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Taking a closer look at the Redskins' game-winning and potentially season-changing final drive in Seattle

Taking a closer look at the Redskins' game-winning and potentially season-changing final drive in Seattle

SEATTLE—For the first time since at least 1999, the Redskins scored a game-winning touchdown on a drive that started with less than two minutes to play. It got them a 17-14 win over the Seahawks in one of the most improbable victories in recent history.

The Seahawks had scored a touchdown to take a 14-10 lead with 1:34 left to play. The Redskins answered with four plays in 35 seconds.

The first pass was incomplete. Then things got rolling.

RELATED: Five takeaways from Redskins' improbable win against the Seahawks​

Kirk Cousins pass deep right to Brian Quick, pushed out of bounds for 31 yards to SEA 39

Quick had played just 11 snaps all year going into the game but with Jamison Crowder out with an injury he had to play an increased role. He was quiet for most of the game until that last drive.

Cousins was knocked to the ground after he released the ball and he didn’t see the completion.

“Brian did a phenomenal job creating separation versus man coverage, running the route the way we had wanted to,” said Cousins. “The protection was a little loose so I really didn’t get a chance to see it. I just threw it to a spot and got hit and then you’re just kind of waiting for a reaction.”

The reaction was mostly silence from the Seahawks’ famed 12th man as they were getting a little nervous. They fell silent after the next play.

Cousins pass deep left to Josh Doctson for 38 yards to SEA one

This one had to be reviewed both to make sure that Doctson’s diving effort was a catch (that wasn’t really close, it was) and to see if he rolled into the end zone after diving at around the five and then skidding to the goal line. It was ruled that he was indeed touched down inside the one.

Cornerback Josh Norman was in awe watching from the sideline.

“He’s a first-round guy, that was a first-round catch,” he said. “He said he was going to do that.”

Norman thought that here might have been some divine intervention involved in the play.

“He’s done it in practice so it’s not surprising to me that he came back and the Lord granted him with a second chance, a second opportunity,” he said.  He saw that thing in the air. It looked like the angels pushed him forward a little bit. He speeded up, he’s got another gear to him. He got up on the ball and caught it.”

Cousins’ explanation was more mechanical.

“We just called and audible there at the line of scrimmage, he said. “Jay [Gruden] had said that if you get press man, give him the ball. So we gave him and hand signal and he took off. I put it out there pretty far, and he went and got it.”

They still had some work to do after the Seahawks called a timeout with 1:02 left to play. The call was Rob Kelley into the line.

Kelley left guard for 1 yard, TOUCHDOWN

“I remember Kirk telling me we had to get it in, it’s the last chance to get it in,” said Kelley. “And everybody believed in what Kirk said and we did it.”

Right before Kelley spoke he was stuffing the ball he carried on that play into his backpack.

“I tried to give it to Doctson, he didn’t want it,” he said.

He wasn’t at all worried that four of the five offensive linemen in front of him were not starters two weeks ago. He noted that he was a backup when he played at Tulane.

“You’ve got to take what you’ve got and keep rolling.”

While many fans were hoping that the Redskins would take a couple of plays to score to burn off more time and keep the ball out of quarterback Russell Wilson’s hands, D.J. Swearinger was perfectly happy to have to get back out and defend in the last minute.

“I wanted to have the opportunity to win the game, not let the clock run out,” he said.

Norman agreed. “We wanted to get back on the field after that.” 

“When you have an offense come in there and have your back like that, heh, that’s big-time, that really is. You’ve got to take your hats off to them.”

The defense gave up a couple of first downs, the last one at the Washington 38. Seattle needed just a field goal to tie the game but they didn’t get close enough. Terrell McClain sacked Wilson, forcing a Hail Mary on the last play.

Wilson pass deep left for McEvoy incomplete (pass breakup by DeAngelo Hall)

Hall was playing in his first game since Week 3 of last year.

“That’s a team, that’s a group, that’s what it’s all about, guys out here battling until the last second,” said Norman.

MORE REDSKINS: Redskins nearly turned Seahawks' Super Bowl LI fail into the greatest two-point conversion​

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page Facebook.com/TandlerNBCS and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.

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Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—Where's Galette, Cousins' future

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Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—Where's Galette, Cousins' future

NEW ORLEANS—Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, November 18, one day before the Washington Redskins play the New Orleans Saints at Mercedes Benz Superdome.

