Doesn’t the offseason feel like ages ago for the Washington Football Team? It sure does, and fans are surely hoping they could hit the rewind button right now, because Ron Rivera’s side is trending in the wrong direction.
A familiar theme of the young season reared its ugly head in Sunday’s loss to the Buffalo Bills, who operated as if they were facing a college defense.
We hate to even think it, let alone say it, but it might be time to call a spade a spade. Not only should Washington’s defense be stripped of the “elite” stamp until further notice, but it’s fair to call them a bad group.
Sorry if that opinion offends anybody, but it’s true. Elite defenses go on the road and hold their own against a high-powered offense. Bad defenses go on the road and don’t even give their team a chance to compete.
That’s exactly what Washington’s defense did on Sunday, though the offense was nothing to write home about, either.
Washington’s defense was embarrassing vs Buffalo on Sunday.
Stop falling for the trap, people.
Washington’s defense has given us zero evidence to believe that it’s good. Last year, it was an absolute wrecking ball. This year? It’s allowed an opening drive touchdown in all three games. At one point on Sunday, opponents were 4-of-7 (57%) on third-and-10 or more yards against Jack Del Rio’s unit.
If we’re being honest, the final scoreline, though extremely lopsided, didn’t accurately portray how badly Buffalo outplayed the Football Team. If not for a 73-yard touchdown from Antonio Gibson and Dustin Hopkins recovering his own kickoff deep in Buffalo territory, who knows what the score would’ve been.
Let’s remember, too, that Josh Allen had looked like a shell of his MVP candidate self through the first two games. Entering Week 3, Allen was 47-of-84 (55.9%) for 449 yards, three TDs, one interception and two fumbles (one lost).
Those numbers equate to a lousy 77.4 passer rating. On Sunday, Allen returned to MVP form, finishing 32-of-43 (74.4%) for 358 yards and four touchdowns. He later added a rushing score to rub salt in the wound.
Again, elite defenses don’t let that happen. Elite defenses don’t look entirely helpless against elite offenses. Elite defenses don’t concede17-play, 93-yard scoring drives that take over eight minutes off the clock and put games on ice. Elite defenses don’t get torched on third down (the Bills were 8-for-15 on Sunday) in three straight games. Elite defenses don’t allow 27 points in the first half.
We could continue, but you get the point. Fans and analysts alike had high expectations for Washington’s defense, which seemingly got stronger with the additions that were made in the offseason.
Right now, though, this is an undisciplined group that hemorrhages when faced with adversity and allows 25-30 points per game.
Until further notice, that’s what should be expected.