Well, that happened. No one on the Washington Redskins saw this 0-3 start coming, quarterback Robert Griffin III says, and now they have no choice but to try to dig themselves out of this hole.
They’ll have the chance next week against the Raiders on the hard turf in Oakland. After that, they’ll have a bye week in which to consider their plight.
The best news for the Redskins? Every team in their division stinks, except for one. And the Redskins will play that team, the Dallas Cowboys, after the bye.
Thanks for joining us again…we’ll see you back here next Sunday.
Sunday’s highlights: DeAngelo Hall returns interception for touchdown
Quick hits from Robert Griffin III’s press conference:
“Nobody is going to feel sorry for us at 0-3.”
“If you told us we’d be 0-3, we’d all be shocked. Sometimes you’ve got to have that wake-up call. … It’s time for us to dig even deeper and to win football games.”
“We lost the game on two judgment calls.”
RGIII notes the similarities to being 3-6 a year ago. “[It] sucks.”
On his slide/fumble:
“I was trying to declare myself down, avoid the big hit from the safeties coming from the middle, knee down, elbow down. But it’s the rule. It can be a sucky rule, but it’s still one of the NFL rules. … I’ve just got to make sure that if I dive forward, I hold onto the ball and if I slide, feet first and then it’s not a fumble.”
Excerpts from Mike Shanahan’s press conference:
“I told our team I was proud of the way we fought. But we’ve got to clean up some of those mistakes.”
As for being 0-3:
“You find out how tough you are. There’s nothing you can go about it except go back, be tough on yourself and try to eliminate mistakes. That’s what our football team will do. We’ll come back, be tough on ourselves. Everybody’s disappointed, especially when you lose a game like that at home, with the type of fans that you’ve got.”
On RGIII’s head-first slide and fumble:
“To be honest with you, that’s something that happens. He was sliding forward and all of a sudden things like that [fumble] happen. … I’ve seen it happen to a lot of different people. He’ll work on it and hopefully have a little bit more ball security when he gets put in that situation. Probably next time he’ll do a normal slide instead of head first.”
Yes, RGIII ran more today than he had so far this season. Just not much more.
Given his running-heavy rhetoric this week, six rushes for 37 yards — just one more carry than he had in week one — didn’t seem to constitute much of a shift in mentality.
But whereas Washington had been conservative with the read option through the first few games, Kyle Shanahan showed more confidence in his quarterback’s ability to execute with both his legs and his arm: the Redskins ran the option nine times Sunday after using it just nine times in the first two weeks.
Save the 21 yard scramble-to-lost-fumble in the fourth quarter, Griffin struggled to evade pressure, looking a step slow as the pocket collapsed around him early. But in that fourth, Griffin scrambled slightly more successfully, getting a step on defenders in pursuit and creating enough separation to throw the ball away and even record a completion on the run to Santana Moss.
The Redskins did not run any run plays for Griffin, but showed no reluctance to call for roll outs, which they did on several occasions. Ultimately, it was Griffin’s turnovers that killed him and the Redskins Sunday, and both of those turnovers — an interception thrown on the run and a fumble after his longest run of the day — came when Griffin abandoned the pocket.
Here they are: your best comments of the day, as voted by the likes of your peers (those honored after the first half are ineligible). Enjoy…
“Tell me how Danny Smith was such a bad ST coach, please” (4 likes)
“2 stops in a row!
2 stops in a row!
2 stops in a row!
2 stops in a row!
2 stops in a row!
2 stops in a row!” (3 likes)
hail_to_the_bg: “Good ‘ole gang tackling…how I’ve missed thee” (3 likes)
“To all Skins fans:
0-3″ (3 likes)
After taking an early 7-0 lead on DeAngelo Hall’s interception return, the Redskins dropped to 0-3 for the first time since 2001 after giving up 441 yards of total offense to Detroit. Robert Griffin III finished with 326 yards on 32-of-50 passing with no touchdowns and an interception. Alfred Morris had 73 yards an a touchdown on 15 carries.
Washington starts at its 20, has no timeouts and needs a touchdown to tie.
The Redskins attempted an onside kick, but Niles Paul’s recovery was no good after officials called Washington for illegal touching when the ball did not travel the required 10 yards.
