WASHINGTON — The Redskins don’t get a whole lot of respect for making the postseason last year.
In a way, it’s all justified. Of the nine games they won, eight came against teams with losing records, and the other came against the 8-8 Buffalo Bills. They made the playoffs, but they did so by winning the NFC East, the only division to feature three teams with losing records. In the four total games, including the postseason loss to the Green Bay Packers, that Washington played against playoff teams, the Redskins were outscored 140-64.
Kirk Cousins had a dominant second half of the season, but most of that success came against teams that did not make the postseason, including four of the final nine games against division opponents.
So when ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith asked Redskins defensive back DeAngelo Hall, “how fraudulent y’all might be,” it was a justified — albeit rudely phrased — question.
Hall took it in stride.
“Absolutely we were lucky last year,” Hall said. “We were the product of a bad division. I’ve never been one to hide that fact. We were in the playoffs because we were in a terrible division, without a doubt. But I don’t think anyone even picked us to win four games last year. And we kinda knew that we had to capitalize on the opportunities that were in front of us, and that was playing bad teams. And so this year, having reached the playoffs, I just think it put a little bit more of a hunger in all of these guys’ bellies. We feel like if we go out there and compete, game in and game out, play in play out, we can win games in this league.”
In the visit with the First Take crew, Hall also discusses his role as a safety compared to what it was as a cornerback, and why he’s not scared of Pro Bowl tight end Rob Gronkowski.