Washington Redskins – 40 New Orleans Saints – 32
By now I am sure you are aware that the Washington Redskins went marching into Saints territory and did something that no team was able to do last year — win in New Orleans — and did it in a rather strong fashion.
The much anticipated debut of Robert Griffin III lived up to everyone in Redskins Nation’s expectation. That in and of itself seemed impossible as so much hype was placed upon his shoulders. Going into the game, many expected that Washington would be playing catch up which would give Griffin an opportunity to throw a decent amount of balls. Instead, it was Robert Griffin dictating the flow of the game while executing Kyle Shanahan’s play calling.
Griffin ended the game 19/26 for 320 yards, 2 touchdowns, and zero interceptions.
Skins fans need to remember though that this is only 1 game. There is a long season and long road ahead. The team needs to make improvements……..ah who am I kidding……ROBERT GRIFFIN III!!!!
Derek took a lot of criticism when he predicted the Skins would win this one. Looks like he has the last laugh now.
Each week we will be pumping out Redskins preview articles, and the following up with a quick post-game wrap and analyze a few of the categories.
So hopefully this will continue to be a happy article segment each Monday.
WHEN THE REDSKINS Had THE BALL
Washington needed to establish the running game early to control the clock. They managed to do this in the first quarter, but it was short, quick passes that was essentially their running game early on. A series of quick screens and dump passes kept the chains methodically moving for the Redskins, and kept the Saints explosive offense on the sideline watching.
The ground game did get going, as rookie Alfred Morris finished with 96 rushing yards and two touchdowns. Griffin finished second on the team in both carries (10) and yards (42).
Washington’s offense was by far their best defense. The Skins dominated the time of possession, staying on the field for 39:10 as opposed to 20:50 for the Saints.
WHEN THE SAINTS had THE BALL
Going into the game, pressure was going to be key for the Redskins to try and slow Drew Brees and company down. Sacks were registered by DeAngelo Hall and Ryan Kerrigan, and the defense as a whole did a very good job applying pressure on Brees. There were several batted balls at the line of scrimmage and plenty of rushed throws.
The linebacker core, London Fletcher included, had a tough time stopping Jimmy Graham in the first half, but it seemed like they game planned around him in the second.
The secondary actually made a few plays, but still looked like a unit that is going to give up big plays. Can we get a do-over for Madieu Williams?
Redskins Offensive Line vs. Saints Defensive Line
The O-line, combined with Kyle Shanahan’s play calling, actually did a very good job protecting the QB. Take away a few bobbles and sloppy looking ball exchanges and they get an A for the day. There will be other teams with much more aggressive D-lines, but for a unit that has been heavily criticized, they performed very well for one week.
Robert Griffin III vs. Himself
We may not have known what to expect out of Griffin game one, but we surely do now. If it was Robert Griffin III vs himself, he clearly won.
Redskins player of the game
OFFENSE: Robert Griffin III
This was really a no-brainer here. Alfred Morris looked pretty steady, Billy Cundiff was aweseome (no chance a kicker gets it), and Pierre Garcon was dominant in the 1st quarter. But without question, the offensive player of the game was rookie super star Robert Griffin III. Imagine what his number would have looked like if Garcon stuck around a little longer.
DEFENSE: Stephen Bowen
Gotta give it to my man Bowen this time. He may not have shown up in the box score as much as other, but he was all over the place and constantly pushing the Saints offensive line back. He applied loads of pressure and seemed like he batted down 20 passes.
Washington travels to St. Louis to take on the Rams at 4:05 PM on Sunday, 9/16.