Coming off of a shocking and devastating loss to the Tennessee Titans, things aren’t looking too good for the Redskins. If you can’t beat the Titans, who can you beat? The Colts? The Skins have flip-flopped between the win/loss column, and for the second week in a row, look to get a winning streak started. The weather outside will have no bearing on today’s outcome as the game is being played inside of a dome in Indianapolis. However, you would think that you’re staring at the sky with all of the blue and white jerseys in the stands.
With the captains from both teams on the field, the coin is flipped and the home team wins the toss. It’s not a loss for the Redskins who prefer to get the ball at the half.
The Redskins’ defense comes out onto the field after the kick-off is downed in the end-zone. They’re clearly ready to play and eager to get the game started. The 1st play of the game is a quick pass to Wayne, but Wright jumps the route and cannot grab the interception. Wright’s bumbling of the ball knocks it towards Rocky McIntosh who subsequently drops the sure INT also. On 2nd and 10, an active Wright comes in on the nickel blitz. The blitz is picked up, but it still forces a hurried throw to Adam Archuleta who steps in front of M. Harrison for the pick. Before Adam can step to gain yardage, he is dragged down by Stokely, and the ball comes out. The ball is recovered by the Colts, and they retain possession until Gibbs successfully challenges the play.
With the ball on the Colts’ 29 yard line, Portis runs a counter-trey to the left for a 1 yard gain. The Colts’ porous run defense looks to negate Portis and bites on a fake to him on 2nd down. With the defense going to the left, Brunell runs to the right for 9 yards and a 1st down. Although the Colts are keying in on Portis, the Skins keep displaying him. Portis runs the ball 3 consecutive times and converts for a 1st down even after being stood up at the marker; his second effort moved the chains. With CP out for a breather, TJ Duckett makes his first appearance and gains 8 yards on his initial run. TJ receives not one but two huge blocks from Sellers, and only a DB saves the TD for the Colts at the 1 yard line. CP comes back into the game, and out of a full-house formation (utilizing CP, TJ and Sellers), CP is able to knock it in for 6 points.
The Colts have the ball back and Peyton is back in full stride. He’s shifting the offense down to the 5 second mark to multiply the confusion. What you don’t normally see is a defense matching every shift with a shift, that’s what the Redskins are doing and are almost rewarded for it with another dropped interception. Utilizing a 3WR set thus far in the game, the Colts have been passing to set up the run and stretch the defense. On 3&4, the play is a toss to Rhodes. The Colts’ TE Clark picks Rogers and Taylor; P. Daniels whiffs on a low tackle as Rhodes hurdles him. There’s nothing but blue and white jerseys and the end-zone in front of Rhodes until R. McIntosh crashes in from the side to stop him 2 yards shy of the 1st down.
Clinton may not be a diesel but he’s surely a V-12, and those 1 and 2 yards a carry have turned into 6 YPC (yards per carry). Clinton’s initial run after the punt is for 9 yards, and on 2nd down, he converts by running a sweep to the right. Later in the drive, Brunell is sacked for a 7 yard loss out of bounds to make it 3rd & 17. Brunell is able to connect with ARE on a 40 yard bomb despite safety help over the top, and the ball is now on the Colts’ 30 yard line. It’s ironic that the Skins are doing more shifting than usual against the Colts and are having great success with it. Sadly, that success runs out in the redone, and the Skins settled for a FG after TJ was not able to convert.
Is it 2005? The WR screen that the Colts pull off was stolen right of the Skins’ playbook. Harrison catches the pass on 3rd down and 3 yards to go; he takes it for 15 yards and the conversion. The Redskins’ defense has been in command of this game thus far, but is soon tricked on a draw play to the left by Rhodes. At mid-field with two minutes left in the half, Peyton goes back to running down the clock and lots of shifting. With minimal shifts by the Skins’ defense, they suddenly switch back to their original defensive formation before the snap. Again Peyton gets the ball off before the blitz can get to him, and again a Redskins’ defender is in his path. Rogers gets torched by R. Wayne, and Taylor bites on a fake; however, that over aggression actually places Taylor in prime position to pick off the ball.
Sadly, the Redskins who are eager to score before the half go 3&out. Clinton is shut down, and Brunell fails to connect with a wide open B. Lloyd.
The Colts get the ball back and march down to the Skins’ 14 yard line. They get there due to blown coverage: they allowed M. Harrison to run uncovered; and thankfully Taylor is there to prevent the TD. Both Lemar and Wright drop sure interceptions during the course of the drive and continue to wreak havoc on the passing game, forcing the Colts to kick a FG.
