The obvious advantage of winning the opening coin toss and deferring to the second half is getting the kickoff that starts the third quarter.
That’s exactly what happened for the Redskins in the third quarter of today’s game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Though the Redskins were unable to score on that first drive of the second half, they were able to continue to milk time off the game clock with the 15-point lead.
The Washington defense, meanwhile, remained stout against one of the least potent offenses in the league.
But the Buccaneers just won’t go away, and got a late touchdown from Josh Freeman to Vincent Jackson, and, heading into the fourth quarter, the Redskins lead the Buccaneers, 21-13.
After an eventful first two quarters, the Redskins’ offense couldn’t get going much in the third quarter. On their second drive of the period, wide receiver Pierre Garcon was handed two 15-yard penalties — one for pass interference and the other for unnecessary roughness — which gave his team improbable 3rd and long situations.
The Redskins’ secondary — which had struggled the past two weeks in losses to St. Louis and Cincinnati — had been able to avoid the big play today up until the 3:45 mark in the third quarter, when quarterback Freeman found Mike Williams wide open for a 65-yard pass-and-catch to the Washington 20-yard line.
After a neutral-zone infraction on the Redskins, running back LeGarrette Blount plowed ahead for a first-down to the nine-yard line. Two plays later, the Buccaneers faced a 3rd and 7 when Freeman dropped back and found receiver Jackson — in double coverage — for a the 7-yard touchdown strike. After the extra point, the Redskins lead had been whittled down to eight points.
The Redskins began their next drive by pounding the ball with Morris, who eclipsed the 100-yard rushing mark on the second play with an 8-yard rush to the right. A couple plays later, on the final play of the quarter, the Redskins broke open their bag of tricks as Brandon Banks got the ball and passed back to Griffin III who found Niles Paul for a 30-yard gain.
It was a huge momentum booster heading into the fourth quarter.
Tags: 2012 regular season, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, washington redskins
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