Posted December 31, 2012 on
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Robert Griffin III
New York Giants
Robert Griffin III and Alfred Morris needed only four months to put the Washington Redskins in a place they haven't been this millennium - on top of the NFC East.
Led by a pair of rookies serenaded loudly and lovingly as ''R-G-3!'' and ''Al-fred Mor-ris!,'' the Redskins claimed their first division title since 1999, beating the archrival Dallas Cowboys 28-18 Sunday night in a winner-take-all finale to end the NFL's regular season.
First-round pick Griffin ran for 63 yards and a touchdown, and Morris - the out-of-nowhere sixth-rounder from Florida Atlantic - ran for 200 and three scores. He set the franchise single-season rushing record for the Redskins (10-6), who revived the season behind their quarterback's talent and leadership to win seven straight after their bye week. They are the first NFL team to rally from 3-6 to make the playoffs since the Jacksonville Jaguars in 1996.
Washington will host the Seattle Seahawks next Sunday, the Redskins' third consecutive playoff game against the Seahawks. They lost at Seattle in the 2005 and 2007.
The Cowboys (8-8), meanwhile, will miss the playoffs for the third straight season, having stumbled in a make-or-break end-of-regular-season game for the third time in five years.
Tony Romo threw three interceptions - matching his total from the last eight games combined. A poor throw was picked by Rob Jackson when the Cowboys had a chance to drive for a winning score in the final minutes.
Romo almost became the first Dallas quarterback to throw for 5,000 yards in a season, but his career is instead further tainted by post-Christmas disappointments. He also had Week 17 losses to the Philadelphia Eagles (44-6) in 2008 and the New York Giants (31-14) last year, as well as his 1-3 record in playoff games.
Morris finished with 1,613 yards, topping Clinton Portis' 1,516 in 2005. He was especially dominant in the Redskins' go-ahead drive in the third quarter, when six plays were runs by Morris and the other three involved fake handoffs to him. The touchdown came when Griffin faked to Morris - one of several times linebacker DeMarcus Ware was totally fooled by deception in the backfield - and ran 10 yards around the left end. It put Washington ahead 14-7 in the third quarter.
The Cowboys answered with a field goal early in the fourth, but Morris' 32-yard scamper gave the Redskins a 21-10 cushion with 10:32 to play.
Trying to play catch-up, Dallas pulled within three on a 10-yard pass to Kevin Ogletree and a 2-point conversion with 5:50 to play. But Morris' third touchdown, a 1-yard run with 1:09 left, sealed the win.
Playing against a defense missing its five best run defenders, the Redskins didn't need Griffin to throw much. He completed just 9 of 18 passes for 100 yards.
The Redskins were calling designed runs for Griffin as a regular part of the game plan for the first time since he sprained his right knee four weeks ago. He lacked the explosiveness he showed earlier in the season, perhaps hampered by his big brace, but he was still a running threat.
Romo completed 20 of 31 passes for 218 yards.
The Cowboys also dealt with in-game injuries to receivers Miles Austin (left ankle) and Dez Bryant (back). Bryant, who had a torrid second half of the season despite breaking his left index finger, had four catches for 71 yards.
The Redskins also set a franchise record for fewest turnovers in a season with 14, fewer even than the 1982 team that played only nine regular-season games because of a players strike.
Washington's slow start this season prompted coach Mike Shanahan to dismiss playoff hopes and declare the remaining seven games would determine which players would be on his team ''for years to come.''
Griffin and his teammates had other plans, and the coach quickly changed his tune. Now the Redskins are in the postseason for the first time since a wild-card berth under Hall of Fame coach Joe Gibbs in 2007.
BEST OF MAXIM
Following another disappointing season, the Dallas Cowboys
should part ways with quarterback Tony Romo this offseason, according to Gil Brandt of NFL.com.
Everybody says they don't read the paper, they don't listen
to the radio or watch TV, but I don't think that's true. I think they do. When
everybody in Cowboys Nation is saying that Dallas has to get rid of Romo...
