Redskins-Jets: The basics

Redskins-Jets: The basics
December 3, 2011, 1:04 pm
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A look at the Jets-Redskins game:

When: 1 p.m., Sunday.

Where: FedEx Field, Landover, Md.

TV: CBS (Ian Eagle and Dan Fouts).

Radio: ESPN 980 AM, WWXX 94.3 FM, WWXT 92.7 FM (Larry Michael, Sonny Jurgensen and Sam Huff).

Records: Jets 6-5, Redskins 4-7.

Last week: The Jets won 28-24 vs. Buffalo; the Redskins won 23-17 at Seattle.

Line: Jets by 3.

Injuries: Redskins Out: S LaRon Landry (groin). Questionable: WR Terrence Austin (hamstring), LB London Fletcher (ankle), DE Stephen Bowen (knee), FB Darrel Young (concussion). Probable: WR Niles Paul (toe), WR Donte Stallworth (foot), LB Brian Orakpo (ankle), LG Maurice Hurt (knee), QB Rex Grossman (left shoulder), S DeJon Gomes (knee), WR Jabar Gaffney (foot), RT Jammal Brown (hip).

Jets Out: DL Mike DeVito (knee). Probable: DL Marcus Dixon (shoulder), OL Vlad Ducasse (knee), RB Shonn Greene (rib), WR Jeremy Kerley (knee), C Nick Mangold (ankle), LB Calvin Pace (groin), DB Brodney Pool (knee), OL Matt Slauson (knee), RB LaDainian Tomlinson (knee).

FOUR THINGS TO WATCH1. BIG PLAY REPEAT
Yes, that was running back Roy Helu hurdling a defender for a 28-yard touchdown run on third-and-3. And absolutely, that was Anthony Armstrong catching a 50-yard Hail Mary-type pass on third-and-19 for the go-ahead score against Seattle.

For the first time in seven weeks, the Redskins offense had three plays of at least 28 yards.

Against the Jets defense, getting a huge play will be important and it will be difficult. The Jets have allowed the fourth-fewest completions of 20-plus yards (27).

2. CONTAINING BURRESS, HOLMES
Playing twice a year against Hakeem Nicks, DeSean Jackson and Dez Bryant, the Redskins are used to having their hands full against receivers who have size, speed or both. The next challenge is 6-foot-5 Plaxico Burress and the speedy Santonio Holmes.

Burress and Holmes have combined for 74 catches and 12 touchdowns. Their presence has allowed tight end Dustin Keller to get space to lead New York with 40 catches for 575 yards.

It will be up to DeAngelo Hall and Josh Wilson to account for Burress and Holmes. The key?

Pass rush, No. 1, secondary coach Bob Slowik said. Get some heat on Mark Sanchez. But weve played a lot of tall receivers Weve had enough experience as far as learning how to try and play that game. Our guys have a feel for it.

A game-plan guess: In the red zone and on third-and-long, defensive coordinator Jim Haslett dabbles with more zero coverage in an attempt to pressure Sanchez into mistakes.

3. HELU STARTING, PART 2
Although he could be fibbing as he is know to do Redskins coach Mike Shanahan has declared rookie running back Roy Helu this weeks starter, a nod he clearly earned by gaining 162 yards on 30 combined rushesreceptions.

Helu produced against a top-half-of-the-NFL Seattle defense and the Jets have similar numbers. Gang Green is eighth overall and 15th against the rush.

Helu had 17 first-down touches against Seattle and seven gained 2 or fewer yards. But he did have several plus-plays on screen passes, which will be a key against the Jets pass rush.

Hes come a long way, offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan said of Helu in the passing game. Its just been a gradual process and he has done better at it each week.

4. PLACE-KICK PROTECTION
Seriously, can it get any worse for the Redskins when they set up for a field goal or an extra point?

Kicker Graham Gano leads the NFL (again) with nine misses and that includes blocked kicks by Arizona, Dallas, Buffalo and Seattle. The Seahawks also blocked an extra point and got a piece of a made field goal.

The decision by Mike Shanahan to stick with Gano is reasonable at this point of the season, who is better that is also available? Probably nobody. An emphasis for Gano should also be kickoff placement he booted one out of bounds and nearly another against Seattle. The last five games are critical for his future in Washington.

PICK: Jets 16-13.

Contact OHalloran at rohalloran@comcastsportsnet.com

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