Timeline

Today’s schedule: AM walkthrough and then travel to New Orleans. No media availability.

Days until:

—Giants @ Redskins Thanksgiving (11/23) 6
—Redskins @ Cowboys Thursday night (11/30) 13
—Redskins @ Chargers (12/19) 23

Quick Redskins news hits

C Spencer Long tried to play last week and he couldn’t make it more than a dozen snaps before sitting down for the rest of the day. He is out against the Seahawks tomorrow.

With Brian Quick and Ryan Grant questionable with concussions and Terrelle Pryor out with an ankle injury, the Redskins are down to three healthy wide receivers. While Quick and Grant might play, the depth chart could have Doctson, Crowder, and Harris on it.

The Redskins week that was

2 reasons Redskins didn't trade Terrelle Pryor—If you want to know why the deal with the Browns didn’t happen, follow the money. Between his signing bonus and the half of the year’s salary, the Redskins have already paid $4.5 million. Although he hasn’t been nearly as productive as they hoped he would be, there was no point in letting him go to save $1.5 million unless they got a second-day draft pick, or maybe a fourth, in return. See that Jay Gruden said that he didn’t hear of the proposed trade, talks must not have become too serious.

Remember Junior Galette? The Redskins don't seem to—As with Pryor, everyone is waiting for Galette to break out. But unlike Pryor, he’s not an expensive unproductive player. He’s making the veteran minimum. Against the Vikings, he played just 19 snaps. Perhaps a return to New Orleans for a game against his old team will spark a sack or two.

Recent comments from Cousins may hint at future in D.C.—Cousins has been big on making statements about the long-term future with the Redskins (read the post for specifics). That doesn’t mean that it’s a lock that he stays in town. But it should give some pause to those who believe that it is a lock that he will be in another uniform when 2018 or, at the latest, 2019 rolls around. He has never been inclined to go to the highest bidder and if the Redskins make a competitive offer that delivers what he wants he could well stick around.

How the Vikings scored 21 unanswered points against the Redskins—The 21-0 run in about seven minutes of game time that the Vikings used to make a competitive game at FedEx Field a rout was a combination of good offense by the Vikings and bad defense and offense by the Redskins. They couldn’t cover Adam Thielen on either drive. Cousins threw an interception off of his back foot and that set up the middle of the three touchdowns. If the Redskins end the season a game out of a playoff spot that seven-minute stretch will be one of the big reasons why they failed to make it.

Player one-liners, defense— Usually, the offensive edition of the player one-liners tends to be the most popular but this week it was the defense that drew the most interest. The defensive player I’m going to keep an eye on the most in the last seven games is rookie safety Montae Nicholson. He has the speed and hard hitting ability that the secondary needs. When asked what will happen when Nicholson is healthy, Jay Gruden said without hesitation that he is the starter. Nicholson’s health will be important for the defense down the stretch. DeAngelo Hall is better suited to a part-time role at this stage of his career.

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page Facebook.com/TandlerNBCS and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.

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Redskins getting thin at receiver with two more injured wideouts out on Sunday

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Redskins getting thin at receiver with two more injured wideouts out on Sunday

In August, Redskins fans would freak out if they heard Jordan Reed and Terrelle Pryor would both miss a November game.

In November, that news doesn’t carry much worry.

Washington coach Jay Gruden announced that Reed and Pryor, along with center Spencer Long, won’t play Sunday against the Saints.

RELATED: KEYS TO VICTORY AGAINST THE SAINTS

Reed hasn’t played in a few weeks as he is dealing with a hamstring injury. It seemed he might have returned last week before a setback slowed down his progress.

In his place, Vernon Davis has proved to be a sturdy backup capable of some big games.

Long injured his knee and while he played last week, he did not practice this week.

Not having Pryor is a bit of a surprise. His ankle injury popped up this week and he will see a specialist next week to examine the joint. In the middle of a disappointing season, the Redskins offense won’t lose much with his absence.

Elsewhere on the injury list, a number of players will be questionable for Sunday’s contest against the 7-2 Saints.

Perhaps most important, Trent Williams is questionable but will probably play.

MORE ON THE REDSKINS: FIVE PLAYERS UNDER PRESSURE

Receivers Ryan Grant and Brian Quick are expected to play after undergoing concussion protocol, but that will leave the Redskins with only three fully healthy wideouts: Jamison Crowder, Josh Doctson and Maurice Harris.