The Redskins were 3-1 and coming off their bye week in mid October when they could have put away the Philadelphia Eagles (then 1-4).
Instead, they throttled the Turnover Machine into overdrive, a trip that hasn’t stopped since. The Redskins are a dreadful minus-15 in turnover ratio, worst in the NFL.
Rex Grossman lost his job for a month with four interceptions before Mike Shanahan turned to John Beck … and did a U-turn a few weeks later.
A look at Rex’s picks against the Eagles:
1. First drive of game, third-and-16 from Eagles’ 38. Formation was 4WR-0RB-1TE (Roy Helu motioned out of backfield). Four-man rush vs. five-man protection. Grossman threw 36 yards to TE Fred Davis on a deep post. Grossman was pressured when Jason Babin and Trevor Laws stunted and Laws rushed free. Release time was 2.44 seconds. (LG Kory Lichtensteiger was lost for the season on the play with a knee injury).
Result: Eagles TD.
2. Third drive, the Redskins trailed 17-0, first-and-10 from own 15-yard line. Formation was 2WR/1RB/2TE. Four-man rush vs. seven-man protection. It was clearly a deep shot opportunity shown by the two-man route and heavy protection. Grossman had Gaffney open on a deep post 35 yards downfield but underthrew him and was intercepted by Nate Allen. Erik Cook was beat to allow hit on Grossman.
Result: Eagles FG.
3. The Redskins trailed 20-6, second-and-12 at the Eagles’ 21-yard line. Formation was 4WR-ORB-1WR. Four-man rush vs. five-man protection. Grossman again looked for Davis on deep post but the tape intimated Davis hesitated on breaking off his route, which allowed Coleman to make his second interception. RT Jammal Brown was beat for the quarterback hit.
Result: Eagles downs.
4. Down 20-6, the Redskins had a third-and-10 from their own 37. Formation was 4WR/1RB/0TE (Davis in WR spot). Four-man rush vs. five-man protection. Grossman was in trouble at 2.10 seconds. Sean Locklear looked inside (even though his help – Helu – was on the left side) and was late to block Darryl Tapp. Will Montgomery (now a guard after starting at center) got away with a hold on Cullen Jenkins. Grossman scrambled and his pass intended for Gaffney was intercepted by Coleman 9 yards downfield.
Result: Eagles punt.
That final turnover earned Grossman a seat on the bench for the next month.
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