FIRST IMPRESSIONSThe Washington Redskins headed into Monday night's showdown against the Seattle Seahawks hoping not to repeat the performance they had the last time out in a 45-14 thrashing at the hands of the New York Giants on Thursday Night Football.
That gameplan was clearly easier said than done against the defending Super Bowl champions, however.
Seattle was able to have its way early and often against Washington on Monday in front of its home crowd in another nationally-televised matchup.
But the Redskins showed the ability to make some in-game adjustments, eventually putting a stop to the efficient – and lightning-quick – Seattle offensive attack, which included early success by quarterback Russell Wilson via the read option play.
Although the Washington defense was able to get its stops deep into the second and third quarters, however, Seattle often found success pinning the Redskins deep in their own territory, and the home team couldn't muster many successful drives from that point on, as the Seahawks defeated the Redskins 27-17 in front of an announced crowd of 79,522 at FedExField.
With the loss, the Redskins fall to 1-4 on the season.
REVEALING MOMENTThe Seahawks were leading by a touchdown, 17-10, when they lined up for a 49-yard field goal with 11:24 remaining in the game.
But with just one yard to go to convert the first down, Seattle head coach Pete Carroll decided to pull a little trickeration. The snap was to holder/punter Jon Ryan, who took off to the left side of the line for a five-yard gain and the first down.
It was a deflating moment for a Redskins team that thought, one play earlier, had surely negated a big 19-yard pass play when quarterback Russell Wilson appeared to have crossed the line of scrimmage during his throw. Washington challenged, but the officials said, after the review, that Wilson's entire body was, in fact, not across the line.
From there, the Seahawks were able to milk the clock a little more and add some insurance with a nine-yard touchdown pass from Wilson to running back Marshawn Lynch with 6:31 left. After the extra point, they claimed their insurmountable 14-point lead.
PLAY OF THE GAMEIt was a thing of beauty against one of the best secondaries in the league.
With about 2:40 left in the second quarter, the Redskins were trailing 17-0 and really needed some sign of life to get a little momentum going into halftime.
On 2nd and 6, quarterback Kirk Cousins, lined up in the shotgun formation, dropped back. He was flushed from the pocket and had to scramble to his right before making an impressive throw off his back foot that traveled about 40 yards in the air straight into the waiting hands of wide receiver DeSean Jackson, who had burned cornerback Richard Sherman and safety Kam Chancellor. From there, all Jackson had to do was step out of a shoestring tackle attempt by Sherman and waltz into the end zone to complete the 60-yard touchdown play.
It wasn't the last time Cousins and Jackson would hook up on the night, but it was the Redskins' most notable play of the game.
PLAYER OF THE GAMEJackson gets the nod here.
Known for his knack to make the big play on the big stage, Jackson caught five passes for 157 yards and the aforementioned touchdown Monday night.
He made another huge play on a dart from Cousins on the very first play of the third quarter. Cousins, who lined up under center with fullback Darrel Young and running back Alfred Morris behind him, faked the handoff to Morris and immediately looked downfield to his left.
Cousins planted and launched the throw exactly where he wanted it to go – over the shoulder to Jackson, along the sideline, who made a nice two-handed catch and went out of bounds after netting 57 yards on the play.
Jackson continues to show the Redskins exactly why they wanted him so badly when he was released by the Philadelphia Eagles in late March. He was blowing the top off a secondary that earned its own nickname – the "Legion Of Boom" – last season en route to a Super Bowl title.
WHAT'S NEXTFor the second time in three weeks, the Redskins will face a short week. They play six days from now in Glendale, Ariz., against the 3-1 Arizona Cardinals.
The Cardinals are coming off their first loss of the season, a 41-20 loss to the Broncos Sunday in Denver. In that game, Arizona allowed 568 yards to the potent Denver offense, the most yards they've allowed since 1973.
The Redskins are 74-44-2 all-time against the Cardinals. Using the formula for winning percentage adopted by the NFL in 1972 to include ties, the Redskins' .625 all-time winning percentage against the Cardinals is Washington's highest against any opponent with a minimum of 50 games played.