Not being able to increase the lead before the half was a point of focus during the halftime meeting, and it would end up being a point of focus again on the sideline. The Skins come out and run CP for 6 yards to start off the half; but on 2nd down, he is stopped for no gain, and an incomplete pass seals their fate.
The Colts don’t favor too much better as Sean Taylor almost picks off another pass. There must have been a mistake in the routes because two Colts end up close to each other and cause 3 Skins players to swarm the area. As Taylor turns to pick off the ball, Kenny Wright bats it down for the incompletion.
On the ensuing punt return ARE misjudges the punt, and the ball sails over his head to the Skins’ 10 yard line. The Skins continue to utilize ball-control scheming and run the ball with CP. Although they are eating clock, they aren’t sustaining drives as CP is stopped for -4 yards on 1st down. CP is handed to again on 2nd down on a counter-trey variant. When tackled, CP fumbles the ball; Thomas dives for it, but ARE inadvertently kicks the ball from his grasp. ARE is able to scoop up the ball, screams around the corner beating June to it and out runs 2 DB’s for the TD.
Sensing the urgency of the game and the movement of momentum, Peyton comes out on fire. He continues to pick on C. Rogers with Reggie Wayne. The Colts utilize the pass to set up the run effectively, and it allows them to control the tempo of the game. The Skins’ defense cannot get off of the field and give up their 1st TD of the game.
6 minutes are left on the clock, and CP is still in the game. He looks to make up for his lucky fumble by running the clock out effectively. CP gets 5 yards on his 1st run and 9 on his 2nd. A winded Portis leaves, and TJ gets 6 on his 1st run of the possession. Duckett is truly a wrecking ball as he singled handedly runs over Doss, Harper and Sanders; he even knocked down S. Moss who was blocking Harper. On 3rd and 4, CP is stopped for no gain on a sweep to the left. The Skins punt with 4 minutes left.
Frost’s punt is downed at the 7 yard line, and the Skins’ defense plans to hold off the Colts. On 1st down, Rhodes is pulled down for a loss of one yard. Even more yardage is lost on 2nd down for a loss of three. The Skins blitz on 3rd down with Peyton almost in his end-zone and force an incomplete pass to Harrison.
Having Smith punt from the back of his end zone makes the Skins’ offense eager to put this game away. He gets the ball to the Redskins’ 45 yard line, and ARE fields it. ARE jukes one Colt out of his socks and glides to the 27 yard line. Gibbs dials in two runs for Portis and a pass for Brunell on 3rd down, and they all fail. Even electing to kick the FG proves pointless as the team falls completely apart on this drive. Hall misses his FG, and the Colts get the ball near midfield.
Not looking to pass on this opportunity, Peyton marches down the field to the Skins’ 26 yard line. Carlos Rogers has to leave the game due to a bruised thigh. On 3rd and 5, Peyton tosses a pass to Stokely running up the seam; but before he gets both hands on the ball, Taylor creams him. He jars the ball loose, and it is incomplete with a minute left on the clock. Peyton sits at the line of scrimmage for 10 seconds, eyeing the defense before tossing a pass to Clark who proceeds to run over Springs for 6 points.
One minute remains on the clock, and the Skins have two options: 1. Run the clock out and go into OT; or 2. Score and end this game. Betts downs the ball in the end-zone, and the Skins start at their 20 yard line. Brunell tosses two incomplete passes and presents a big 3rd down. The 2nd down pass to ARE is a botched call by the Refs. ARE is ruled out of bounds even though replay shows him taking 3 steps before going out. On 3rd down and 10 yards to go, Brandon Lloyd shows up. Surprisingly absent from previous big plays in previous games, Lloyd steps up and out. Throwing out of a 3WR set, Lloyd is lined up in the slot. Brunell snaps the ball and scrambles to his left, Moss is running a drag across the middle, and ARE is on a hook. CP runs a dump off route as Lloyd stretches the field vertically. Brandon has single coverage with help over top; Brunell launches one up into orbit. The ball is a bit behind Lloyd who plants his foot, jumps and rotates back towards the ball before he is nailed. With 37 seconds left and the clock running, the Skins have the ball on Indy’s 46. This time, 5 WRs take the field, but the result is the same. Lloyd runs another deep pattern and out jumps the defender for the catch at the 6 yard line. A chorus of boos flood the stadium as Hall kicks the winning FG as time expires. 00:00
Edit: This blog was archived in May of 2016 from our original articles database.It was originally posted by Christopher Allen