COMMENTARY | The Washington Redskins defeated the Chicago Bears at home on Sunday afternoon in a very bipolar 45-41 win. In the first half, the defense kept them in contention. In the second half, the offense had to get the job done. Here are five more takeaways from Sunday's win.
1: Jordan Reed is That Guy
I've raved about Jordan Reed all season long and have even gone as far as to say he is the reason why Fred Davis will lose his job. Sunday, Reed proved that he is going to be a prolific pass threat for the Redskins for years to come.
For quarterback Robert Griffin III, Reed was his favorite target. He targeted him a team-high nine times and even completed his first four passes to the rookie. On the day, Reed had nine receptions for 134 yards and one touchdown. He showed off his size, strength and athleticism and look for him to be a favorite target of Robert Griffin III from here on out.
2: Brandon Meriweather is Not That Guy
If there was ever a player that was frustrating to watch and made you want to pull your hair out, it's safety Brandon Meriweather. In the second half, Meriweather was called for two 15-yard personal foul penalties for hits to the head. This isn't a new thing for Meriweather, as he has done this a time or two already this season.
It should be interesting to see how the NFL handles this situation. We could likely see a fine handed down and they may even consider suspending Meriweather. If that's the case, the Redskins would be down a lot of experience in the defensive backfield when they go up against Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos next weekend.
3: Robert Griffin III Has His Legs Back
Throughout the past couple weeks, Griffin has been building up to a performance like what we saw today. Through the air, he had 298 yards with two touchdowns and one interception, but made his biggest impact on the ground with 84 yards on 11 carries.
His ability to run the football effectively opened up a whole new level to the offense. In the first four games prior to the bye-week, the read option wasn't effective and defenses didn't have to worry about RG3. Sunday, the read option was as effective as ever and it even opened up the passing game. With the exception of his one interception, Griffin looked much better throwing than he did last week against the Dallas Cowboys.
4: What Happened to the Defense?
If football was limited to two halves, then the defense would have turned in one of their best performances ever. Unfortunately for the Redskins' defense, there are two halves to a football game and the second one was pretty poor defensively.
In the first half, it was the defense that picked up the offense. Brian Orakpo scored his first-career pick-six and the defense held the Bears to just 46 yards. After halftime, it was a completely different unit. They gave up 313 total yards in the second half, including 24 points. The first half was very good, but the second half was not. They'll need to find consistency, but at least we saw some sort of solid defense.
5: Strong 1-2 Punch At Running Back
While Roy Helu Jr. scored a career-high three touchdowns including the go-ahead score with 46-seconds left, don't ignore the strong effort by Alfred Morris. Morris powered his way to 95 yards on 19 carries behind an offensive line that had a spotty performance. The Bears were playing the stretch-read running plays well, yet Morris was still able to consistently pick up an average of five yards per carry.
When Morris needed a breather, the Redskins were able to insert Roy Helu Jr. into the game and the level of play from the offense didn't drop off. The ability to change out running backs and keep their legs fresh will go a long way in keeping the offense productive and relentless.
The Redskins picked up a very important big-picture victory over the Bears. Next week, they head to Denver to take on the Broncos and entering that game with a 1-5 record, with the likely possibility of going 1-6, would have all but ended their season. Now, they still have some postseason hope left in them, albeit a small amount.
Brian Skinnell is a contributor for RantSports.com and Yahoo Sports. You can follow him on Twitter, @Brian_Skinnell.
- Sports & Recreation
- American Football
- Washington Redskins
- Jordan Reed
- Brandon Meriweather
- Chicago Bears
- Robert Griffin III