The Redskins fail to score from the 3 but get a 21-yard field goal by John Potter to trim the deficit to 27-20 with 1:40 left in regulation.
Down 27-17, the Redskins have first and goal from the 3 after Roy Helu Jr.’s 15-yard catch and run. Clock is stopped for the two-minute warning.
Washington is moving down the field, but with 2:36 left in regulation, the Redskins need more big plays, not check downs. It didn’t help that Robert Griffin III was called for encroachment by causing the defense to jump offside with a hard count.
Redskins have the ball at their 25 with just over three minutes to play. They have two timeouts remaining and are seeking to avoid their first 0-3 start since 2001.
Calvin Johnson has a 10-yard touchdown reception in front of DeAngelo Hall on a slant pattern to the middle of the end zone. Brandon Meriweather tried to help but was late arriving. Lions take 27-17 lead with 3:54 to play.
Matthew Stafford sneaks for a first down to the Redskins 10. On the previous play, Joique Bell appeared to have enough for a first down on a dive, but officials spotted the ball just short of the marker.
Aldrick Robinson’s 57-yard touchdown catch is overturned after replays showed the ball coming loose after he hit the ground. Lions still lead, 20-17.
Robert Griffin III completes a 57-yard touchdown pass to Aldrick Robinson over the middle for a 23-20 lead pending the extra point. Robinson was able to get open on a play-action fake and got behind cornerback Rashean Mathis for the catch.
I <3 WashingtonPost Commentators:
“remember when the redskins had a good returner yeah me neither”
“Tell me how Danny Smith was such a bad ST coach again, please”
“Is there a rule option that says we suck at kick return so just give it to us on the 20?”
Also, Chris Thompson has struggled returning punts.
Captain Obvious believes the Redskins could use a good return specialist.
David Akers kicks a 28-yard field goal to give the Lions a20-17 lead with 11:08 left in regulation. The Redskins defense held three times from their 10-yard line.
The Lions got a big play when Matthew Stafford completed a 47-yard pass to Nate Burleson. First and goal for the Lions.
Robert Griffin III takes off for a 25-yard run but lost the ball as he dove, giving the Lions the ball a their 25. It’s the second turnover of the game for Griffin, who also threw an interception.
Robert Griffin III threw perhaps his best pass of the game, completing a 17-yard out to Pierre Garcon on third down. Redskins have the ball at their 39.
Seems odd for the home team in a tied game, but are you going to question pro-football-reference’s math?
The ‘Skins started their first drive of the second half with three straight option reads. Griffin kept on the first, threw on the second, and handed off to Alfred Morris on the third. Washington abandoned the option for the remainder of that drive, which saw Griffin roll out successfully, but have trouble evading pressure
All told, Griffin’s now run twice in the game, run the read option eight times, and rolled out five times.
The Redskins are tied with the Lions at 17 at the end of the third quarter. Robert Griffin III is 19 for 28 with 182 yards and an interception. Matthew Stafford is 20 of 34 for 260 yards and one touchdown and one interception.
The Redskins fail again on third down with Robert Griffin III having throw a check-down pass to Jordan Reed that was well short of the marker. On the plus side, punter Sav Rocca is having himself a day, including his last kick for 63 yards.
From the CBS Sports halftime show:
“I think Dr. Bradley from Pittsburgh used to say it takes a full year to recover from an ACL, and a lot of it is mental. Physically he is probably able to be out there, but mentally, it has some anxiety … I know RGIII can play better, but he’s going to have to work through this. This is his first two games. Let’s not forget the reason for where they are, it’s this defense. It is atrocious. “
Here’s the link to view it: http://cbsprt.co/1gPzA9S
Robert Griffin III took a second sack, and on the play, it appeared clear his knee is not close to 100 percent. Lions DT Ndamukong Suh broke through the line of scrimmage, and Griffin III turned to try to get away but was unable to do so. That was a play last season where Griffin would have been able at least to avoid the sack if not gaining yards by scrambling.
Lions DT C.J. Mosley is called for a facemask penalty on Alfred Morris, moving the Redskins to their 43-yard line. Mosley’s hand got caught on the bottom of Morris’s helmet, which came off as he was going to the ground.
