[caption id="attachment_1485" align="aligncenter" width="249" caption="Jason Campbell"][/caption]
So far, so good.
The Washington Redskins' starting offense has gone from totally unproductive against the Ravens to showing signs of competence vs. the Steelers to resembling an actual NFL offense last night with the Patriots in town. Progress is what you're looking for and that's what we've seen.
Jason Campbell demonstrated that he can be decisive and make accurate throws. He also displayed his underrated running skills when he faked out a Patriots defensive back with a pump and scooted four yards for a touchdown.
But, then again, we already knew that Campbell can do all of that. If he's going to take the next step and become a solid starter he needs to do all of that consistently. His failure to do so in his 36 games as an NFL starter is why he has yet to earn the full confidence of the organization and it's why he's still working on his rookie contract instead of having been granted an extension.
Campbell's inconsistency is why he is such a polarizing figure among Redskins fans. The fans who believe that Campbell can lead the Redskins to the playoffs have plenty of plays and games that indicate that Campbell is capable of being a very good, if not great, NFL quarterback. The dump-Campbell crowd has its share of indisputable visual evidence that he'll never be anything better than mediocre.
Don't get me wrong—he deserves kudos for bouncing back after a couple of brief, uninspiring outings. But he can't continue to be the Comeback Kid. At some point he has to get it done play after play, game after game, month after month.
All of this means that we'll just have to do what many of us hate to do—wait and see. We can't microwave an answer here; we'll have to see how it plays out over the coming weeks.
Some are concerned about the way that the defensive secondary got carved up in the first half. To be sure, they didn't look good, especially DeAngelo Hall, but last night's performance was fairly low on the worry meter. Tom Brady and Randy Moss will do that to a lot of teams and they are not on the regular-season schedule. Actually, I was much more concerned last week when Charlie Batch was consistently converting third and long situations.
The defense as a whole has yet to show signs of becoming the takeaway-generating wrecking ball that many think it will be. Once again, that long-lost commodity, patience, is called for here.