Perhaps the most encouraging thing to emerge from yesterday's contest was the evidence of the big-play potential the Redskins now possess. On both sides of the ball, the Redskins now have the ability to turn a game in an instant.
Defensively, the multiple pressure calls, combined with improved zone techniques in the secondary, threaten a turnover on most pass plays.
On offense increased speed is the key. Tim Hightower may still frustratingly look like an all-or-nothing runner, but this shouldn't detract from his ability to go the distance.
Hightower's straight-ahead speed makes him a lethal threat on the Redskins' zone stretch plays. Kyle Shanahan's clever play calls and willingness to test teams deep should lead to lots of big plays this season.
After carving out a healthy early lead, it's disappointing that the Redskins were unable to seal victory. But Mike Shanahan's revamped roster offered enough evidence to suggest the franchise is much further along the road back to respectability.