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Hall’s fumble return obscured how badly the Redskins were outplayed early. Philadelphia had moved the ball 63 yards in just nine plays and less than three minutes on its opening drive.

It was a ruthlessly efficient start to Kelly’s NFL coaching career. But Washington linebacker Ryan Kerrigan knocked down what was ruled a backwards pass by Vick. Hall was one of the few players on the field to recognize it and snatched the ball unopposed on his way to Washington’s fourth consecutive defensive touchdown in a home opener.

The Redskins finally scored an offensive touchdown with seven seconds left in the third quarter. Morris cut back right on a run to the left side and scored from five yards out. That trimmed the Eagles‘ lead to 33-14. The drive was eight plays for 66 yards. In the quarter Washington had the ball for 11:42 and yet was no closer than where it began the half.

But the Redskins began the fourth quarter with a turnover. Philadelphia receiver Jason Avant fumbled after a short catch and linebacker Perry Riley recovered it. Corner Josh Wilson forced the turnover.

Four plays later, Washington scored again on a Leonard Hankerson touchdown reception of 10 yards. That cut the advantage to 33-20 after the two-point conversion failed.

Griffin finished 30-for-49 for 329 yards and two touchdowns. With 1:14 remaining he hit Hankerson for a 24-yard touchdown pass to make it a one-score game, but Philadelphia recovered the onside kick.

“The first game is not going to make-or-break the season for you,” fullback Darrel Young said. “It [stinks]. We’ve got to get over it and go to Green Bay. We have a job to do next week. Our job is to go 1-1 now and go from there.”