Here is what you need to know on this Tuesday, September 25, five days before the Redskins take on the Bucs in Tampa Bay.
The last straw?
The Redskins got a good taste of the replacement referees bungling their way through the end of their game against the Bengals on Sunday. They marked off a 20-yard penalty after the Redskins, perhaps a bit too stridently, correctly argued that the game should not have been over with a 10-second clock runoff following a false start. The penalty made the Redskins’ attempt at a Hail Mary much more difficult but it would be unrealistic to say that the fiasco cost them the game.
But you can’t say the same about the botched call at the end of the Monday night game. By now I’m sure you’re seen the interception that was called a touchdown and you’ve heard the nuances on the rules of simultaneous possession so I’m not going to rehash all of that here.
This was not just a bad call, the optics were horrible. You have two striped shirts in the end zone near the pile. Without conferring, as competent officials in any sport should, one calls a touchdown, the other signals timeout, meaning that there was a turnover and touchback. The head referee did not come to the end zone to take charge and help them sort it out. For some reason, the touchdown call was the one that prevailed and, for some reason, was upheld on replay.
Insert the travesty, sham, mockery bit here.
There is some talk that this should be the play that forces the NFL and the referees’ union to come to an agreement that would end the lockout. Unfortunately, the play is likely to have the opposite effect.
The mess in Seattle will embolden the refs to dig in, figuring that the NFL can’t continue to ignore the public relations nightmare that the replacement officials have become. But the NFL is very unlikely to cave to the referees’ demands under any circumstances, thinking that the officials who are missing their $150,000 per year part-time jobs will come around eventually.
So instead of common sense prevailing and a dark moment for the sport, a game being decided on a call that was clearly wrong, spurring the two sides in the dispute to get a deal done it is perhaps more likely that it makes both sides dig their heels in further.
Williams day to day
Unlike the previous Monday, the Redskins got relatively good news on the injury front yesterday when an MRI revealed no structural damage to Trent Williams’ right knee. But the news that he suffered a bone bruise does not mean that he is certain to play against the Bucs on Sunday. This situation has all the makings of a game time decision. They may have to get by with Jordan Black at tackle.
Black got off to a rough start but, like the rest of the offense, he found his stride in the second half. But now that there is film out on him and the Bucs may be able to game plan for him, Black will get tested on Sunday.
Off day, no availability
In case you missed it
RG3 says he won’t be intimidated by hard hits.
The Redskins’ ground game is rolling.
Days until: Redskins @ Bucs 5; RG3 vs. Matt Ryan @ FedEx Field 12; first division game @ Giants 26; Thanksgiving @ Cowboys 58; Super Bowl XLVII 131