Avoiding a let down: Redskins prep for big game versus Cleveland

The Washington Redskins have been notorious for playing to the level of their opponents.  But, after notching four straight victories in high profile games, the Redskins have played themselves back into the NFC play picture.  For the Redskins, every game should be treated as a playoff game from here on out.  With the status of their star quarterback Robert Griffin III in limbo, Washington must really focus in on the match up with the Cleveland Browns.  The ever important question is, will Cleveland’s 5-8 record affect the Redskins preparation?

Mike Shanahan has kept up his typical ambiguous style regarding which quarterback will start, but even so, Redskins fans have to be pretty confident if Kirk Cousins gets the nod.  While not the dynamic dual threat that RGIII is, Cousins has proven to be a more then capable backup during his brief playing time, keeping the ‘Skins in the game against the Atlanta Falcons and helping to finish a late game rally last week against the Baltimore Ravens.  Two key factors in the game against the Browns will be pass protection and the ability to run the ball.

Like the Redskins, the Browns are led by two rookies at quarterback and running back in Brandon Weeden and Trent Richardson.  While the Browns duo has not been as impressive as Robert Griffin III and Alfred Morris, Cleveland has fought hard throughout the season and gutted out some tough victories against the Cincinnati Bengals and Pittsburgh Steelers, two teams the Redskins have lost to in 2012.

The 18th ranked rushing defense of the Cleveland Browns should offer some holes for Morris to take advantage of and run through.  Regardless of who is behind center for the Redskins, it will be imperative for Washington to continue to feed the ball to Alfred Morris and trust that he can keep up the pace of his record setting season.  How do you think the Redskins will fare if RGIII is unable to go?  Let us know with a comment below.

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