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Rapid Reaction: Washington Redskins

LANDOVER, Md. -- A few thoughts on the Washington Redskins' 45-14 loss Thursday night to the New York Giants:

What it means: The Redskins are a disaster after only four games. Was it just a matter of being banged up? Maybe that contributed to the terrible showing, but in no way does it explain everything. The Redskins turn the ball over way too much, starting with quarterback Kirk Cousins. He looked every bit the backup Thursday night. But it was a complete team effort when it came to playing poorly. The special teams again did nothing and gave up field position. At least there wasn't a major disaster of a play. The defense was bad -- Giants tight end Larry Donnell hammered the Redskins time and again. The Redskins' defense needs more from key players, and the secondary clearly is being challenged. That's putting it mildly. But what this loss means is that the Redskins have a long road ahead and the big rebuild is in the very early stages.

Stock watch: Cousins. Down. He played terrific in the first half against the Philadelphia Eagles, but he carried his second half over into Thursday's game against the Giants. In 11 career games, Cousins now has thrown 15 interceptions and lost three fumbles. He never really looked to be in a good rhythm in this game, too often throwing behind receivers and four times throwing to the other team. Cousins has now started six games; he's played well in three of them and bad in the other three. He'll continue to get a chance to grow, but after looking like a future starter last week -- whether here or somewhere else -- he looked like a backup Thursday.

Secondary woes: Washington's secondary, and the overall pass defense, was bad. They let a tight end in Donnell have a career game, and he did so in part because of how well he set up the defensive backs, with good hard plants and cuts back the other way to beat leverage. Time and again that happened. DeAngelo Hall's loss was a tough one for this group, but they have to play better than they did Thursday. Eli Manning picked Washington apart all night -- and he had time to do so. Which, of course, is another issue.

Game ball: Really, not sure anyone deserves a game ball after such a game. But I'm going to give one to tight end Niles Paul. Yes, he only played a half but he caught three passes for 60 yards and ended his night with a mighty nice catch before getting drilled in the head by a safety. Paul was woozy as he was helped off the field. The play initially was ruled a drop, but after a review they made the correct call. So it became one heck of a catch.

What's next: The Seattle Seahawks. Do I need to say more than that? Oh, and it's on Monday night so the nation gets to watch the Redskins again. But the real problem is that Washington is in danger of a 1-4 record before then heading to play the Arizona Cardinals in Week 6.