Redskins 13, Ravens 7
Mother Nature tried to put a stop to the NFL pre-season game between the Washington Redskins and the Baltimore Ravens all night long; and in the end, she was successful. National Football League officials called the game off with 11:38 to go in the third quarter as thunder and lightning persisted at Fed Ex Field. The Redskins were ahead by a score of 13-7 at the time.
The only Redskin touchdown of the evening came from the defense. Kyle Boller dropped back to pass and was nailed by a blitzing Anthony Trucks and Pierson Prioleau as the quarterback began his throwing motion. The ball squirted out of his hand and into the awaiting arms of rookie linebacker Dallas Sartz, who returned it three yards for the score less than a minute into the second half. Replay officials upheld the call that Boller had not started the forward motion of the pass, and awarded Washington the score and a 13-6 lead.
Shaun Suisham may have taken some undue pressure after missing his first field goal of the season, but much like in 2006, he's been perfect following the miss. Not only did the young Canadian kick two field goals against the Ravens (25, and 45 yards), he did so in the most inclement of weather conditions. Many summized that the Redskins needed to bring in another kicker for competition, but it appears that not only do the Redskins not intend to bring anyone else in - they don't need to. Suisham is solid, and has a terrific leg - he showed it on Saturday night outdoors in the rain - the toughest of circumstances for an NFL kicker.
Todd Collins got the starting nod over Mark Brunell (in relief of an injured Jason Campbell), and was unimpressive in the spotlight. Collins went 8-of-15 for 88 yards, but the majority of it came on one Redskins' play on their first drive - a 40-yard bomb to Santana Moss. The drive stalled after the completion, and Washington had to settle for the first of Suisham's two field goals. Collins didn't make any major mistakes either though, and that might actually be enough to win the number two quarterback spot this year.
Once again, the real story for Washington was the play of their defense. Although Baltimore scored on a 6-yard TD pass from Steve McNair to Derrick Mason, the Ravens' offense was kept very much in check. McNair finished 14-of-19 for 98 yards in one half of work and Willis McGahee was held to just 12 yards on four carries.
Redskin rookie Laron Landry had his best showing so far. Despite holding out from a few days of training camp while he was getting a contract done, the safety out of LSU doesn't appear to have fallen behind at all. In fact, there is no reason to believe that he won't be entrenched as the starter when the Redskins open the regular season against the Miami Dolphins. Landry finished with three tackles (2 solo, 1 assist), a great special teams tackle, and two quarterback hurries - not bad for a half of work.
Despite the win, in the end the Redskins had to be happy to escape with a clean bill of health. Cornerback Fred Smoot offered, "It's hard to turn the muscles on and off, on and off, on and off. I'm just happy both teams got out of here with no serious injuries. That's one thing we can't control, is Mother Nature."
The Redskins played without six players that project as regular season starters: Campbell, running back Clinton Portis (knee tendinitis), left tackle Chris Samuels (sprained knee), linebacker Marcus Washington (dislocated elbow), cornerback Shawn Springs (precautionary rest) and newly arrived Jets import, left guard Pete Kendall.
For the Ravens, cornerback Samari Rolle (sprained ankle), receiver Mark Clayton (sprained ankle), and defensive tackle Haloti Ngata (swollen knee) all sat out. Safety Ed Reed (bruised thigh) and linebacker Prescott Burgess (concussion) were injured in the first half, and defensive tackle Trevor Pryce left the game with back spasms.
This article was released on 2007-08-25.
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