The Redskins and Dolphins combined for 46 total yards, six punts, three first downs and zero points in a miserable first quarter, after which the possibility of the game finishing in the NFL’s first 0-0 tie since Nov. 7, 1943, seemed like a real possibility. Washington went three-and-out on its first three possessions and didn’t record a first down until its first play of the second quarter.
Hail: Shaun Dion Hamilton
Safety Landon Collins had the best game for the Redskins’ defense, with 12 tackles, two passes defended, a sack, a forced fumble and a near interception, but Hamilton was responsible for the best play. Midway through the third quarter, after the Redskins took a 14-3 lead on McLaurin’s second touchdown catch, Hamilton anticipated a Josh Rosen pass intended for wide receiver Isaiah Ford and made a diving interception. The pick, which was more impressive than any of Washington’s 13 receptions, was the Redskins’ second of the day and seventh of the season. The team had 15 interceptions all of last year.
There are two types of Redskins fans: Those who look at Sunday’s result, coupled with the Cowboys’ surprising loss to the Jets, and think, “Wow, we’re only two games out of the NFC East lead,” and those who look at Sunday’s result, coupled with the Bengals’ expected loss to the Ravens and think, “Darn, we’re now a game out of the lead for the No. 1 pick.” If you’re in the latter camp, Sunday’s win felt more like a loss.
The 34-year-old running back proved he’s still got it, at least against the league’s worst rushing defense. Peterson finished with 23 carries for 118 yards, 60 of which came on one touchdown drive in the second quarter. Interim coach Bill Callahan said last week that the Redskins would look to establish the run against the Dolphins, and Peterson did his part to make that game plan look smart. “I take my hat off to the offensive line and receivers, they did a great job, tight ends they played outstanding and really got this offensive running game going,” Peterson told NFL Network’s Deion Sanders after his best game of the season. “That’s what we needed, man.”
Remember when the Redskins were rumored to be the favorites to land Rosen in a pre-draft trade with the Cardinals earlier this year? Washington should consider itself lucky that a deal never came to fruition. After Arizona drafted Kyler Murray with the No. 1 pick this year, Rosen was dealt to the Dolphins. Coach Brian Flores said last week that Rosen, the No. 10 overall pick in the 2018 draft, would be his team’s starter for the remainder of the season, and if Miami’s goal is to finish 0-16, there’s not a better man for the job. Rosen was dreadful on Sunday, completing 15 of 25 passes for 85 yards and throwing two interceptions. By the fourth quarter, Flores decided he had seen enough, and benched Rosen in favor of Ryan Fitzpatrick. Afterward, Flores said Rosen will continue to start, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he’ll finish. Asked whether he thought his coach was going back on his promise, Rosen replied, “It’s above my pay grade."
Hail: Redskins Fans in Miami
The 76-year-old Redskins who paid $1,600 to fly a “Fire Bruce Allen” banner over Hard Rock Stadium for two hours before Sunday’s game told me there was almost as much burgundy and gold in the stands as aqua and orange. Several Redskins fans wore paper bags over their heads and wore T-shirts or carried signs expressing their displeasure with team owner Daniel Snyder. The Best Dressed Fan award goes to the guy in the Nationals jersey, who can be seen preparing to celebrate McLaurin’s second touchdown catch in the photo at the top of this post.
Fail: The Mike Tomlin Rumors
CBS’s Jason La Canfora reported Sunday that the Redskins are expected to make a strong push to acquire Steelers Coach Mike Tomlin. Don’t count on it. “That is so far-fetched,” a source close to the situation told ESPN’s Adam Schefter. “It’s so far out there. It would have to be a deal that the league never has seen before and would change the way business is done in football, and I don’t see that happening.” Tomlin looked plenty happy on Sunday night, as rookie Devlin “Duck” Hodges led the Steelers to a win over the Chargers in his first career start.
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