Washington Redskins Predictions

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The Washington Redskins were picked to finish last in the NFC East in 2012 by almost every major publication. They were coming off a 5-11 season the previous season and hadn’t been to the playoffs in five years. After a 3-6 start to the year, it appeared they were headed for the NFC East basement once again. That’s when rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III and company said enough is enough.

The Redskins would miraculously go 7-0 to finish the season. They beat the Dallas Cowboys at home 28-18 with the division title on the line in Week 17. They would win the NFC East for the first time since 1999. Griffin III went on to capture the Offensive Rookie of the Year award, proving that he was worthy of the Redskins moving up in the draft to select him No. 2 overall. He would suffer ACL and LCL tears in his knee in a 14-24 loss to Seattle in the Wild Card Round, essentially ending Washington’s season.

Griffin III finished last season with 3,200 passing yards, 20 touchdowns and 5 interceptions, while also rushing for 815 yards and 7 scores. While Griffin III got all the credit for the turnaround, fellow rookie Alfred Morris deserves a big portion of it. Morris rushed for 1,613 yards and 13 touchdowns in 2012. These two helped Washington finish fifth in the league in total offense (383.2 yards/game), including first in rushing (169.3).

If the Redskins are going to show staying power in the NFC East, they must get better on the other side of the ball. They ranked a woeful 28th in total defense (377.7 yards/game) last year, including 30th against the pass (281.9). However, they did force some key turnovers, ranking third in the league in interceptions (21). That helped Washington finish third in turnover differential (+17).

Last Season
NFC East
ATS Record
Home ATS
Road ATS
Offense Rank
Defense Rank
Turnover Margin
Points For
Points Against
2013 Roster Changes
Draft Picks
David Amerson (CB), Jordan Reed (TE), Phillip Thomas (S), Chris Thompson (RB), Brandon Jenkins (DE/OLB)
Devery Henderson (WR), Donte’ Stallworth (WR), Jeremy Trueblood (OT), Darryl Tapp (DE), E.J. Biggers (CB)
Jammal Brown (OT), Lorenzo Alexander (DE/OLB), Cedric Griffin (CB), D.J. Johnson (CB), Madieu Williams (S)
2013 Washington Redskins Schedule
Date Opponent
Spread (Est.)
Win Chance
9/9 Eagles
9/15 @ Packers
9/22 Lions
9/29 @ Raiders
Week 5 BYE
10/13 @ Cowboys
10/20 Bears
10/27 @ Broncos
11/3 Chargers
11/7 @ Vikings
11/17 @ Eagles
11/25 49ers
12/1 Giants
12/8 Chiefs
12/15 @ Falcons
12/22 Cowboys
12/29 @ Giants
Estimated Wins: 8.15

The one thing that you can certainly say about Redskin fans is that they are loyal to their team. They continue to produce sellout after sellout despite all of the struggles over the past decade. However, that support has led to only a 12-21 record as hosts over the past four years. They were 5-4 at home last year, compared to 5-3 on the road.

Washington will be up against the 15th-easiest schedule in 2013. Its opponents went 127-128-1 (49.8%) last season. Outside of its six division games in 2013, it will square off against the NFC North and the AFC West. It will also take on the Atlanta Falcons and San Francisco 49ers, who each won their respective divisions a year ago.

Due to winning the division last season, the Redskins will have a more difficult schedule than the rest of the NFC East teams. They will be up against five playoff teams from last year, including four of the best squads in the league in Green Bay, Denver, Atlanta and San Francisco.

The home schedule will be very easy to say the least. Only one playoff team (49ers) will visit Washington in 2013. The Redskins will be a favorite in their other seven home games. The road schedule gets much more difficult as four playoff teams from last year appear on it. They have to travel to face the Packers, Broncos, Vikings and Falcons.

Odds (Courtesy of Bovada)
Regular Season Win Total
to Win the NFC
to Win Super Bowl XLVIII
18 to 1
33 to 1

It’s pretty impressive what Washington was able to do last season in winning its first division title since 1999. It couldn’t have scripted a much better finish, going 7-0 over its final games and needing each and every victory to get to the playoffs. This team really learned a lot about itself and what it is capable of going forward.