Although I feel like this would be a pretty big story:
Your most-liked comments of the first half:
svxcountry1: “Hochuli making up calls to show off his guns“ (5 likes)
alex35332: “Rack is starting to come back” (4 likes)
hail_to_the_bg: “Lions have no idea what’s coming. We’re a 2nd-half team. We’re used to the score being 31-0 at this point.” (3 likes)
WaitingGuilty: “Breaking news! Brandon Meriweather has completed an entire half of football” (3 likes)
NosferatusCoffin: “Reed is going to be a real good one.” (3 likes)
bostskin: “I’m seeing improvement.”
The Redskins got a 43-yard field goal from John Potter to tie the game at 17 with 12:14 left in the first quarter. Washington began the second half with the ball at its 40 but was forced to try a field goal after Robert Griffin III’s pass to Leonard Hankerson on third down went incomplete.
Redskins begin the second half with the ball at the 40-yard line following a Lions penalty on the kickoff.
With the first half in the books, RGIII’s promise to run more hasn’t exactly come to fruition. But the Redskins’ play calls moved Griffin around more than they did in the first few weeks.
The Redskins ran the zone option five times, with Griffin keeping it just once for his only rush of the game so far. He rolled out on four of 35 plays and scrambled three times. Griffin completed a pass on the run, and threw an interception while scrambling.
In conclusion, RGIII ran the ball one time in the first half. Discuss.
A quick look-in at games involving other NFC East teams:
Eli Manning has been sacked six — six! — times in the first half and the New York Giants trail Carolina 17-0 at halftime.
Dallas leads the St. Louis Rams 24-0 in the third quarter.
The Redskins offense has made some progress, but the old Robert Griffin III has yet to emerge. He ran once in the first half, but the read option hasn’t been a factor. Defensively, Washington has been bending but was able to stay in the game thanks to DeAngelo Hall’s interception. Still, the Lions have gained 258 total yards, and it just feels like they’re ready to break it open in the second half.
The Redskins give up a late field goal in the second quarter and trail the Lions, 17-14, at halftime. Robert Griffin III is 14 for 20 with 120 yards and an interception. The Lions’ Matthew Stafford is 15 of 25 for 228 yards with one touchdown and one interception.
David Akers boots a 32-yard field goal with 44 left until halftime gives the Lions a 17-14 lead. The Redskins held the Lions on third down, forcing Matthew Stafford to throw long on a pass intended for Calvin Johnson in the back of the end zone.
The Redskins and Lions are tied at 14 at the two-minute warning in the first half. Washington is closing the gap in total yards with 178 to 207 for Detroit and have outgained the Lions in rushing, 73-37.
There isn’t much to be thrilled about, but the third-round rookie tight end is causing a stir:
Lions defensive end Jason Jones was taken off on a cart after suffering what appeared to be a right knee injury on routine play.
A few moments earlier, defensive tackle Nick Fairley had limped off the field, but he returned after a few plays.
Robert Griffin III completes a 12-yard pass to Joshua Morgan for a first down. Skins are at their 47 with five minutes to go until halftime.
Penalties are having an effect:
After a holding penalty on LT Trent Williams pushed the Skins back 10 yards, tight end Jordan Reed catches a pass for 11 yards to set up Washington with a manageable third and nine. Robert Griffin III is 10 for 15 with 75 yards and an interception.
Ryan Kerrigan tackles backup tight end Tony Scheffler short of the first down, forcing the Lions to punt. Nice stand by the Skins defense after Robert Griffin III’s interception.
Robert Griffin III is intercepted by Chris Houston on a pass intended for Pierre Garcon. Skins drive stalls at the Lions 30.
The Redskins running and passing out of read-option looks, and attacking the Lions’s soft coverage on the perimeter on this drive.
Of course, as soon as they get going …
Alfred Morris takes a toss and cuts it back for 10 yards to the Lions 15, but a penalty for illegal procedure nullifies the gain and pushes back the Skins five yards to the 30. Skins have committed three penalties for a loss of 25 yards.
Out of the read option, Robert Griffin III completes a first-down pass to Logan Paulsen for 13 yards. That’s the third first down of the series for the Skins, who are at the Lions 25.
More photos here:
Stat update via Fox sports: On their two touchdown drives, the Lions have averaged over nine yards per play.
