Throughout the fall, we want to make your water cooler chatter on Monday mornings a little less painless if the topic turns to football and the Redskins. While we can’t do anything about the team, we can at least do our best to prepare you to make it look like you care.
The ‘skins were not supposed to win this game. The first three weeks include a close win/escape in Dallas, a heartbreaking choke of a loss to Houston and then the metaphoric-egg-laying in St. Louis last week. Heck, every single one of the 19* analysts on Fox even picked the Eagles to beat up on Donovan McNabb in his first return to Philadelphia in something other than green.
*Please note, there are less than 19 football analysts in this photo. It was hyperbole.
There’s a reason games are played on the field and not on paper/behind analysts’ desks. As you chat about the Redskins 17-12 win, here are a few quick points to keep in mind this morning, after the jump.
- Tale of Two Quarterbacks. First off, Philly didn’t boo McNabb. While it seemed to be the definitive storyline going into the game, the infamous Philadelphia crowd did not razz Donovan McNabb upon seeing him in another uniform. Actually, they gave him a nice ovation, for the record. The hometown crowd ended up distracted by their own quarterback, soon enough after kickoff. In the first half, the resurgent Michael Vick got knocked out of the game with a rib injury, forcing former starter Kevin Kolb back under center for the rival Eagles. Once that happened, Philly had to dig deep to try and find some offense, and the Redskins defense bent – but never broke – to preserve the win.
- Coooooooooley. The biggest moment of the game may have been the 31-yard connection between McNabb and tight end Chris Cooley. That put the Redskins up 14-0 late in the first quarter.
- Balancing Out. One of the takeaways from the first few weeks of the season was the lack of a balanced offensive attack. The Redskins had much better ball control this week, running the ball 2/3 of the time and gaining more than 150 yards on the ground to accompany a decent – but not great – passing day for McNabb.
- Thing To Keep In Mind for Week 5. The defense gave up a touchdown late in the fourth quarter, and other than a few field goals, really held their own. The one problem may still be their inability to get teams off the field. The Eagles had the ball more than five minutes longer than the ‘skins, and while they were held to 5 for 14 on third downs, they did go execute both fourth down attempts to keep drives going. The Packers will not be nearly as forgiving if they get extra chances to hold onto the ball.
Have a great week Washington. You may be 2-2, but at least you lead the NFC East.