Cowboys QB Tony Romo probably didn't sleep too well on Sunday night. His interception with three minutes to go in the fourth quarter set up a Redskins touchdown and may have cost Dallas the game.Fantasy Spin:This isn't the first time we've seen Romo fold under pressure. The Dallas quarterback is now 1-6 all-time in elimination games. He finished the night with two touchdowns...
Brandon George of the Dallas Morning News writes that Cowboys’ plans to re-sign QB Tony Romo to a long-term contract extension “hasn’t changed” with last weekends loss to the Washington Redskins.
“We have a great belief of Tony Romo as our quarterback,” said head coach Jason Garrett on Tuesday. “We all know that we want to take the next step, and Tony is going...
Tony Romo had a great December until it was time to change his narrative. Three picks when he could have finally made something else of himself than a choking clownfraud. A streak of wins that would have at last instilled him in the minds of fans as something other than an abject failure when it counts. But is was all for naught.
Good night, sweet price of Derpmania.
The post Romo...
According to ESPNDallas.com, during Sunday night’s loss to the Redskins, Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo suffered a crack rib on his right side after being hit by Redskins’ cornerback Josh Wilson in the second quarter.
Well the good news is that the season is over and Romo will have some time to get healthy and have another crack at the playoffs next season.
On the legs of Alfred Morris, Skins claim first NFC East title since 1999. [Boz]
Morris stat line: 33 carries, 200 yards, three TDs. Workhorse. [CSNW]
Playing second fiddle for perhaps first time ever, RGIII delivered. [USAT]
Redskins’ Haslett calls great game, including blitz in 4th quarter. [Insider]
Skins host Seattle next Sunday at 4:30 in Wild Card playoff game. Yep. [RR]...
Tonight, the Redskins hosted the Dallas Cowboys in a de-facto NFC East championship game, and the Robert Griffin III led team ground out a a victory, their seventh straight, to win the division for the first time since 1999.
The Redskins didn't throw the ball all over the field, but Griffin was efficient when he was called on to throw. Alfred Morris led the Redskins'...
Tony Romo’s third interception against the Redskins cost the Cowboys a chance to win the game and reach the playoffs.
Roger Staubach led the Cowboys to two Super Bowls. He capped off his great career by leading the Cowboys to a win over Washington after trailing 34-21 in the fourth quarter in a regular-season finale with the NFC East on the line.
Tony Romo has led the Cowboys...
Tony Romo went full Romo for most of first quarter, derping out two Romoceptions, twice as many as he’d thrown the rest of December. The first of which he overthrew Kevin Ogletree then proceeded to berate Ogletree for it, LIKE A TRUE LEADER. But the Redskins could not take advantage. Kai Forbath doinked one off an upright. The pistol offense and the read option were actually things...
Captain Comeback Scott Kacsmar sums up the 2012 NFL season in clutch wins with a review of all 32 teams. In Week 17, Tony Romo blew it, while the Vikings stunned Green Bay. Also: the “Drive of the Year.”
At my fantasy drafts back in August and September, whenever someone was hemming and hawing over who to pick, I often rather arrogantly shouted out “Alfred Morris is still available.” I generally was rewarded for my trash talk with some confusion, a couple of guffaws (unless it was the seventh or eighth time I brought up his name) or perhaps some ridicule. The drafter would usually...
Now that the fake football season has come to an end, the team here at the Fix chimes in with our annual “End of Season Awards”
In part one, we looked at the biggest bust, waiver wire pickup of the year, biggest injury and “Mr. Reliable.”
Here in part two, we will name the “biggest tease”, “rookie of the year”, “MVP” and an early top ten for 2013.
LANDOVER, Md. -- "R-G-3!" was all Redskins fans needed to chant when they wanted to express their love for Robert Griffin III. For the lesser-known rookie, they opted for his whole name: "Al-fred Mor-ris!"
I've been a Redskins for most of my 37 years on Earth. I started rooting for them as a 7 year old and haven't stopped. Needless to say that I was a bit giddy watching my Redskins win the NFC East for the first time since 1999 ... when I was a young newlywed all of 24 years old.My wife got me a Griffin III jersey for Christmas. She also got my 5 month old son and almost...