Reporting Grant Paulsen
How will the Redskins handle prosperity?
Just when you think the Redskins are about to send a league-wide message, they regress to the mean. That’s been the way things have gone in Washington for the last several seasons – maybe even since 1993 for the most part. How does Washington react to being on the verge of its first 3-0 start in six years? How will the Redskins do on the national primetime stage they’ve struggled so mightily on over the last several years? (Eagles game in 2010, anybody).
Can the Redskins take their act on the road?
Washington has been penalized just six times through two games, one of the lowest totals in the NFL. That is much easier to accomplish at home than on the road. Now that you are in a hostile environment, indoors, with a crowd cheering when your offense is on the field, can you alleviate false starts? Can you avoid illegal motion flags? Can you get snaps off without delay-of-game setbacks? Those questions will be answered tonight. The Cowboys’ offense has drawn 10 more flags than the Redskins, but this is Dallas’ first home game. They should get some home-cooking in their season-opener.
How do you slow down DeMarcus Ware?
Ware torments every team he plays, but he’s been especially dynamic against the Redskins over the years. He’s feasted on Washington’s tackles, recording 71 stops, 16 pressures and nine sacks in 12 career games against the Redskins. He’ll have to be slowed down if the Redskins are going to avoid drive-altering sacks and series-ending negative plays. Ware had three sacks in two games against Washington last season. Trent Williams has to be better tonight than he was in 2010. He said this week that his extensive film study didn’t help him to find a flaw in Ware’s game. That’s not good news. Expect tight ends to help Williams chip at Ware. Running the ball right at the seventh-year linebacker will keep him honest.
Can Washington get to Tony Romo?
Romo struggles against NFC East opponents. He’s got a .500 record in starts within his division (12-12) compared to a 31-16 record against the rest of the NFC. The best way to fluster Romo is to hit him early, especially on a night when he won’t be 100 percent (based on the rib and lung injuries he suffered last week). Here’s an amazing stat on Romo: When he is sacked once or less he is 25-8 as a starter. When he’s sacked two-or-more times he’s 15-15. If you can get to him, you can beat him.