After a hectic four months since the season ended, the NFL starts a new year, complemented by free agency and the draft. The roster that Washington had to begin that season looks much different today. With this new exciting batch of players and personnel, the team has much to look forward to in the upcoming season. Here is my 2019 Redskins season prediction.
Week 1 @ Philadelphia:
Washington opens up the season on the road for the second consecutive year. It’s never easy to win a divisional road game, and especially not in week one. However, there’s reason to look at this game positively. The fact that this isn’t a Monday night game, which the Redskins’ last two trips to Lincoln Financial Field have been, is reason for hope. But I’m going to be honest; Washington has no business going to Philadelphia and winning week one, no matter who’s starting under center.
Week 2 vs Dallas:
In week two, Washington hosts the Cowboys in their season opener. This should be a win for the Redskins because they are the more complete team. Unless the offense blows its expectations out of the water, I expect this game to look similar to Washington’s win over Dallas; a hard-nosed defensive battle.
Week 3 vs Chicago (MNF):
Uh oh. Night games have not been friendly to the Skins over the past two decades. This game is going to start out pretty ugly. I wouldn’t be surprised if Washington was on the wrong side of a 17-3 score heading into halftime. Although I haven’t stated it already, I envision Keenum being the day-one starter, and fearing a 1-2 start to the season, I predict this is the game that Haskins gets plugged in. Haskins leads the team to a victory and Washington steals a win from a better team. Unlock the fridges.
Week 4 @ New York Giants:
The Redskins travel to the Meadowlands in week four to take on what should be an 0-3 Giants team. Haskins gets his first crack at proving New York wrong when the team chose to select Daniel Jones over him in the draft five months prior. Haskins does more than prove his point, lighting up the G-Men’s secondary. Young Simba throws three touchdowns on the day, while Daniel Jones serves Eli three cups of Gatorade. Washington defeats Giants in a rout, sparking massive excitement from the fanbase and media.
Week 5 vs New England:
I have already confirmed that I will be attending this game at FedEx field. It’s really important to me to watch the greatest player of all-time play live at least one before he retires; even if he’s on the other team. New England typically starts out the season shaky, but a Redskins win here isn’t that realistic. The Patriots are, and will continue to be, a dynasty until Brady and/or Belichick depart. This game will result in a loss for Washington, but I wouldn’t get too worried.
Week 6 @ Miami:
At first glace, this appears to be one of those weird games where either team can realistically win, making it difficult to predict. With that said, the edge goes to the road team. It’s going to be a little depressing to see Washington lose a very winnable game, but that’s just how it goes sometimes. The loss drops the Redskins to .500 at 3-3.
Week 7 vs San Francisco:
Washington has a much more talented team than the 49ers, and following a frustrating road loss to the Dolphins, the team puts on a clinic. Dwayne Haskins has a quiet day, throwing for 200 yards and no touchdowns. Washington wins this game recycling its winning formula from last season; pairing smash-mouth defense with an effective running game. Derrius Guice and Adrian Peterson combine for three touchdowns on the day, in addition to 250 rushing yards.
Week 8 @ Minnesota:
Game of the year. Flat out. The Redskins travel to Minnesota to take on the Kirk Cousins led Vikings. This will be a win for Washington. The team could go 1-15, but they will not lose this game. Many players from the Cousins tenure in Washington are still here, and they will be motivated as ever to embarrass him on national television. The offense is slowed down by Minny’s talented defense, but the Skins still prevail. Kirk Cousins throws three picks, two of which are returned for six, while Adrian Peterson and Case Keenum get to wave goodbye to their former fans.
Week 9 @ Buffalo:
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The luxury of playing indoors against Minnesota is not going to be afforded here. Washington struggles to beat Buffalo in the gut-wrenching cold. Buffalo wins this game after its draft class reveals its impact. Ed Oliver hits home twice on Haskins while a running game led by Cody Ford bullies the Redskins’ d-line.
Week 10 Bye:
Washington is gifted a more than favorable bye week by the NFL schedule makers. Week ten is probably the best time to have a break in the season to recover and regroup.
Week 11 vs New York Jets:
The Jets have swiftly passed by the Giants as the best team in New York over the past two seasons. With a stout, young defense, in addition to Darnold and Bell on offense, this team can put up a fight. I still think Washington will secure a home win coming off of a bye. Washington is the better team and they will come out of this contest with a win.
Week 12 vs Detroit:
The Redskins are 6-4 coming into this game. The same record the team had entering Week 12 last season, the Thanksgiving day blowout loss to Dallas. This game, however, will be a turning point in the other direction. Washington puts on a show at FedEx and exorcises its demons from last year’s Week 12 meltdown. Haskins enters the Rookie of the Year conversation after putting up four touchdowns against the Lions.
Week 13 @ Carolina:
Carolina isn’t the team it was in 2015, but this won’t be an easy game. Washington loses this game after Cam Newton runs over the Redskins D. The team gets cocky after a big home win, and it will show. This will be a game to learn from, and then forget.
Week 14 @ Green Bay:
The last time Washington left Lambeau Field with a win was in 1988. Despite the unwarranted recent success against the Pack, the Redskins will lose this game. This is a tough loss for the Burgundy and Gold, and it won’t get any easier with three straight divisional match-ups up next. Much like the Patriots game, the circumstances don’t favor the Redskins in any way, really, so this won’t be a loss to perseverate over.
Week 15 vs Philadelphia:
It’s revenge time. The Redskins will get a chance to end the seemingly endless losing streak to the Eagles. Washington heads into this game at 7-6, making this essentially a must-win. Not only do the Skins knock off Philadelphia for the first time in three years, but they do so in redeeming fashion. The final score is the same from the last Washington vs Philadelphia match-up at FedEx field, but this time the sides are flipped.
Week 16 vs New York Giants:
The much anticipated Haskins vs Jones battle is finally here. Eli Manning is shown the bench after the Giants are eliminated from playoff contention. The two first-round signal callers combine for a total of 650 passing yards and 6 touchdowns. Although the Skins’ D struggles against an unassuming Giants squad, the offense pulls through and puts on a show. Huge win for the Redskins late in the season.
Week 17 @ Dallas:
At 9-6, it’s make or break time for Washington. With Haskins and the offense playing hot, the Redskins light up the Dallas defense. Unlike last week’s game against New York, the defense delivers too. There’s a new juggernaut in the NFC East and it resides in the nation’s capital. Redskins win the division, and the game. It’s playoff time!
Wildcard Round vs Minnesota:
There’s much anticipation for the Redskins’ first playoff game in a number of seasons. Unfortunately, the Vikings prove too much for the young Washington team, and wins this game behind a stout defense.
Washington leaves the field with a different feeling than the 2012 and 2015 campaigns. There is no finger pointing or deflecting blame, and the quarterback position is still stable. This season will provide hope for Redskins Nation and it will be a preview for what the future holds.