Redskins vs. Cowboys: Special Teams grades for the Redskins loss to the Dallas Cowboys.
Return Teams: The Redskins kick returns were underwhelming compared to what the Dallas Cowboys produced. Of course fielding punts cleanly is important so Josh Morgan handled that, which is more than likely the reason he was in there over rookie Chris Thompson. There were no egregious errors made in terms of when to and when not to field punts either. However, on four returns Morgan averaged 4.3 yards per return, and the Redskins need to get more yards than that. Return Team grade – C
Coverage teams: The coverage teams had another atrocious outing for the second consecutive week. Against the Oakland Raiders they gave up a blocked punt for a touchdown, and against the Cowboys they had an 86 yard punt return for a touchdown by Dwayne Harris, and also gave up an 90 yard kick return to Harris, which set up another touchdown. On both returns there appeared to be a half-hearted effort and a clear lack of aggression in making tackles. Attributes that are clearly missing now that Lorenzo Alexander is no longer with the team. Coverage team grade – F
Kicker: Kai Forbath returned to the lineup as kicker for the first time since week 1, and he seemed healthy. He made a 33 yard field goal and missed a 49 yard field goal wide left in the fourth quarter that would have gotten the Redskins closer. Forbath has rarely missed from that distance, so it had to be disappointing to the team that he missed. Also, the kickoff that Dwayne Harris returned for 90 yards obviously was short and not close to a touchback. So unless Forbath is still injured, there’s no excuse for not kicking the ball through the end zone. Kicker grade – C
Punter: Sav Rocca Averaged 47 yards a punt against the Cowboys and had a long of 59 yards. The good thing is there were no punts blocked this week, the bad thing is a punt was returned for a touchdown, but clearly a tackle should have been made on the return. Punter grade: C+
Total Special Teams grade: F The two long kick returns were atrocious, and pretty much were the difference in a close game. So this affected the overall grade tremendously. Granted the offense could have played better as well, but you can’t afford to give up one long kick return let alone two. This lost the game for the Redskins. Needles to say special teams coordinator Keith Burns is under fire.