Redskins wake-up call

DALLAS -- It’s game day, which I’m guessing you already knew, so here are three areas of interest Monday (of course, the game is the primary one):

  1. Who starts at quarterback? It still would be a major shock if anyone but Colt McCoy started against Dallas. If this decision is solely up to the coaching staff, it will wait a little longer to get Robert Griffin III back in the game. It’s about his health. The Redskins want to make sure he can make plays with his legs, which have to be a crucial part of his game. And it’s about where he’s at in the offense; if he were a well-schooled veteran in this offense, then perhaps you could plug him in after one week of practice. But Griffin is a developing quarterback and the coaches need to make sure he can run the offense as needed – and when under duress. It’s not just about how fast he’s running or cutting or how he’s throwing.

  2. Tom Compton’s first start. Tyler Polumbus has struggled at right tackle all season; this isn’t just about a knee issue. Now it’s up to Compton to fill this role until, they hope, Morgan Moses is ready. It’s too early to wonder about what they might do here in the offseason. They’ve drafted players to develop along the line, but none of them have become starters based on their own merit. Compton is playing because Polumbus didn’t do the job. Compton was driven back too often in the summer whenever facing starting caliber linemen – whether in games or in practices. He does have good feet and if he can help on backside blocks it would be a start. Dallas’ defensive line has not applied a lot of pressure, but they are certainly capable if blockers aren’t doing their jobs.

  3. On the blog. A few things for Monday’s pregame reading, starting with some game-day notes and analysis, taking a look at Dallas quarterback Tony Romo and comparing how both teams built their lines. Remember, the Cowboys had a cap penalty, too, and were in worse shape when it came to money room. Drafting well is a great way to overcome such issues. Also, I took a look at the Redskins’ red zone issues. Before last week, they weren’t terrible in this area, but it is a key Monday because if they don’t convert here it will be an awfully long night. Among the issues that I’ll explain: inexperience, both at quarterback and other spots. And if you want to read up on the Cowboys, click on this link for lots of insight.