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What If Josh Morgan Followed His Own Advice?

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Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan was none too pleased with Josh Morgan.
Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan was none too pleased with Josh Morgan.

Run through the list and you can point to any number of plays from the St. Louis Rams' 31-28 win over the Redskins that made the difference. That's always the case in a game decided by a razor thin margin. Josh Morgan's unsportsmanlike conduct penalty after a third down catch is certainly one of those plays.

On Monday morning, I couldn't help but think about what would have happened if Morgan had followed his own advice.

"You don't want to be the second guy because the second guy is going to get caught," Morgan said. "He's going to come at you and he's going to be the first, second and third guy. You've got to remind yourself not to be that fourth and fifth guy, and throw your hands up and walk back to the huddle."

That was Morgan to the Washington Post last week, prior to the game. Guess who turned out to be that guy?

Morgan_medium

If Morgan gets up without letting his temper get the best of him, the Redskins are at 4th-and-1. They can do one of two things at that point.

Option 1 - Kick the field goal

It would have been a 47-yard field goal attempt, in the Dome, to tie the game. It's not a stretch to think that he would have made it, but Cundiff is 33-for-47 on kicks between 40-49 yards, 70 percent. It's no chip shot.

Option 2 - Go for it

If I were the Redskins, this is probably what I would have done. The Rams had made passing the ball tough, but Shanahan's running game had a decent chance of getting the extra yard, especially if they had turned loose RGIII, whose wheels had made progress for the Skins.

Most likely, Shanahan would have gone for the field goal, tying the game. I'd take my chances with the Rams offense; they moved the ball incredibly well through the game and were facing a defense without Adam Carriker and Brian Orakpo.

Washington converted 31 percent of their third-down attempts. That had a little over a minute at that point, which was certainly enough for another play or two ... if they converted the fourth down. But it never came to that.