September 20, 2019

Washington Redskins: When it comes to football, Skins choke against Dolphins

Today marked the first time the Washington Redskins were able to let their work on the field talk for them in an effort to get out from under the past few weeks of constant drama. All the players knew that they had to block out the noise and hope they could put everything behind them with a win. Unfortunately, after cruising early the Redskins were unable to finish off the Miami Dolphins and fell 17-10.

As surprising as it might be, the Redskins actually dominated Miami for the first 28 minutes of this game. Kirk Cousins was helped out early with 35 yards from Alfred Morris on the team’s first drive where they marched down the field on 12 plays to get the early 3-0 lead. After a three-and-out from the defense, Cousins orchestrated another drive double-digit play drive but was rewarded with a missed field goal. The Redskins hoped that missed opportunities would not haunt them later in the game.

Then it was the defense’s time to show off a bit. After forcing another punt and then being put into a bad situation by a Kirk Cousins interception deep in the Redskins own territory, the defense dug in. The Redskins thought they had limited the damage after forcing a stop on third down but the Dolphins surprised many by going for it on fourth-and-1, where Ryan Kerrigan tracked Damien Williams from behind to give the ball back to the offense. Cousins responded from a bad decision on a scramble drill play with a 16-play, 74-yard drive that ate up 8:49 of game time culminating in a Jordan Reed jump ball touchdown.

With less than two minutes to go in the half, the Redskins were feeling good with a 10-0 lead, but then the defense became exposed. With Duke Ihenacho out of the game with a wrist injury and DeAngelo Hall temporarily sidelined, Ryan Tannehill targeted David Amerson on seven straight pass plays. Amerson had a couple of nice plays but on the seventh target he slipped in the flat and the Dolphins had a walk-in touchdown on a short out route. The Redskins went into halftime up 10-7.

Tannehill continued the gun slinging out of the half with big plays to Rishard Matthews and Jordan Cameron. Then Preston Smith decided to put his mark on the game with his first sack of his young career for a 12-yard loss; the ball was also jarred loose and after pinballing off several bodies Smith even recovered the ball back at the Dolphins 40-yard line (38-yard loss). The offense ended up doing nothing with the opportunity, marking the momentum shift in the game as the Dolphins felt new life.

Two series later after the Redskins went from second-and-4 from the Miami 22, it was third-and-29 from Miami’s 47. Three straight penalties in a row kept the Redskins from even getting off a field goal attempt. The Dolphins seized the opportunity by tieing the game at 10, although the Redskins defense fulfilled the “bend but don’t break mentality” after Miami had a first-and-goal from the 4-yard line. After another 16 yards of penalty yardage for the Redskins, they had to punt the ball away and the special team coverage woes showed. After a 54-yard punt from Tress Way, the coverage was non-existent and Jarvis Landry was given a 69-yard house call putting the Redskins down for the first time all game 17-10.

The Redskins looked like they might have a comeback in them, starting with a 34-yard kickoff return from speedster Chris Thompson. The Redskins had a first-and-10 at the Dolphins 26 because of big gains from Andre Roberts and Ryan Grant, but then the gun slinging nature of Cousins took over. After dangerously throwing in double-coverage to Jordan Reed, Cousins threw up another prayer intended for Pierre Garcon that ended up being intercepted on a great play from Miami’s Brice McCain.

After another defensive stop by the Redskins defense, that played fairly well, the Redskins had one more shot at tying the game up with about five minutes left in the game. After another risky jump ball throw, Cousins settled down with strikes to Roberts and Garcon, complemented by a gashing run by Morris. Unfortunately for the Redskins the drive stalled on a fourth-and-7 where Cousins felt the pressure. The defense was unable to force a punt at the end and the Washington Redskins fell to 0-1 on the young 2015 season.

About Neil Dalal

Neil Dalal is a Staff Writer for District Sports Page covering the Redskins, Wizards, and Maryland Terrapins. Neil grew up in Silver Spring, MD and attends the University of Maryland. Neil has loved everything related to the Redskins, Wizards, Capitals, and Terrapins since he was eight years old. However, he favors the Orioles, as he started watching baseball before the Expos moved to DC. You can follow Neil on Twitter @NeilDalal96.

Trackbacks

  1. […] So what did we expect? Things looked good when the Washington Redskins were up 10-0 although all fans had to be thinking they should have been up even more. Then when the punt coverage team gave up a house call that Tress Way blamed himself for not getting enough hang time, fans had watched this same story unfold multiple times before. The Redskins hoped that playing winning football would quite all of the off the field drama surrounding the franchise, but instead they are the same team from years past that choked away a lead. […]

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