With 7:58 remaining in the third quarter, The Washington Football Team was down 24-3 to the Detroit Lions. All signs were pointing to a classic beat down. Fans on social media were in an uproar. Questioning the decision making of Alex “Checkdown” Smith and some clambering for Dwayne Haskins to get some reps in a blowout.
Washington stayed its course on the road and stuck to the game plan; quick throws to replace a dreadful rushing attack. If we subtract the 27 yards run from Terry McLaurin, Washington ran the ball 25 times for 62 yards (2.5 yards per carrying). Although the running game was suspect, the Football Team was able to cash in on red zone opportunities with 3 rushing TDs.
It wasn’t explosive but Alex Smith was the leader of a 21-0 run to tie the game at 24 with 6:09 remaining in the game. Smith also set a career-high for completions going 38 for 55 with 390 yards passing. With all this praise comes some backlash. Smith struggled versus the Lions Cover 2 defense as he couldn’t squeeze throws behind the cornerbacks and in front of the safeties. If Smith completes a few of those passes, we’re talking about a convincing Washington win.
Smith led Washington 66 yards on 17 plays to set up a Dustin Hopkins 41 yard field goal to tie the game up at 27 with 16 seconds remaining. The former All-Pro chain snatching cornerback Aqib Talib was calling the game and spoke of overtime too soon. Detroit, on their own 35 was gifted with a Roughing the Passer penalty, courtesy of Dematha product Chase Young. The Lions completed a 9-yard pass after the penalty to set up Matt Prater for a 59-yard field goal to win the game.
In all, that second half was by far the best showing for the Washington Football Team. A few mistakes led to a defeat but they displayed resilience and never lied down. Fans should have some sense of hope with this trend of competitive losses. It can’t last forever, right? They’re going to win these games eventually, right?