That is all.
Matthew Stafford was backing up on his throw that was high, but Joseph Fauria was able to leap between a Brian Orakpo and Brandon Meriweather for the touchdown catch. The Lions are averaging more than nine yards per play on each of their scoring drives.
The Redskins defense is just high comedy. Nobody wants to tackle, nobody wants to cover, it’s dare I say, Lions-esque.
— World of Isaac (@WorldofIsaac) September 22, 2013
— Dan Alpher (@D_Alpher) September 22, 2013
I’m glad that Jim Haslett has a much better perspective from way up there of his defense’s inability to tackle anyone, ever. #Redskins
— chad dukes (@chaddukes) September 22, 2013
Matthew Stafford completes a five-yard touchdown pass to backup tight end Joseph Fauria with 14:47 left until halftime.
Robert Griffin III says he’s ready to run, a well-documented potential change in approach Redskins nation hopes can revive the versatile version of RGIII, dispose of run-shy Robert, and save the Redskins’ season.
So no pressure, really.
Anyway, as has been well-documented, Griffin’s ground game has all but evaporated so far this season, changing the Redskins’ 2012 staple read option into more of a “read-and-hand-the-ball-to-Alfred-Morris.” We’re tracking to see how much Griffin sticks to his word and commits to the run.
First Quarter Report:
Shanahan only called for the read option one time in 10 first quarter plays. Griffin opted to run on that play, looking confident as he charged towards the sideline and out of bounds for seven yards.
Griffin now has as many option keeps in this game as he had in the first two games this season.
But the Lions are on the move behind a potent passing attack in which Matthew Stafford has thrown to three wide receivers, including Ryan Broyles and Nate Burleson. Lions will have the ball at the Skins 5.
Brian Orakpo passed his concussion tests and has returned to the field.
Dan Steinberg offers evident of just how Orakpo was shaken up. Yes, Brandon Meriweather and his helmet are involved.
Matthew Stafford has looked toward wide receivers covered by Skins rookie CB Dave Amerson. Lions tried a short slant to Nate Burleson that fell incomplete with Amerson in coverage.
Another wasted possession for the Skins, who have to punt again.
Brian Orakpo apparently knocked helmets with Brandon Meriweather and was rendered woozy on the play.
While he was examined for concussion symptoms on the sideline, he was replaced by Darryl Tapp as the Lions completed their touchdown drive.
And, yes, it would appear that Meriweather has now smacked helmets with and given a concussion to an opponent, a teammate and himself.
In place of your weekly Kevin-Durant-watching-the-Redskins-watch, we have another Kevin — Wizards’ center Kevin Seraphin — at FedEx field for the game.
Washington has run 14 plays to seven for Detroit and has nearly a two-to-one advantage in time of possession. Skins have 80 total yards to 29 for the Lions.
The Lions are moving Calvin Johnson inside to avoid coverage by DeAngelo Hall. Skins still providing help over the top though.
Skins give up a first down to the Lions after LB London Fletcher is called for holding. First and 10 for the Lions on the Skins 24.
Lions running back Joique Bell catches a short pass over the middle on third down and 10 before gaining 37 yards. Skins linebacker Perry Riley is then whistled for roughing the passer, tacking on another 15 yards. Lions first and 10 at the Skins 33.
Can someone wrap up when they tackle??? Give me a break!
— The Ball Hogs (@BallHogsRadio) September 22, 2013
I guess all those tackling exercises didnt work out too well for the Skins eh?
— ROCKDEEP WORLDWIDE (@RockyIParrish) September 22, 2013
Bacarri Rambo was injured on the kickoff and is on the sideline, getting treatment on his leg.
And the Redskins get thinner at an already thin position.
Most cornerbacks play well off of Calvin Johnson, but DeAngelo Hall jammed him at the line of scrimmage, threw him off his route a bit and was waiting for Matthew Stafford’s throw. Nice defense by Hall on the most physically intimidating wide receiver in the league.
DeAngelo Hall steps in front Calvin Johnson for an interception he returns 17 yards for a touchdown at 9:23 of the first quarter. Skins take 7-0 lead to match all the points they’ve scored in the previous two first halves.
That’s just a nice play by DeAngelo Hall all around. He’s on an island against Calvin Johnson all day. 7-0, Washington.
