Snap To Judgement: Cowboys Center Costa Hears Voices Says Redskins Defense

Redskins - CowboysIf the Washington Redskins’ defense truly mimicked the Dallas Cowboys’ snap count as ‘Boys center Phil Costa accused them of, then it was Bill Belichick-clever of the ‘Skins.

Costa snapped the ball early four times in Monday night’s Cowboys-Redskins game, won by Dallas 18-16.

Costa did not name names. Redskins and former-Cowboys defensive end Stephen Bowen is the main “person of interest” as one who might have done this devilishly clever deed. Bowen was adamant that no such thing occurred according to tweets by Washington sports writers.
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@dshif Daniel Shiferaw
Gotta say – Stephen Bowen was pretty upset with Phil Costa’s accusations. Most animated he’s been since he’s been here.

@Rich_Campbell Rich Campbell
#Redskins DE Stephen Bowen says he lost respect for Cowboys C Phil Costa after snap count allegations: “He’s making excuses for messing up.”

@john_keim John Keim
Stephen bowen on costa:be a man and tell the truth. He’s lying. How come no other linemen jumped?
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Redskins back-up nose tackle Chris Neild says “No Way” the Redskins D-line cheated against Dallas Cowboys in Chuck Carroll’s story on Football News Now.

Our Bloguin sister-site, The Cowboys Nation, graded Costa “F.” I’m sure the Cowboys coaches did the same. 

Lets make a deal here. Costa explains to his fans and coaches why he snapped early more than once in a season and the Redskins defense explains why it allowed two big fourth-quarter plays—Felix Jones’ 40 yard run and Tony Romo’s conversion of third and 21—that let Dallas win a game Costa trying to lose.

There. I feel better.

Rex Grossman ranks 20th on quarterback passing yards after three weeks of play. If we have learned anything about Kyle Shanahan’s offense, it is that it eats yards. If Donovan McNabb were in his second season in this system, he would have thrown for more yards. The offense seems crisper with Grossman than with McNabb, until they get to the red zone. Touchdowns from the red zone are as much an issue now as last year.

The Redskins are the 15th-ranked offense in yards per game (361.7). They are the least penalized unit, with 10 flags. They rank 23rd in third-down conversion percentage (32). The top three units in that category are San Diego (62), New Orleans (57) and New England (54). The break point is 40 percent, the number hit by Carolina and the New York Jets, both tied at 15th in the league. The ‘Skins rank 16th on defense.

The current defensive ranking of Washington’s next five opponents are:

St. Louis Rams  31
Philadelphia Eagles 12
Carolina Panthers  17
Buffalo Bills 26
San Francisco 49ers  7

The advantage of finishing last in the division is that fourth-place teams like Washington and Buffalo face each other the following season. Both Redskins and Buffalo fans circled October 30 on the calendar as the date of a winnable game.

Well, 2-1 Washington is not easy to beat and 3-0 Buffalo’s offense is playing lights out. Their success is due to more than QB Ryan Fitzpatrick. RB Fred Jackson is the fourth-ranked rusher and should be on your fantasy team. LB Nick Barnett injected new life in Buffalo’s defense.

The league should make up one of those flex schedules for teams in this situations so that we can switch opponents to someone like Kansas City. Beating Buffalo is not out of the question, but I have unchecked it from the winnable column.

DeAngelo Hall backed away from his vintage MeAngelo post-game rant Monday night where he blamed everyone but himself for Dez Bryant’s 30-yard completion on a third-and 21 play. Hall said he met with the coach Mike Shanahan Tuesday morning after the team landed at Dulles. It was around 4:30 AM I hear.

Jim Haslett explained the rationale for the all-out blitz on the play–to force an early throw by Tony Romo.  Romo beat the play. Kudos to him. That’s the only way to read it. That’s why we watch sports.

Haslett is being crushed in the Twitterverse for the call. I loved it when I saw it and won’t back away now because it didn’t work. Like I said, it’s sports. Haslett figured on a successful  stop and that the ‘Boys would go for it on fourth down. That’s when he would have called in a dime package for deep coverage.

Why would go for an all out blitz? Because Washington’s front seven is so much improved. There was a good shot they could get ‘er done. The fact that they did not meant more pressure on Hall, the designated playmaker on defense, to save everyone’s butt. The breakdown was on the entire unit, not just Hall who misplayed the coverage.

Next time Haslett may not go for eight-man pressure, especially if it means trusting Hall without deep help.

Anthony Brown

About Anthony Brown

Lifelong Redskins fan and blogger about football and life since 2004. Joined MVN's Hog Heaven blog in 2005 and then moved Redskins Hog Heaven to Bolguin Network. Believes that the course of a season is pre-ordained by management decisions made during the offseason. Can occasionally be found on the This Given Sunday blog and he does guest posts.

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