Redskins offense can't find the end zone

Alex Smith (11) and the Redskins have gone six quarters without a touchdown.Photo: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Head coach Jay Gruden: "Third downs were the nemesis."

The Washington Redskins burst into the 2018 season with three touchdowns in the first half of their Week 1 win against the Arizona Cardinals.

They haven't scored one since.

After losing their home opener to the Indianapolis Colts 21-9 on Sunday the Redskins have scored 12 points over the last six quarters. Against the Colts, Washington was 5-for-15 on third down 0-2 in the red zone.

Head coach Jay Gruden said third down failures were particularly harmful in the first half Sunday.

"We had four plays and a punt, messed up on a route. Next time we had six plays a punt and we dropped a pass. Next drive, we had four plays and a punt," he said. "We got a ball batted at the line of scrimmage. Then we had a third and one, we did a little toss crack play, we didn't get a puller, so just four, five drives there in the first half, third downs were the nemesis."

Quarterback Alex Smith passed for 292 yards on 33-of-46 passing, but 23 of those completions were underneath to running backs and tight ends. He didn't attempt many throws downfield, even with the Redskins trailing by two scores late in the game.

Washington running back Adrian Peterson, who ran for 96 yards in Week 1, was held to 20 yards on 11 carries and the Redskins gained just 65 yards on the ground. Slot receiver Jamison Crowder had a team-high 29 yards rushing on two attempts.

"We had some struggles in the run game throughout the course of the game," Gruden said. "On first down, a lot of their movement, we didn't handle very well. We [missed the target on] a couple of runs; which is uncharacteristic. Overall, you can't point to one person or one position. In the running game, I've said it 3,000 times, it's a total team effort, when it doesn't work, or when it does work."

Redskins receivers had a limited impact for the second straight week, catching 10 passes for 100 yards. On Monday Washington worked out former Ravens wide receiver Breshad Perriman. He caught 43 passes for 576 yards and three touchdowns over the last two seasons with Baltimore.

"Yeah, he worked out. We had about four or five guys work out today; some tight ends and just had a workout," Gruden said. "We don't know who we are going to sign yet. There're a couple good players at that workout."

Later Monday the Redskins waived wide receiver Jehu Chesson. He was promoted to the 53-man roster last week.

--RB Adrian Peterson struggled in his second game with Washington. After gaining 96 yards in the opener, he was held to 20 yards on 11 carries. He also caught three passes for 30 yards.

--RB Chris Thompson led the team with 13 catches for 92 yards on Sunday. In two games, Thompson has caught 19 passes for 155 yards and one touchdown.

--QB Alex Smith completed 33 of 46 passes for 292 yards in Sunday's loss to the Colts with no touchdowns or interceptions.

--K Dustin Hopkins provided all of the offense in Sunday's 21-9 loss to the Colts. He hit field goals of 49, 27 and 49 yards, while missing from 49 yards as well.

--RB Rob Kelley injured his toe Sunday and may need surgery, according to head coach Jay Gruden. He had one carry for one yard in Sunday's loss.