By Kevin Ross

Exiting the bye week at 3-6, the Washington Redskins find themselves in a position to essentially control their own destination. Yes, they must win multiple games, but this is what the National Football League is about–fighting until there’s nothing left to fight for, and then letting the chips fall where they may. 

And for now, the chips must land on a curly “W” this Sunday, as another loss will cause irreconcilable damage. Make no mistake about it–the Redskins are thrilled that their opponent will be a team that has been equally as abysmal as they have been.

The Philadelphia Eagles are coming to town with injuries that run deeper than the football field as their usually composed organization is in turmoil. Mike Vick is concussed and Andy Reid might curse out the next person who asks him about his job stability. The Eagles are a franchise suffering to deal with the notion that this season’s Super Bowl aspirations are probably just that — aspirations. If the Washington Redskins want any shot at turning this into a miracle season, they must find a way to bring Philadelphia even more misery and take this win from the Eagles. 

And the road to victory for Washington will once again depend on Jim Haslett and the defense. Look for Jim Haslett to be aggressive with his blitz calls as the team will attempt to rattle rookie quarterback Nick Foles.

Foles is no stranger to the Redskins coaching staff, as they had the opportunity to coach him during last season’s Senior Bowl. Coach Haslett took time to speak about the skill set that the rookie signal caller brings to the NFL,

nick foles With A Win, The Redskins Control Their Own Destiny

(Credit, Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

“Just knowing Nick Foles and watching him on tape, you’ve got to treat this guy like he’s played in the league. He’s got composure. Nothing really bothers him,” said Haslett. “Like I said, he can make all the throws. When you look at it and go back and look at all the games he’s played, all the snaps, he does a nice job. He throws the screens well. He throws the outs, deep balls, the comebacks, the hitches, the over-the-middle, the red zone routes. He can make all the throws. Now he might not be able to throw it 80 yards like the other guy but he can get it down the field. That’s good enough. He can throw it.”  

Judging from Coach Haslett’s borderline admiration for Nick Foles, the Washington Redskins appear to not be taking this rookie lightly, which would be a change of pace from their usual behavior. The Washington Redskins have lost a whopping eight straight games against rookie quarterbacks, and Foles may not have to do much to make it nine straight losses.

Foles simply needs to get the ball into the hands of his playmakers and let the athletes on the Eagles’ offense do the rest. Therein lies the problem for Washington, as their personnel on defense matches up poorly with the speed of the Eagles playmakers.

“They’ve got some pretty good football players,” said Haslett. “They have a lot of speed. The running back’s a heck of a football player, and the two wideouts. Even with [wide receiver] Jason Avant being hurt, that helps out. They’ve got a bunch of guys. The tight end’s a good player. We’ve got to do different things against them because they do such a good job. They’re going to run a bunch of different things at us and we need to be able to withstand the onslaught early.”

Withstanding the onslaught early will only be half of the battle, as the war is won in the fourth quarter.  Will Washington rise to the occasion and potentially revive their season? Or will the Redskins be the same old Redskins? We’ll find out Sunday at 1 p.m. 

For more Local Football Bloggers and the latest Redskins news, see CBS Sports DC.

Kevin Ross is a freelance writer covering all things Washington Redskins. His work can be found on

Kevin Ross is a freelance writer covering all things Washington Redskins. His work can be found on


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