Antwaan Randle El's 87-yard punt return for a touchdown gave the Redskins a first-half spark in their upset bid of the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday. It wasn't enough as the Redskins lost to the Colts 36-22 at the RCA Dome.
Late in the second quarter, Randle El fielded a punt by Hunter Smith at the Redskins' 13-yard line. He ran straight ahead, as special teams blockers opened up a huge hole up the middle of the field.
Randle El took advantage of the hole, bursting past a tackler into open field. The only player in the way of Randle El and a touchdown? The punter, Smith.
Randle El put a move on the slow-footed punter and dashed past him for an 87-yard touchdown return. The score gave Washington a 14-10 lead late in the first half.
It was Randle El's first touchdown return since he signed in Washington as a free agent last March.
Earlier in the game, Randle El had a 24-yard punt return, giving the Redskins' offense the ball at the Colts' 45-yard line. The play helped set up the Redskins' first scoring drive of the game, capped by a 13-yard scoring strike from Mark Brunell to Chris Cooley.
In four years with Pittsburgh, Randle El had four punt returns for touchdowns, including two last year, and one kickoff return for a touchdown.
For Randle El, it was a career-high in terms of return yardage. His previous high was an 84-yard return for the Steelers last year.
Randle El entered the game with a 6.5-yard punt return average, far below his career average of 11.8 yards per punt return.
The longest punt return in Redskins history was on Dec. 3, 1950, when Bill Dudley returned a punt 96 yards against the Pittsburgh Steelers.