Robert Griffin III and the Redskins needed only one victory to get back in the thick of the NFC East race (Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press)

The oh-so-forgiving nature of the NFC East race continues to benefit the Washington Redskins. After getting their first victory of the season Sunday in Oakland, they could talk not only about breaking into the win column, but also about being immediately back in the thick of the race in the once-proud division.

“Nobody wants to be at 1-3 four weeks into the season, don’t get me wrong,” quarterback Robert Griffin III said after the 24-14 triumph over the Raiders. “But we have to make the best of our situation. It’s a good situation for us right now, seeing the way our division’s played out. If we come back after the bye and get a win, we’re right back in first place, second place in the division and that’s a great scenario. All you have to do is win your division and you get in the playoffs. And that’ll be our focus moving ahead. We’ve just got to keep winning games and keep ourselves in a good situation to make the playoffs.”

The Redskins, at 1-3, are tied with the Philadelphia Eagles for second place, a game behind the Dallas Cowboys, who lead the division at 2-2. The New York Giants are in last place at 0-4. The Cowboys, Eagles and Giants lost Sunday by a combined 65-point margin.

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“You’ve got to find a way to win when you’re 0-3,” Redskins Coach Mike Shanahan said. “A three-game losing streak is not a lot of fun for anybody. So to come here and get a win before the bye week, get a little bit healthy, it’ll be a big plus for us, especially with everybody losing in the division. You feel like you might have gained a little bit of momentum. But we can’t worry about them. We’ve got to worry about ourselves and start playing some really good football.”

The Redskins play at Dallas on Oct. 13 and they could be playing for at least a share of first place. The Cowboys face the unbeaten Denver Broncos next weekend. The Eagles and Giants play on Sunday while the Redskins are idle.

Have a Redskins question? E-mail Mike Jones at with the subject line “Mailbag question” for him to answer it in The Mailbag on Tuesday.

More on the Redskins and NFL:

The Takeaway: The D earns an A | Wise: It wasn’t pretty, but it was needed

Griffin uses grit to get it done | Amerson’s interception was the spark

Morris has bruised ribs | Redskins make use of no-huddle

Punt protection issue resurfaces | Vets: ‘It’s just one win’ | Photos from Oakland

D.C. Sports Bog: Best and worst from Redskins at Raiders

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