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Santana Moss’ return a bright spot, even with only four catches
SEATTLE — Santana Moss didn’t exactly arrive with a bang, but he arrived. And for a Redskins team in the throes of a losing streak, the return of their best receiver Sunday was a rare bit of good news.
Moss, playing for the first time since breaking his left hand against Carolina on Oct. 23, caught four passes for 29 yards as the Redskins snapped a six-game losing streak with a 23-17 win over the Seahawks.
“I was just glad for the win, whatever role I could play,” Moss said. “Once I got hit a couple of times here and there, it started to feel good.”
With rain and wind in play for most of the game, and two of the NFL’s least productive offenses on the field, the stage wasn’t exactly set for a breakout receiving performance. But just having No. 89 lined up in his familiar spot was a bright spot for a team that hadn’t won a game in his absence.
The Redskins got Moss involved at the outset, Rex Grossman hitting him for a short gain on the game’s second play and then throwing deep down the left side on the ensuing play. Cornerback Brandon Browner denied Moss 38 yards downfield, but notice had been served that Washington’s big-play threat was back.
The ball didn’t go to Moss much — he had three catches in the first half for 16 yards — but he appeared to be the first read on several other plays that turned into short gains for others as Grossman completed 16 of 19 in the half.
“It feels good to be able to take some of the looks that have been missing,” Moss said. “Just being out there, I knew I was contributing however I could.”
Grossman attempted another deep ball for Moss early in the third quarter, throwing 46 yards down the middle. Unfortunately, Moss had run about 50 yards, and the underthrown ball found the hands of Seattle’s Richard Sherman as the Redskins wasted good field position.
“At the start of the second half, the only thing I was unhappy with Rex was that Santana was wide open on a play,” Redskins coach Mike Shanahan said. “He has got to make that throw every time. You have to make that throw; it’s your read.”
Moss, in his seventh season in Washington, had 301 yards on 25 catches and two touchdowns before his injury, which occurred when he fell on the hand while making a low catch against the Panthers. He underwent surgery and missed four games, having pins removed from the hand Nov. 14. He returned to practice Wednesday.
“Early in the season, we had a good rhythm with Rex and had some things working,” he said. “It’s good to sort of get back toward getting that back. Today was a positive step.”
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