- The Washington Times - Monday, December 8, 2008

— BALTIMORE | A once-promising season for the Washington Redskins - remember that 4-1 start? - continued to dissolve Sunday night with another prime-time defeat, forcing them to deal with a cold reality after losing 24-10 to the Baltimore Ravens at frigid M&T Bank Stadium.

The Redskins are a last-place team.

They started their second losing streak of the season after two Redskins turnovers in the first six minutes equaled two Ravens touchdowns and the Washington offense was held in check by Baltimore’s sensational defense.

At 7-6, the Redskins tumbled into the NFC East cellar, a half-game behind Philadelphia (7-5-1) and ninth in the conference. The Redskins were unable to take advantage of losses by Atlanta and Dallas (both 8-5) earlier Sunday.

The loss snapped the Redskins’ four-game road winning streak, and now only wins at Cincinnati, over Philadelphia at home and at San Francisco will give them a chance at securing the sixth and final playoff spot.

“Obviously, our backs are against the wall,” tight end Chris Cooley said. “We may win all three and not get in the playoffs.”

Baltimore (9-4) won for the seventh time in eight games to set up an AFC North showdown next week against Pittsburgh (10-3).

After the Redskins scored 10 consecutive points in the fourth quarter to cut the lead to 17-10, the Ravens put the game away with a clock-draining (nearly eight minutes) 12-play, 83-yard drive that ended with Joe Flacco’s 28-yard touchdown pass to Derrick Mason with 3:44 left.

Redskins quarterback Jason Campbell was 21-for-37 for 218 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions. His team’s offensive struggles continued; the unit has just five touchdowns in the last five games, during which time the Redskins have gone 1-4.

“We just sucked,” Cooley said. “We suck right now as an offense. We can’t put up points. We have a long way to go.”

Running back Clinton Portis didn’t play after the opening series of the third quarter and was limited to 11 carries, but the team did not report a new injury. Starting tackles Jon Jansen (sprained left MCL) and Chris Samuels (strained right triceps) did not finish the game.

“We weren’t playing with a full deck [in the second half] but we were early and we weren’t moving the ball,” coach Jim Zorn said. “We adjusted at halftime and I thought we came out very strong.”

Baltimore safety Ed Reed intercepted two passes and returned a fumble 22 yards for a touchdown. Redskins safety LaRon Landry’s interception and fumble return resulted in the Redskins’ two scores.

The Redskins dug themselves a 17-0 hole before trying to forge a comeback. Shaun Suisham’s 42-yard field goal with 13:40 remaining prevented their first shutout since a 36-0 shellacking at the hands of the New York Giants in October 2005.

Landry set up the score with his second interception of the year. The Redskins got as far as the Baltimore 12 before the drive stalled.

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