- The Washington Times - Sunday, December 7, 2008

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FIRST QUARTER

What happened: Jason Campbell’s first pass attempt was picked off by Ed Reed when he was hit while throwing, and Baltimore responded with a long, wide-open pass over the middle on first down. The Ravens then ripped two long runs, one by rookie Ray Rice followed by a touchdown scamper by Le’Ron McClain. The next Redskins drive when Campbell was again hit while throwing by Terrell Suggs, and then the Ravens tipped the ensuing punt. On Washington’s next drive, Clinton Portis fumbled and Ed Reed scooped it up and returned it for a touchdown, making it 14-0. Washington’s final punt of the half almost got blocked, and the quarter ended with Washington on the move.

Analysis: The Redskins came out flat for the second week in a row, and the Ravens pounced; with fewer than six minutes gone in the game, Baltimore held a two-touchdown lead. With the fumble, pick and blocked punt, Washington had major breakdowns in three key areas. The running game proved effective, but many of the yards came before the Portis fumble.

SECOND QUARTER



What happened: The teams traded short possessions before Washington opened a drive at their own 43 and started moving the ball, including a long pass to Antwaan Randle El. But the drive had a familiar ending, as Shaun Suisham kicked a field goal wide right. Each team’s next drives sputtered, and even after Flacco completed a 30-yard pass to Todd Heap the Ravens had to punt. The Redskins had a bizarre run where they had three penalties called on third down, but they still converted on third and 15; the drive got across the 50 but still ended with another punt.

Analysis: Baltimore continued penetrating into Washington’s backfield, which disrupted both the passing and running attack of the Redskins. But at least Washington stopped some of the bleeding, as it kept the Ravens from adding to the two-touchdown lede. Daunting Baltimore stat: The Ravens have won 19 in a row at home after leading at halftime.

THIRD QUARTER

What happened: The teams traded three-and-outs leading to punts to start the third quarter. Chris Horton didn’t return to the game, meaning Washington had Mike Green in the backfield. The Ravens finally put together a long drive, including a 19-yard wide open pass to Heap; when it stalled, Matt Stover nailed a 32-yard field goal. The Redskins ensuing drive ended with an incomplete pass over the middle into traffic, leading to another punt. Near the end of the period, Redskins got a rare takeaway on the next drive in the form of a Laron Landry interception.

Analysis: The third quarter was mostly made up of clock-churning drudgery, with the highlights being a field goal and an interception. The teams combined for a grand total of 96 yards, with the Redskins coming up on the short end of that deal with 25.

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