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Redskins @ Falcons – Fourth Quarter Thoughts

Posted by Matt Terl on November 8, 2009 – 4:23 pm

The good news first this time: the Redskins actually found a recipe for some success, a combination of quick passes and slashing runs, and also showed some actual heart and determination to make this into a real ballgame. Ladell Betts was finding holes that Clinton Portis has been slow to get to, and Jason Campbell looked sharp again finishing off a second long scoring drive with a pass to Todd Yoder in the back of the end zone.

It felt, for the first time in a long time, like the Redskins were a cohesive football team and a legitimate threat to move the ball as needed.
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Redskins @ Falcons – Third Quarter Thoughts

Posted by Matt Terl on November 8, 2009 – 3:11 pm

Well, that was completely unexpected. After a day of such staggering frustration that experienced beat writers were shouting about how “epic” the failure of the first half was, the Redskins took the second-half kickoff and marched downfield on an 80-yard, 7:50 drive for a touchdown, then held the Falcons to a three-and-out — on a perfectly-executed third down tackle by LaRon Landry — and then started another downfield march.

I have no clue what happened at halftime. Maybe someone gave a fiery speech. Maybe someone kicked a chair across the room. Maybe the offensive philosophy changed, or something in the playcalling. But this looks like a totally different team, and I’m pretty much stunned speechless. Read more »

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Redskins @ Falcons – Second Quarter Thoughts

Posted by Matt Terl on November 8, 2009 – 2:43 pm

Every so often as this depressing season has rolled along, someone in the building will say something like, “It can’t get much worse than” whatever the most recent debacle is. And yet somehow it always does. The first half of this game featured the Redskins offensive line giving up a Falcons record for sacks in a half (five), injuries to Clinton Portis and Jason Campbell, and a shoving match that came on the heels of a late hit to the Falcons quarterback.

At this point, I’m beginning to miss the days when my biggest complaints were questionable playcalling and the defense having trouble on third downs.

But, hey, let’s look at the (very few) positives.

  • Shaun Suisham stayed hot, kicking a 48-yarder. (Which really makes me wonder even more what was going on with the holding last year.) This also means the team isn’t being shut out.
  • Campbell survived the five sacks without actually getting killed.
  • Mike Sellers had a nice catch-and-run (although he made up for it by whiffing on a block on the next play).
  • And Brian Orakpo picked up two more sacks, giving him 5.5 on the season.

That’s it from what I recall.

In the first quarter, I said that being down 14 seemed like a positive; being down 21 does not. Read more »

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Redskins @ Falcons – First Quarter Thoughts

Posted by Matt Terl on November 8, 2009 – 1:41 pm

When was the last time I wrote an upbeat first quarter update? I miss those days. And sometimes there are, you know, non-terrible first quarters where there’s SOMETHING good to focus on. This is not one of those first quarters. The only good thing that happened was a Rocky McIntosh interception. That’s the positive. That’s it.

Other than that, the first play of the game was an offside penalty against Albert Haynesworth. The defense gave away two first downs with two more offside penalties, these on fourth down; one of those led directly to a Falcons touchdown. Jason Campbell put a ball a little high, it bounced off of Fred Davis, and was intercepted by Tye Hill for a touchdown. Clinton Portis went down after a brutal shot to the head and got pulled out of the game, meaning that three of the team’s four Pro Bowl players from last year are now out — Mike Sellers needs to keep his head on a swivel.

In fact, everything went so badly that ONLY being down 14 after one quarter seems like a gift. This could be a very long day. Read more »

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Sunday, November 8: Follow Redskins @ Falcons On Twitter, Etc.

Posted by Matt Terl on November 8, 2009 – 11:12 am

After the longest wait for an elevator I’ve ever experienced, I finally made it to the bus and subsequently to the Georgia Dome. I’m embarrassed to admit that I’m finding myself fond of domed stadiums, which is not something that I would’ve expected. They’re kind to the Redskins, too; as Gary Fitzgerald of Redskins.com notes, the team is 7-3 indoors since 2003.

I’ll be twittering throughout the game, so follow along with that. As always, for those of you who don’t use Twitter, follow on the Twackle module below for Twitter updates from me (@redskinsblog), Gary (@redskinsdotcom), and Larry Weisman (@LarryWeisman). Offer your thoughts either with the gold colored respond button on the module, or in the comments section right here.

Also, returning for its second outing is Redskins Gametime — virtually ALL the Redskins-related gamenight content (including my stff) in one handy interface. AND, if you’re into complete and utter sensory overload, the Redskins Powerboard is still going strong.

After the insane drama of the last two weeks, kickoff for this game can’t come soon enough, honestly.

http://www.twackle.com/widget/generate_widget/redskins Read more »

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