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Familiar problems haunt Redskins in opening loss

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Familiar problems haunt Redskins in opening loss

The Redskins gave the visiting Miami Dolphins all they could handle in their season opener. But their longtime issues with special teams cost them. Jarvis Landry’s 69-yard punt return in the fourth quarter was the difference as the Dolphins walked out of FedEx Field with a 17-10 victory. 

Key Moments: 

Kirk Cousins threw his first interception of the year in the second quarter, rolling to his right and apparently not seeing cornerback Brent Grimes, who jumped in front for the interception. But the Redskins defense stepped up. A nice tackle by Dashon Goldson on a pass to the sideline set up fourth and one. Lamar Miller tried to get the first down off left tackle but Ryan Kerrigan chased him down from the other side and made the tackle for no gain. The Redskins held on to their 3-0 lead. 

After taking possession at their 12, the Redskins embarked on a magnificent drive, covering 88 yards in 17 plays, chewing up over eight minutes of clock. Cousins capped it with a four-yard touchdown pass to Jordan Reed to make it 10-0. But with less than two minutes left in the half, the Dolphins offense came to life and marched 80 yards to a three-yard touchdown pass from Ryan Tannehill to Kenny Stills to cut the lead to 10-3 at the half. 

After the Dolphins tied the game at 10 on a field goal, the Redskins went three and out, committing four penalties in the process. Landry took Tress Way’s 54-yard punt and headed up the middle, quickly finding some open spaces. It looked like Way had a bead on him but Landry put on a move and blew past him. That put Miami up 17-10 with 10 minutes left to play.

The Redskins had a chance to respond with their next drive but Brice McCain made a circus interception of a Cousins pass intended for Pierre Garçon. The Dolphins couldn’t get much going and punted back to the Redskins with 5 minutes left to play. 

The Redskins drove down to the Dolphins 20, mostly on the legs of Morris. But a Cousins pass went incomplete on third and seven setting up fourth and seven. Cousins was rushed hard and threw for Reed incomplete. 

Scoring drives: 

First quarter

FG Forbath 45 

Drive 12 plays, 53 yards, 7:21

Key plays: The Alfred Morris ran for 27 yards on 5 carries to keep the drive going. A third down conversion on a pass from Cousins to Jordan Reed kept the drive alive. A Jordan Phillips sack of Cousins in Miami territory stalled the drive and they had to settle for the field goal.

Redskins 3, Dolphins 0

Second quarter

Reed 4 passes from Cousins (Forbath kick)

Drive: 17 plays, 88 yards, 8:49

Key plays: After the defense stopped the Dolphins after the Cousins interception, the Redskins took over at their 12. They embarked on the longest drive they have had since 2012, with both Morris (5 carries 19 yards) and Matt Jones (6-29) picking up good chunks of yardage on the ground. A 22-yard pass from Cousins to Pierre Garçon helped things along. The score came on third and goal, with Reed hauling in the pass in the corner of the end zone.

Redskins 10, Dolphins 7

Stills 3 pass from Tannehill (Franks kick)

Drive 9 plays, 80 yards, 1:22

Key plays: Things got started with a 27-yard pass from Tannehill to Jordan Cameron.  A 15-yard penalty was tacked on to a pass from Tannehill to Greg Jennings, getting the Dolphins into scoring position. 

Redskins 10, Dolphins 7

Fourth quarter

FG Franks 22

Drive 10 plays, 76 yards, 4:21

Key plays: Lamar Miller runs of 13 and 17 yards got things going for the Dolphins. Miami got as close as a first and goal at the three but the defense stiffened. DeAngelo Hall made a tackle for a seven-yard loss from there and a delay of game penalty on third down made it goal to go at the 10. The Dolphins settled for three points.

Redskins 10, Dolphins 10

Landry 69 punt return (Franks kick)

Landry took Tress Way’s 54-yard punt and headed up the middle, quickly finding some open spaces. It looked like Way had a bead on him but Landry put on a move and blew past him. 

Players of the Game: 

Alfred Morris was a huge factor for the Redskins. He carried 25 times for 121 yards and helped the Redskins move the chains. 

On defense, rookie Preston Smith got a sack and strip of Tannehill and, after a wild scramble, he recovered the fumble. 

Injury Update: 

DeSean Jackson left the game in the first quarter with a hamstring injury. He did not return.

S Duke Ihenacho left the game with a left wrist injury and went into the locker room. He did not return. 

CB DeAngelo Hall left the game with a rib injury in the second quarter but he returned after halftime. 

OT Morgan Moses left in the third quarter with an eye injury. He did return. 

From the Locker Room: Check back later for later for notes and quotes from the Redskins locker room.

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NFL players react to news that Andrew Luck is retiring

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NFL players react to news that Andrew Luck is retiring

NFL players took to Twitter on Saturday to send well-wishes to Andrew Luck after news broke that he is retiring from the NFL. 

ESPN's Adam Schefter reported that Luck was 'mentally worn out' after years of battling injuries. Luck confirmed the news in an emotional press conference on Saturday night.

"Andrew luck I understand you 100% brotha," wrote Dez Bryant. "... take your time ... I wish you the best."

Redskins rookie quarterback Dwayne Haskins reacted to the news with emojis.

Former player turned ESPN analyst Emmanuel Acho posted video of Colts fans booing Luck as he walked into the locker room. "Coach always said, 'the pats on the back eventually turn into stabs,'" he wrote.  

"That's bad to boo that man," added former Redskins player Chris Baker.

Former Ravens and current Carolina player Torrey Smith tweeted that anyone in the sport understands.

Jaguars long snapper Matt Overton wrote he was "shook."

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Falcons safety Keanu Neal says no 'ill intent' for big hit on Jordan Reed

Falcons safety Keanu Neal says no 'ill intent' for big hit on Jordan Reed

Jordan Reed took a major blow to the head in the Redskins third preseason game in Atlanta, and the blow eventually landed Washington's stud tight end in the NFL's concussion protocol. 

Falcons safety Keanu Neal delivered the hit, and while it was clearly illegal and resulted in a penalty on the field, he took to Twitter to defend his play. 

It's hard to judge intent under the incredible speed that plays happen during pro football. When a player goes in for a tackle, ball carriers can also move, and plays that look dirty in slow motion can look reasonable in full speed. Still, it's undeniable that Reed took a major shot in the helmet from Neal, and it definitely seemed unnecessary. And it's not a secret that Reed has dealt with serious head injuries throughout his NFL career. 

There has been no update on Reed's condition beyond that he's in the NFL concussion protocol. Reed also stayed in the game after the big hit from Neal before his concussion symptoms showed up at halftime. 

Neal is a fifth-year safety out of the University of Florida. He missed most of the 2018 season with an ACL injury. Reed also attended the University of Florida.

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