Due to winning the division and getting to the postseason, the Redskins really didn’t believe they needed to do much this offseason. They made very few moves on both sides of the ball compared to most teams, deciding to essentially stand pat. It’s hard to blame them after last year’s remarkable run.

Griffin III expects to make it back in time for the season opener after tearing his ACL and LCL in that playoff loss to the Seahawks. This team goes as he goes, though they did manage to play well when backup Kirk Cousins was forced into action during the regular season. Cousins completed 69 percent of his passes during the regular year, but he looked like a scared puppy against Seattle.

The Redskins could stand to improve at right tackle, where Tyler Polumbus yielded eight sacks in 2012. They did sign Jeremy Trueblood and Tony Pashos as free agents, but neither is really an upgrade. The rest of the offensive line is pretty solid. Left tackle Trent Williams only committed eight penalties while allowing a mere two sacks a year ago. LG Kory Lichtensteiger, RG Chris Chester and C Will Montgomery can more than handle their own.

More help was needed at receiver considering there really isn’t a whole lot of talent here. When Pierre Garcon was healthy, he and Griffin III formed a dangerous combination in the passing game. Garcon remains bothered by a torn ligament in his foot and may not be able to be counted upon to stay on the field. Josh Morgan and Leonard Handerson are both average wide receivers, while Santana Moss in another year older. That’s probably why Washington added some depth here by signing Devery Henderson and Donte’ Stallworth in the offseason.

It’s amazing that the Redskins were able to win the NFC East given how poorly their defense played in 2012. However, a lot of that had to do with injuries, so big props has to go out to defensive coordinator Jim Haslett for keeping this unit together. In fact, Washington allowed 20 or less points to four of its final seven opponents during the regular season.

Week 2 brought the biggest blows as both Brian Orakpo and Adam Carriker were lost for the season due to injury. That left Ryan Kerrigan as the only consistent pass rusher along the front seven. Kerrigan finished the season with 8.5 sacks, and no other Redskin was able to register more than 4.5. For the season, the team managed just 32 sacks. Orakpo is one of the top pass rushers in the league, while Carriker had five sacks in 2011, which is a nice number for a 3-4 defensive end.

With Orakpo and Carriker now healthy, this should be a much improved pass rush in 2013. Their return will help ease the load on the secondary, which did not play well at all last year. That’s why Washington used two early draft picks on defensive backs. First, they nabbed NC State’s David Amerson at cornerback. He’ll get to learn behind veterans DeAngelo Hall and Josh Wilson. While Wilson played well last year, Hall was consistently torched for big plays, which more than made up for his four interceptions. Safety Philip Thomas was drafted early as well, and he could see significant playing time due to the injury history of Brandon Meriweather, who played just one game last year.

There is a lot to like about this Washington team heading into 2013. It should have a good chance to defend its division title given the talent coming back on both sides of the ball. Of course, it all depends on whether or not key players can stay healthy. There’s Griffin III and Garcon offensively who will have a hard time staying on the field. Then there’s several players on defense with injury histories. As long as Orakpo and Carriker can play a full season, this is going to be one of the most improved stop units in the league in 2013. That being said, being dealt the toughest schedule in the NFC East will have the Redskins settling for second place in the division with a 9-7 record.

NFC East Finish
Division Record
Overall Record
Win Total Prediction
Over 8.5
Redskins Resources
More Redskins Predictions

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About the Author: Jack Jones has been one of the top experts on the site while competing against roughly 80 of the best handicappers in the world each year. He has made most of his money on the hardwood. In fact, he has finished in the Top-5 in college basketball each of the last three seasons (#5 2011-12, #5 2012-13, #3 2013-14). He was also the No. 1 NBA handicapper from 2012-13. As of early April, Jack has compiled an 802-631 basketball run that has seen his $1,000 game players profit $124,030. He was the No. 3 College Football handicapper in 2012-13. While he doesn't have any top finishes in the NFL, he has produced steady profits without killing his clients. Jack also was your No. 7 MLB handicapper in 2009 and backed it up with a No. 8 MLB finish in 2010. No matter the sport, the one thing you can count on with Jack Jones is that he won't leave any stone unturned. You'll know why he is on a game with his detailed analysis, and more times than not, you will come out well ahead against your book. Head on over to Jack's premium pick page to see what he has in store for tonight!
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