LONDON—Here are my five main observations from Redskins 27, Bengals 27:
—It’s tough to rely on kickers. The Seahawks and Cardinals learned it last week in their tie and the Redskins learned it today after the Dustin Hopkins missed a 34-yard field goal that would have won the game in overtime. For that matter, neither kicker was that reliable today. Mike Nugent missed a long but makeable 52-yard field goal attempt and an extra point. Besides his overtime miss Hopkins was short on a 55-yard try at the end of the first half. Perhaps the soccer turf here at Wembley Stadium is not suited well to kicking an oblong ball.
—Regardless of the chance to win it at the end, the Redskins took the tie as a loss. The thought was that they came out here to win and they didn’t do that. They could eventually end up being very glad they didn’t lose the game since a tie hurts them less in the division and wild card standings than a loss would have. But for right now, they fell short of their goal.
—Kirk Cousins deserves to get paid. He played a great game in almost every aspect but the fact that it wasn’t a win. He passed for 458 yards, completing 68 percent of his passes at 8.2 yards per attempt. His one interception really didn’t matter, a long pass on third and long that essentially amounted to a punt. I don’t know where the Redskins are going to find a better option at the position. And good ones cost big money.
—Jamison Crowder gets better and better every week. He went for 107 yards on nine receptions today. His effort to cover the last 12 yards on his 33-yard touchdown catch was excellent.
—The defense could have been better. The team’s streak of holding opponents to 20 or fewer points in games ended at four. Josh Norman had two hands on two Andy Dalton passes and he couldn’t make the catch on either one. Still, they made some plays with Will Compton coming up with what possibly was a game-saving interception in the red zone in the fourth quarter and they stripped Dalton on a quarterback sneak with a minute left in overtime to give the Redskins one last-gasp chance for a win.
—Rob Kelley started off slowly. At halftime he had 10 carries for 29 yards, an average of 2.9 yards per carry. But it was a different story in the second half as he carried 11 times for 58 yards, an average of 5.3 yards a pop. He ran hard; he saved the best for last, getting 16 yards in overtime to set up a short field goal try for Hopkins. It will be interesting to see how things sort out when Matt Jones is ready to play. I think Jones still will start but it will be hard not to give Kelley a lot of touches.