— Mike Wise (@MikeWiseguy) September 22, 2013
The vaunted doctor, the star he’s paid to keep healthy, and the guy who pays him to do it.
RGIII’s intended for Aldrick Robinson is incomplete on third down. Another opening drive with no points for the Skins.
Quarterback Robert Griffin III turns the corner on first down out of the read option, gets out of bounds after seven-yard gain. He showed some burst there.
Wide receiver Pierre Garcon gains 10 yards on an end around on first down followed by a nine-yard run by Alfred Morris. Looks like the Skins are going to be committed to the run today.
Matthew Stafford throws incomplete on third down. Skins were able to hurry Stafford on three drop backs during the opening series. They’ll need to continue to apply pressure to help ease the burden on the secondary covering Calvin Johnson.
Matthew Stafford completes 23-yard pass to wide open Calvin Johnson. DeAngelo Hall playing well off Megatron.
LB London Fletcher sacks Matthew Stafford on the Lions’ first snap. Second down and 17.
Reggie Bush is out today, so it’ll be running back by committee. First and 10 at the 20.
In case you missed this gem earlier this week, Ryan Kerrigan went undercover at Modell’s to sell his own jersey. Even if you’ve already seen it, watch it again. What else do you have to do before kickoff anyway…?
And here’s Kerrigan today, back at his regular day job:
“It’s 100 percent important, and it really affects accuracy, it affects everything he does,” the ex-quarterback said. “It actually probably puts a strain on his shoulder and his elbow as well. That’s why I wonder why is he even playing? I would not be playing him right now. I wouldn’t have played him last year in the playoff game.
“And I think the fact of the matter is, the young man has too much say in what’s going on right now,” Esiason said. “Somebody needs to tell him, you should not be playing. I know you want to be the Messiah of the Redskins, you want to be the next guy, the most important guy. But the fact of the matter is, you’re not ready to play. And they shouldn’t be playing him.”
NFL officials may not be the only ones tiring of Ndamukong Suh’s play.
According to Pro Football Talk, opposing players are also losing patience, with one unnamed saying:
“I’ll be interested to see how things go for him for the rest of the year.”
Suh was fined $100,000 recently for a low hit on Minnesota Vikings center John Sullivan and most likely faces suspension the next time he’s involved in a dirty play.
Kai Forbath heads the list of the Redskins’ inactives today, as reported earlier. He’s joined by Rex Grossman, Evan Royster, Jose Gumbs, Josh LeRibeus, Fred Davis and Chris Baker.
Brandon Meriweather is on the field and warming up.
He’s not on Sunday’s inactive list, and participated fully in practice Friday. Pending the emergence of any concussion-related symptoms or irresistible opportunities for head-on collisions in the course of his jogging and stretching (not necessarily a foregone conclusion with him…), we’ll see Meriweather today against the Lions.
Elsewhere in the NFC East, the Dallas Cowboys host the St. Louis Rams and the New York Giants play the Panthers in Carolina. Both games are at 1 p.m.
The Giants, like the Redskins, are looking for their first victory, but there’s some important history siding with New York’s 0-2 start.
Giants are the 3rd team in history to open 0-2 despite scoring in every quarter…the last time they started 0-2, they won the Super Bowl.
— FOX Sports: NFL (@NFLONFOX) September 22, 2013
The Detroit Lions won’t have Reggie Bush today at FedEx Field, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Bush had said Thursday that he was optimistic he could play after hurting his knee last Sunday against Arizona, but the team opted to rest him. That means Joique Bell will get more carries.
“Reggie’s a big part of that offense, and, of course, everyone knows that coming in that he’s a force to be reckoned with when he’s out there,” Bell said Thursday. “He’s a dominant player. His speed, his quickness, just his knowledge of the game. He’s a savvy player, and most important his leadership out on the field. But we on the team, we have to have guys step up and fill that void. I don’t know what’s going to happen this week, but whatever the situation may be, all of us have to be ready to step up.”
Welcome to today’s live blog discussing all aspects of today’s game between the Washington Redskins and Detroit Lions. Whether you’re following for game updates or seeking in-depth analysis during the game, this is the place to be.
To get you started, take a look at these stories: