Monday, December 24, 2007

Redskins Take Matters Into Their Own Hands

The Redskins came into the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome last night with a sense of purpose, drive, desire, and momentum.

Combining a grinding running attack with a timely passing game and a punishing defensive effort, the Washington Redskins walked out of last night's game 32-21 winners over the Minnesota Vikings.

Clinton Portis ground out 76 yards and a rushing touchdown against the top-ranked rush defense in the NFL, and also threw a touchdown pass to Antwaan Randle-El in the 2nd quarter. Todd Collins, starting again in place of the injured Jason Campbell, had a magnificent performance. Collins completed 22 of 29 passes for 254 yards and two TD's, with no interceptions.

The receiving corps had one of their better days overall, as well. Santana Moss caught 4 passes for 71 yards and a touchdown, and Antwaan Randle-El had 5 catches for 66 yards and the aforementioned touchdown reception from Portis.

The defense forced 3 turnovers, including two interceptions off of the arm of Vikes QB Tavaris Jackson, and stuffed rookie sensation Adrian Peterson to just 27 yards on 9 carries. Peterson, as you may recall, set an NFL single-game record with 296 yards rushing against the Chargers earlier this year.

The Redskins (8-7) did not turn the ball over once, and even led 25-0 at halftime. When the Vikings (8-7) closed the gap to 25-14 in the 4th quarter, the Redskins marched down the field and scored another touchdown to make the game 32-14 with less than 6 minutes to go and solidified their victory. A Viking touchdown with less than 2 minutes remaining in the game rounded out the scoring.

This is their 3rd win in a row, and also a big win as the Redskins HAD to beat Minnesota to keep their hopes alive for the playoffs. Now, they control their destiny, as a victory against the 13-2 Dallas Cowboys next week at FedEx Field will give them a playoff berth. In fact, if the Skins lose next week, they're still in the playoffs if Minnesota loses next week, as well.

They have been playing solid football all-around over the past 3 weeks, ever since Sean Taylor's funeral and the injury to Jason Campbell, it seems this team is turning tragedy into triumph. After falling to 5-7, the Redskins won 24-16 over Chicago, 22-10 over the Giants, and now an 11 point victory over the upstart Vikings, none of these wins have been flukes, and they have all come against good football teams.

With the Cowboys having wrapped up the division, and Terrell Owens injured, many suspect that this gives the Redskins (who nearly beat the Cowboys in Dallas) a good shot at winning and earning their 2nd playoff trip in the last 3 years.

History tells us that this could be a Redskins win, as well...any time the Skins and Cowboys play a game that has anything beyond the rivalry at stake, and the game is in Washington...the Skins win.

- 1972 NFC Championship - Redskins 26, Cowboys 3
- 1982 NFC Championship - Redskins 31, Cowboys 17
- Dec. 1992, Skins need to win to earn playoff berth - Redskins 20, Cowboys 13
- Dec. 1997, Last game at RFK - Redskins 37, Cowboys 10
- Dec. 2005, Skins need win to keep playoff hopes alive - Redskins 35, Cowboys 7

Need I go on? I didn't think so. This Redskins team is refocused, re-energized, and ready to roll!


No comments: