Despite blowout, Chiefs don't question Redskins effort

Despite blowout, Chiefs don't question Redskins effort
December 8, 2013, 5:00 pm
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Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Dexter McCluster (22) scores a touchdown on a punt return against the Washington Redskins in the second quarter at FedEx Field.

(Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports)

Despite losing 45-10 to the Kansas City Chiefs and with rampant speculation that coach Mike Shanahan may be nearing the end of his Redskins tenure, it appeared the Washington players fought hard despite a litany of reasons to do the opposite.

Asked after a terrific special teams performance, Chiefs punt returner Dexter McCluster said the Redskins never quit on the field. 

"As men and as ballplayers they were definitely focused," McCluster said of the Skins. "They wanted to come out here and get a win just like we did."

Special teams has been bad for the Redskins all season, but it was particularly poor in the loss to the Chiefs. Asked if he was surprised Washington continued to kick to him after his first successful return, McCluster said he was surprised.

Asked if the Redskins should have made special teams adjustments McCluster, who finished with 177 return yards and a touchdown, replied, "I'm glad they didn't."

Tamba Hali, who sacked Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III twice, said he was not sure of the Redskins focus because the Chiefs only worried about themselves coming into the game. 

"The entire day defense played well, offense played well, special teams played well," Hali said. 

Kansas City came into Sunday on a three-game losing streak, and Hali said the defense had trouble the last few weeks because opposing teams used quick passes and the run game to counter the attacking Chiefs defensive line. He said the Redskins did not use those same principles.

"I don’t know what they should have done, but we had to do what we got done," Hali said. The Chiefs ended the game with six sacks, and limited Skins running back Alfred Morris to 31 yards on 12 carries.

With the loss to Kansas City, the Redskins drop to 3-10 on the season. Speculation will not damper about coach Mike Shanahan leaving the organization and questions about a strained relationship between head coach and RG3 are unlikely to go away. Last season, the Chiefs struggled through a dismal year and dealt with similar coaching and front office turmoil. Chiefs safety Eric Berry offered advice to the Redskins players for dealing with the losses and drama.

"It’s tough. You just got to lean on your teammates," Berry said. "Stay focused, take it a day at a time.”