Fresh off of a much-needed road win last week against the Miami Dolphins, the Washington Redskins return home to face the undefeated and resurgent San Francisco 49ers. The Redskins are 1-5 on the season and generally regarded as one of the worst teams in the NFL. However, talent is in place for the Redskins to make a statement against the 5-0 49ers.
A lot has changed at Redskins Park in Ashburn since Bill Callahan replaced Jay Gruden as an interim coach. Washington has gone back to the basics as seen by drills during practice by the media. One of the things Callahan has tried to address was the teams’ level of physical play.
Against the Dolphins, the Redskins were led by Adrian Peterson on the ground and produced their first 100-yard game of the season. That will have to be the same blueprint against a physical 49ers defense that ranks in the top two or three in every defensive category in the NFL.
The Redskins will be looking to secure their first win at FedexField since defeating the Cowboys, 20-17 last year in Week 7. Washington will try to win back-to-back games for the first time since defeating the Carolina Panthers and Dallas Cowboys last season in Week’s 6 and 7, respectively.
While speaking to the media from the INOVA Sports Performance Center at Redskins Park after a recent practice, offensive coordinator Kevin O’Connell spoke about his time in San Francisco and the special players that have built the 49ers defense up.
” ..I was actually in San Francisco the year [DL DeForest] Buckner was drafted and from day one he was an impact player and [DL] Arik Armstead was already there,” O’Connell said. “[DE] [Ronald] Blair was there, guys that I watched practice and really grow from when I was there during that season, so I know all about those guys upfront. Then, they add a very high-quality linebacker in [LB Kwon] Alexander in free agency to go with the backend that’s really gelled together. A lot of those guys have been together at least a couple of years going back a few years before that with guys like [S Jaquiski] Tartt and [S] Jimmie Ward and some of those guys. Top to bottom, they do a lot of really good things to complement each other, the scheme complements the players. They do a really good job of fitting their playmakers in spots by down and distance where they want to try and make some plays, whether it’s pressure here from the nickel spot or safety pressure, whatever it is. Then with a good old-fashioned four-man rush with games like a lot of teams we see in our division – Philadelphia, Dallas – trying to put pressure on you that way. So, it’ll be a huge test across the board. First, second, third down, situationally, down in the red zone, short yardage, every situation that we work really hard on will be a huge test Sunday.”
In the team’s last meeting on October 15, 2017, the Redskins defeated the 49ers 26-24 at FedexField.
What would a win over the 49ers do for the Redskins from a statistical and historical standpoint?
A win would give the Redskins consecutive wins for the first time since Week 6 and Week 7 of the 2018 season.
A victory would give the Redskins their first victory at home since Week 7 of the 2018 season.
Winning on Sunday would mark the first time that Washington recorded consecutive wins against San Francisco since the 2004-2005 seasons.
A win gives the Redskins their first win over an NFC opponent this season.
A ‘W’ marks the first time that the Redskins won the first two games with a new head coach since 1978 when they defeated the Patriots and Eagles to start the season under Jack Pardee.
Finally, a win would improve the Redskins overall record against the 49ers to 12-20-1.