‘Twas the day before Christmas and all through FedEx, not a person was interested, not even the refs.
Washington delivered their second empty-calorie win in a row last Sunday, beating the hapless Broncos by 16 and “improving” to 7-8. The “easy” part of the December schedule has rounded into shape, just in time to mean not a whole lot. Alas. Who and what contributed to this particular win, exactly? I'm glad you asked! Welcome to the fifteenth of sixteen #SundaySlices recaps, where we cut up the game to assign fame and blame, based on the outcome, into delicious pie chart form. Try not to make a mess.
(These are the players/coaches/etc. who are not in the pie, because they did not contribute to the win)
-Josh Doctson. Good news: he received a career-high 13 targets. Bad news: he only caught two of them. Whether it was Kirk’s erratic first half accuracy or Doctson’s gloves, something was amiss.
-Josh Norman. #24 has as many picks this year as I do. If only our contracts matched...
-Special Teams. I copy/pasted this from every other “Missing Ingredients” list after a win column.
Zach (Christmas) Vigil: 5%
The other Zach attacked. Leading the team with 12 solo tackles, Vigil showed that inside linebackers in Greg Manusky’s scheme eat well in the stat department.
Preston Smith: 10%
Smith has awoken from his midseason hibernation and begun to ravage, starting his likely “contract year” ascension early.
Ryan Kerrigan: 10%
Kerrigan is oft-maligned for not showing up in “big” games and situations, but that hasn’t slowed him from collecting a helluva lot of sacks in his career. Whatever his perceived lack of clutchiness may be, the numbers don’t lie.
Kendall Fuller: 10%
Once again the highest-graded player by Pro Football Focus, the second-year CB has solidified himself as the best defensive back on the team in 2017.
The Denver Broncos: 15%
The Skins would have Philly’s record if they got to play Brock Osweiler and the Broncos every week. This was the worst opponent the Skins have had all season (maybe the Giants are crappier) and it was nice to see them handle business, I guess. But, with the continuing lack of a run game and allergy to converting on third downs, tough to get too excited about a glorified exhibition game.
Kirk Cousins and Jay Gruden: 50%
Was this their last home game together as player-coach? It’s very possible one or both of these men could be moving after another disappointing season. Whose “fault” is it that the marriage didn’t work? Unclear. But one thing I know for sure is that you will read a million think pieces hypothesizing why. And when you do, make sure you click on Fifty Gut to tell you the information you probably already know, but need to read in a way that makes you laugh...or makes you hate us. Either way, entertained!
#SundaySlices will return following Sunday's season finale against the pitiful New York Giants. If you have any slice suggestions, send them to @slimceeVA on Twitter.