Washington Redskins schedule analysis

Breakdown: The misery that Washington Redskins fans suffered through last season has resulted in the predictable reward for this coming season: a notably soft schedule. Washington will meet just two non-divisional opponents who had winning records in 2010 (the New York Jets and New England Patriots). They’ll also meet one divisional rival, the Philadelphia Eagles, after their bye week and another at home in the season-opener, the New York Giants. What also helps is a schedule that includes six teams that have questions at quarterback for the coming season.

Of course, the Redskins don’t know what they’re doing at that position just yet (and yes, the entire Donovan McNabb fiasco still baffles me). But if head coach Mike Shanahan is going to put his team on a positive path, these are the kind of advantages that will help the cause.

Complaint department: Whatever hopes the Redskins have for an improvement over last year’s woes might vanish in the final five weeks of the season. It’s bad enough that they’ll see the Jets and the Patriots in the first two weeks of December. But road games against the Giants and Philadelphia (in the season finale) aren’t going to be easy, either. At least the Minnesota Vikings are in town for Christmas Eve. That’s the only decent matchup the Redskins will see during the holiday season.

It’s about time: There’s always plenty of reasons to tune in for a Cowboys-Redskins game. On Sept. 26 -- when Washington travels to Dallas for a "Monday Night Football" contest -- there will be another storyline: Whether the Redskins actually can win in the palatial stadium Jerry Jones built two years ago. Washington is 0-2 in that building and this would be a great time to change their fortunes.

Redskins Regular Season Schedule (All times Eastern)

Week 1: Sunday, Sep. 11, NY Giants, 4:15 PM

Week 2: Sunday, Sep. 18, Arizona, 1:00 PM

Week 3: Monday, Sep. 26, at Dallas, 8:30 PM

Week 4: Sunday, Oct. 2, at St. Louis, 1:00 PM

Week 5: BYE

Week 6: Sunday, Oct. 16, Philadelphia, 1:00 PM

Week 7: Sunday, Oct. 23, at Carolina, 1:00 PM

Week 8: Sunday, Oct. 30, at Buffalo, 4:05 PM

Week 9: Sunday, Nov. 6, San Francisco, 1:00 PM

Week 10: Sunday, Nov. 13, at Miami, 1:00 PM

Week 11: Sunday, Nov. 20, Dallas, 1:00 PM

Week 12: Sunday, Nov. 27, at Seattle, 4:05 PM

Week 13: Sunday, Dec. 4, NY Jets, 1:00 PM

Week 14: Sunday, Dec. 11, New England, 1:00 PM

Week 15: Sunday, Dec. 18, at NY Giants, 1:00 PM

Week 16: Saturday, Dec. 24, Minnesota, 1:00 PM

Week 17: Sunday, Jan. 1, at Philadelphia, 1:00 PM