The Washington Redskins came down to the Georgia Dome to gauge the Atlanta Falcons’ performance capabilities after back-to-back losses (to the Dallas Cowboys and then the New Orleans Saints). Televised by Fox and narrated by Kenny Albert and Daryl Johnston, the first quarter started with the Falcons on offense and a much stronger first impression than in recent memory. The Falcons scored at the end of their first possession via a play-fake to running back Michael Turner. Quarterback Matt Ryan threw the ball to tight end Tony Gonzalez for a touchdown. Atlanta 7 and Washington 0. A change-up of offense later, when the ball went back to the Falcons, Mr. Ryan threw an interception–sss-tew-rate into the grasp of Redskins linebacker Rocky McIntosh. But…what soft through yonder window breaks! It is Falcons cornerback Tye Hill catching a loose ball–slipped through the hands of Redskins tight end Fred Davis–and making a sixty-two yard TD run! Atlanta 14 and Washington 0.
The second quarter ticked down to seven or six minutes and the Redskins finally got themselves on board with a field goal. Atlanta 14 and Washington 3. With just over three minutes left in the first half, Michael Turner ran the ball in for a TD. Seconds before the end of the first half, Jason Elam made a field goal for the Falcons. Atlanta 24 and Washington 3.
Redskins QB, Jason Campbell, took five sacks in the first half. He and his offense mates appeared to have improved in the third quarter with a sneeze more momentum, a whiff of better pacing, and more ground coverage. Running back Ladell Betts broke the plane on 4th and goal, giving the Redskins their first TD of the game. Fellow running back Rock Cartwright made a couple attempts but was stopped by the Falcons defense each time. Atlanta 24 and Washington 10.
The fourth quarter shot out a TD connection between Jason Campbell and tight end Todd Yoder –or alleged TD connection. Falcons head coach Mike Smith challenged the TD ruling on account of whether or not both of Yoder’s feet were in-bounds after catching the ball in the rear of the end zone. The left foot was definitely in, but what about the right foot and knee? The ruling stood. Atlanta 24 and Washington 17. Now what? Would the Falcons be able to finish what they started, as many Falcons fans were wondering moments before Michael Turner made a fifty-eight yard run for the end zone. Redskins QB went down and out not in Beverly Hills when his team got the ball again. He suffered an ankle mishap. Todd Collins went in as QB for a possession. Campbell came back with three minutes left to play. The clock ticked and ticked to closing time. Atlanta 31 and Washington 17. Final score.
Not Another Teen Movie in German!
Observations & Miscellania:
1. Former Falcons cornerback DeAngelo Hall was booed when he making a fair catch in the middle of the second quarter.
2. According to Kenny Albert (methinks), Michael Turner’s TD in the second quarter marked his ninth for the season so far.
3. Close-up to Matt Ryan under two minutes in the second quarter: is he wearing eyeliner? Mike Smith was right there to see a late hit on Ryan by Redskins safety LaRon Landry. Ryan had already gone out of bounds when Landry came at him. Within nanoseconds, there was a convergence of jerseys on the Falcons sidelines; DeAngelo Hall (?) started pushing and shoving.
5. There was a Veterans Day parade in Atlanta yesterday afternoon? Apparently so, Daryl Johnston saw some of it.
6. After returning from the commercial break that followed Ladell Betts’s TD, one of the cameras cut to a close-up of Redskins wide receiver Malcolm Kelly’s left ankle being taped. The camera was behind the seated Kelly, on the left side. His foot ….his toes are all skin, bone, and sinews. Blood vessels. Made me think of a dancer.
8. When Todd Collins stepped in as QB for Jason Campbell in the fourth quarter, he patted Campbell on the back as they passed each other on the field. Campbell kept his head down, flanked by Redskins personnel.
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