot dog sales.

It seems Redskins fans are finally no longer suckers to the Redskins marketing machine of hope and mirrors. Only 57,013 were reportedly in the stands, and frankly it looked more like 45,000 max. The upper deck contained only a few lost souls and some leftover fans from a recent soccer game. The lower deck saw one end zone nearly completely empty after the Redskins decided not to use ticket discounters. Better to be empty than take less money. Great strategy.

It was embarrassing and will only worsen, visiting fans notwithstanding. Sunday's game against Green Bay will be filled with cheeseheads. NFC East rivals Dallas, New York and Philadelphia will take over the stands. Carolina, Atlanta and Houston will have their fans, just like Indianapolis brought a few thousand.

If only Washington gave its fans something to cheer about, maybe more would return next time. But those who like the kicking game were watching D.C. United score three times across town. The Redskins also scored on three kicks, but fans who like free pizza toppings by one chain for every Washington touchdown are once more suffering through "Crust Monday."

Alex Smith looked like the checkdown-meister he is, seldom searching beyond five yards to safety. And when Smith took a rare chance beyond the linebackers, the Redskins receivers too often dropped them.

The offensive line that adopted a "business Friday" setting with collared shirts and ties at practice better return to casual Fridays, because they were dominated. It’s a rare sight to see the five regulars healthy, much less dominated, but then Pro Bowlers Brandon Scherff and Trent Williams both left briefly after staying on the ground, and the entire line was just beaten regularly.

And remember the hype of Adrian Peterson’s revival? Uh, check that. Twenty yards on 11 carries for a nifty 1.8 yards per carry that makes even Rob Kelley look explosive. Oh wait, Kelley gained one yard on one carry. Indeed, aside an opening 25-yard gimmicky run by Jamison Crowder on the first possession, the Redskins rushed for 40 yards on 21 carries. The line didn't help much, but that's pathetic production.

Finally, let's remember the Colts are not expected to be a good team this season. Cincinnati beat Indianapolis 34-23 on opening day. Meanwhile, the Redskins' opening win over Arizona was tainted by the Cardinals following with a 34-0 loss to the Los Angeles Rams.

The Redskins are back to the receiving end of shock and awe. At least not too many people saw their shame.

Rick Snider has covered Washington sports since 1978. Follow him on Twitter: @Snide_Remarks​

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