Washington’s first possession ended in an interception. The second was three-and-out. The Redskins ran all of seven plays in the period and were outgained 143-23. No surprise they fell behind 14-0 just two plays into the second quarter. And one play was huge in all of that.
Early in the quarter, the Eagles made a bad snap out of the shotgun on second-and-12 from their own 16. Michael Vick picked up the ball and hurriedly got rid of it from the end zone. A flag flew? Grounding? Nope. The Redskins’ Rocky McIntosh was flagged for roughing the passer and the Eagles’ bad situation became a first down at the 31. They moved it all the way down the field, scoring on a 7-yard pass from Vick to tight end Brent Celek.
Perhaps the most amazing thing at halftime is that the Redskins weren’t behind by a lot more than 20-3. They had the ball for only 8:22 in the first half. In the first 12 1/2 minutes of the second quarter, they were outgained 106-9. Grossman threw another interception. The Eagles were on their way to a 250-yard half.
But after that early second-quarter touchdown, the Eagles couldn’t get into the end zone. They had to settle for two field goals. And the Redskins, despite giving up a huge sack on third down very late in the half, found some magic dust in kicker Graham Gano, who hit a 50-yard field goal with 30 seconds left to get Washington on the board and keep the Eagles at least within sight.
It was a much better quarter for the Redskins in many respects, but that’s all relative because it really wasn’t all that good. Sure, the Redskins moved the ball some. Sure, they kept the Eagles from scoring — and intercepted two passes. But they only cut the deficit by three, thanks to a Gano field goal early in the quarter.
A big reason why they didn’t score more? Grossman threw two more interceptions, both to Kurt Coleman. Yeah, the same Coleman who also had a “pick” in the first half. Grossman’s four interceptions through the first three quarters were only one fewer than he had in the previous four games.
Coleman, meanwhile, saw his career-interception total rise from one to four thanks to his handiwork with Grossman’s passes.
The really good news for Redskins fans is Grossman’s pick total couldn’t grow, as John Beck came in for the final quarter.
The last was the best quarter of the day for the Redskins, and certainly one that will create some conversation because it created a quarterback question.View Entire Story
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Washington Times sports editor Mike Harris has more than 30 years experience in the business as a reporter, columnist and manager. He’s covered a wide variety of events including two Olympics, horse racing, auto racing, professional and college sports. E-mail him at email@example.com and follow the section on Twitter @WashTimesSports.
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