Patriots cruise by Redskins despite injuries

Washington had a chance to stun the football world and upset the Patriots on Sunday, but instead, it was more of the same old Redskins in a 27-10 Patriots romp.

Here's what we learned...

  1. Washington's skill position players owe Kirk Cousins a massive apology. Moments into the second half, already down 17-3, Matt Jones dropped a pass and then fumbled later on in the drive. It was the team's fifth drop of the day to that point. An earlier drop resulted in an interception and another came on a crucial third down. This has been Washington's story this season. Even if Cousins is playing good football -- he actually had New England's secondary on its heels for a time Sunday -- there is just not enough general competence around him to run the machine.
  1. It seems like Bill Belichick and Tom Brady had somewhere to be on Sunday. After an early first-quarter score, he hit a surprise onside kick and recovered. From there, New England leaned on LeGarrette Blount to grind the clock down. Perhaps, with the offensive line at its unhealthiest -- Sebastian Vollmer left the game with a head injury -- the Patriots were just looking to get out of this one with a win and a healthy quarterback.
  1. We would say that the Dion Lewis knee injury will hamper New England's offense down the stretch, but then Brandon Bolden runs for 12 yards on his first touch. Later on in the drive, he catches a touchdown pass from 20 yards out on a third and 8. New England has always been incredibly deep at running back, especially for a team that is underwhelming at best across their offensive line.
  1. It's fair to wonder why Brady was still in the game up 27-3 with 4:46 left, but the problem with questioning a Belichick-coached team is that we're so often wrong. Yes, Rob Gronkowski once sustained a serious injury on an extra point but even then, there was good reason to have Gronkowski on special teams.
  1. This blowout was about as lackadaisical as the Patriots looked all season, which makes us wonder: Who is actually going to beat this team? New England has dates against the Giants, Bills, Broncos and Eagles coming up. Is Denver's offense good enough to keep pace? Could Rex Ryan do it with another crack? At this point, we're inclined to say no. This team shows no signs of slowing down.
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