Daybreak 5th Quarter: Redskins soar over Cardinals, while Ravens and Terps go down
Redskins eke it out: Graham Gano, whose job wasn’t even guaranteed heading into training camp, booted a 34-yard field goal to cap a late rally as the Redskins knocked off the Arizona Cardinals 22-21. The win moves Washington to 2-0 on the young season; it’s the first time since 2007 that the Redskins have won their opening two games. Here’s the recap from ESPN.com and video highlights courtesy of NFL.com.
Jay Westcott's sweet photo gallery from the game is here as well.
The surprising 2-0 start has the local and national media buzzing. "The way the Redskins won this game in the final minutes, not simply the fact that they won, may show the beginnings of culture change," Thomas Boswell writes in the Washington Post this morning.
Meanwhile, in the Valley of the Sun, after two shaky outings by the new look Cardinals defense, there are calls for patience and change...quickly.
Next up: The Redskins hit the road for the first time in 2011, traveling to face arch-rival Dallas at Cowboys Stadium on Monday night.
Night and day in Nashville: Last week, the Baltimore Ravens forced seven turnovers in a 35-7 home romp over the Pittsburgh Steelers. On Sunday, it was the Ravens turn to cough the ball up in a 26-13 loss to the Titans.
"A week ago, the Ravens could have owned the city," the Baltimore Sun writes. "If only the Super Bowl were played last week."
Seattle Seahawks castoff Matt Hasselbeck tossed for 358 yards, while Ravens QB Joe Flacco sputtered and threw two interceptions. "When Flacco did receive proper protection, he held onto the ball too long and forced throws as the Ravens again saw a lackluster effort from their wide receivers," observed Luke Jones from WNST in Baltimore.
Next up: It doesn't get much easier, as the Ravens travel to St. Louis to face Sam Bradford and the upstart Rams on Sunday afternoon.
Oh so close: As ugly as the first half of Saturday's Maryland/West Virginia game was for the Terrapins, the second half was almost equally as thrilling. Danny O'Brien scuffled in the 1st half, throwing two picks. Before you knew it, the Terps were down 31-10 early in the 3rd quarter.
But a furious rally drew Maryland within three, and O'Brien had the Terps moving down 37-31 in the waning moments of the 4th. However, he forced a pass on 3rd and long, resulting in a game-ending interception for the Mountaineers and Maryland's first loss of 2011.
For the Terps, their 21-point comeback was exciting for the fans at Byrd Stadium, it was too little, too late.
"O’Brien’s late interception was particularly tough to swallow because he appeared to have an open running late in front of him," Glenn Clark writes for WNST. "Even if stopped short of a first down, the Terrapins would have had an opportunity to pick up another short 4th down conversion on the drive and continue their path to the end zone."
Next up: Maryland continues a four-game homestand to open the season with an afternoon match-up on Saturday with the Temple Owls.
Rollover in Blacksburg: Arkansas State proved to be no match for the Hokies in a 26-7 walkover at Lane Stadium. 16 first quarter points did the Red Wolves in.
However, it didn't start well for Frank Beamer's bunch, as the Hokies defense allowed Arkansas State to march down the field and score on their first drive. However, after that, the Hokies stout defense shut the Red Wolves down, holding them to just 64 rushing yards.
Next up: The Hokies have one more tune-up game before jumping into their ACC season, traveling to West VIrginia to take on Marshall on Saturday.
Wahoos downed: In their ACC opener, the Virginia Cavaliers were victimized by Bryn Renner's strong arm and Giovani Bernard's 102 rushing yards as the North Carolina Tar Heels came away with a 28-17 victory.
The Wahoos ended up with a whopping 468 yards of offense, but two interceptions from Michael Rocca and numerous squandered scoring opportunities gave the Heels the edge.
Next up: The Cavaliers host Southern Mississippi in a non-conference match-up in Charlottesville on Saturday.
NFL Hot Reads
-Before the season started, "Bills/Raiders" and "offensive showdown" didn't belong in the same sentence. But happen it did, as Ryan Fitzpatrick hit David Nelson for the game-winning touchdown with less than 4 minutes left in a 38-35 win.
-Michael Vick didn't make it out of his first return visit to Atlanta as the Philadelphia Eagles' starting quarterback. He sustained a concussion when he banged heads with one of his offensive linemen in the 4th quarter, and a few minutes later, Michael Turner scampered into the end zone to ice a 35-31 win for the Falcons.
-From the same game, methinks Dunta Robinson will be hearing from Roger Goodell after his helmet-to-helmet hit on Jeremy Maclin.
-The Colts are 0-2. Not only are they 0-2, their losses have been to Houston and Cleveland. Let that sink in for a moment.
-On the flip side, the Detroit Lions are not only 2-0, but they put a 48-spot on the defending AFC West champions. Welcome to bizarro world. Not even the Detroit Free Press can put a finger on what's going on.
-And you thought you've had some late nights. After a 3+ hour rain delay, Oklahoma State and Tulsa finally kicked off at about 12:40 a.m. Eastern time. That didn't phase the Cowboys, though, who still put up 59 in a victory over the Golden Hurricane.
-That other Oklahoma team is pretty good too. The top-ranked Sooners went down to Tallahassee and came away with a key 23-13 win over Florida State.
-The college football expansion kerfuffle has struck close to home again. Hello, Pittsburgh and Syracuse in the ACC. Goodbye, perhaps, to Big East football.
-Navy held a 21-17 lead on the road at South Carolina heading into the 4th quarter, but the Midshipmen couldn't stop Gamecocks standout sophomore RB Marcus Lattimore in the 4th. He scored with 12:45 left in the game to vault his team to a 24-21 victory.
-In other local action, Yale knocked off Georgetown 37-27...Norfolk State defeated Howard 23-9...Richmond beat VMI 34-19...and Old Dominion outscored (literally) Hampton 45-42.