The Washington Redskins’ season has faded away. After a promising start that left a lot to be excited about has vanished. Sunday’s loss to the Los Angeles Chargers officially eliminated Washington from playoff contention. The score, 30-13, in L.A. said it all — which was decorated by a pick-six by Bashaud Breeland just before the two-minute warning. The Redskins just were flat and well blah.
Following the loss, Redskins safety and defensive captain D.J. Swearinger sounded off about how lack of preparation leading to such a flat performance.
— NBC Sports Redskins (@NBCSRedskins) December 11, 2017
“It’s blah. Blah. OK, we out here to practice blah,” Swearinger told reporters. “We gotta practice better. I’ve been saying it all year.”
It’s a troubling sign to hear your captain stress that. The Redskins have been ravaged with an ever-growing list of injuries. With the changing faces and a lot of the momentum being zapped away, the Redskins have been completely flat over the last two weeks, especially on Sunday. Swearinger said he was not surprised with the outcome given the lack of preparation and sense of urgency.
“It’s not surprising at all to me. At all. If you don’t prepare well, you’re gonna fail,” Swearinger said. “I don’t think we prepare well with some of the questions that’s being asked like before the game. ‘What’s this right here? What’s this right here?’
“We’re not prepared. It’s all of us, players and coaches. So, we’ve got to be more prepared.”
That entire series of words is even more troubling to hear from a player. While Swearinger pointed the blame on the players as well, the fact he implemented the coaches and in the tone in which he stated the type of questions he hears from presumably coaches, is not a good sign for the embattled head coach Jay Gruden.
Gruden has been credited with changing the culture in the Redskins locker room. After back-to-back winning seasons, all appeared destined for improvement. But, a scandal-filled offseason that included the general manager being fired for essentially struggling with alcoholism and the loss of some key players to free agency, Gruden has not ideally been safe from criticism from fans and Redskins insiders. Now Redskins player(s) can be added to the list.
Swearinger did not name Gruden directly. However, he is the head coach. Everything starts with the head coach. If your defensive captain is complaining about the lack of preparation and hanging his hat on he has been saying it all season, it’s just not a good look for the coach or his staff.
To be fair, Gruden repeated the sentiment during his press conference.
“We weren’t ready to play today. That’s on me. That’s on the staff,” Gruden stated.
Still not a good look, even if he identifies the issues. The Redskins have three games left before the season is over. It’s evaluation time, even with a depleted roster, and that may include the head coach and his staff in the very least in fans and critics eyes.