The Washington Redskins saw mixed results from their special teams units Sunday. They missed a field goal in the first quarter but managed to block a Giants field goal attempt in the fourth quarter.
Washington place kicker Graham Gano entered the preseason fighting for a roster spot. But he locked down the job with a perfect 10-for-10 field goal performance in four preseason games. On his first attempt of the regular season, though, his 39-yard attempt sailed wide right. It was his only field goal try of the day.
The Giants also had only one attempt — Lawrence Tynes’s 39-yarder early in the fourth. At the time, New York trailed by only seven points and the field goal could’ve made the final quarter a nail-biter.
But the Redskins got big pressure off the snap. Brian Orakpo threw a hand in the air and blocked the kick.
“I barely jumped because we were so deep into the offensive line that anybody coulde’ve put their hand up,” Orakpo said. “I just happened to be the lucky one.”
Orakpo said he couldn’t remember the last time he blocked a kick.
The Redskins also fared well on punts and kicks. Their average starting field position Sunday was their own 30-yard line. The Giants’ average starting field position was the New York 23.
Brandon Banks returned four punts for a total of 53 yards, including a 25-yarder. He returned two kickoffs for 24 yards each.
The Giants relied on former Redskin Devin Thomas returning kicks. He had only one opportunity and returned it 21 yards.