Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Redskins 19, Titans 16: Graham Gano is the Hero in Another Overtime Victory

The Redskins pulled out a season-saving (for now!) victory against the Titans on Sunday, 19-16.

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The game was close throughout, and the key for the Skins was Donovan McNabb repeatedly converting third downs during the second half (several on throws to Chris Cooley). Prior to this game, the Skins' third down conversion rate of 22% was lowest in the NFL, but McNabb and company turned it around on Sunday.

Clinton Portis started the game for the first time in several weeks, and he had some nice runs in the first quarter but was then injured (again) and replaced by Keiland Williams (23 rushes for 68 yards), a rookie from L.S.U.  Williams played very well, helped by a more-effective-than-usual performance by the offensive line. I've just checked and Williams was actually un-drafted!

Graham Gano missed a 47 yard field goal in the waning moments of regulation, and when he came back out to try a 48 yarder in overtime I was not overly confident (and frustrated that the offense couldn't get any closer in its last three plays).  But he kicked the ball beautifully and it sailed high over the posts. 

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Because McNabb is playing quarterback and leading the team, I continue to enjoy watching the Skins more than in previous years.  I realize he has his share of bad plays but it is so much more fun to watch a guy who seems invested in playing hard and being a good teammate. On Sunday, McNabb was 30 of 50 for 376 yards, with 1 touchdown (a nice pass to the side of the endzone to Santana Moss) and 1 interception.

The NFC East standings now:

Eagles: 7-3
Giants: 6-4
Redskins: 5-5
Cowboys: 3-7

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