After being dominated in the first quarter, Washington took control of the game and then the Eagles, beating host Philadelphia 23-17. The Redskins improved to 4-1, an incredible mark given the quality of teams they faced. Not to mention the fact that they went 2-1 in their three NFC East road games.
They might not be considered the favorite in the division, but no one else has faced the schedule they have.
"It’s definitely a level of fulfillment and enjoyment," defensive end Andre Carter said. "The hard work is paying off… But we still have a long season to go."
Said London Fletcher, "We’re happy with where we’re at, but not satisfied. We still have a lot of work to do before we’re an upper echelon team. We’re just a blue-collar team."
The Redskins never panicked after Philly took a 14-0 first-quarter lead on a Brian Westbrook touchdown run and a 68-yard DeSean Jackson punt return.
The Eagles then drove to the Redskins’ 32, where they missed a 50-yard field goal.
But the Eagles managed just 135 yards over the next three quarters. Meanwhile, the Redskins gained just 23 of their 388 yards in the first quarter.
Philly’s blitz gave them problems. But the communication up front was vital to picking up the blitzes. And the running game started to click. Clinton Portis finished with 145 yards on 29 carries as the Redskins finished with more than 200 yards on the ground, an incredible stat given the Eagles only allowed 52 yards per game before Sunday.
Portis only touchdown of the day, a quick-snap short run, gave Washington a 23-14 lead early in the fourth quarter.
But it was Antwaan Randle El’s 18-yard pass to Chris Cooley that gave the Redskins their first lead of the game in the third quarter.
Shaun Suisham kept Washington in the game with three first-half field goals, including one in the final seconds that appeared to give the Redskins even more momentum.
Once again, the Redskins failed to turn the ball over offensively. Quarterback Jason Campbell did not play at an elite level, at least not when it comes to passer ratings. But he took care of the ball and made plays with his legs, scrambling for a key first down on Washington’s final drive, which consumed just over seven minutes remaining.
The Redskins also converted a fourth-and-1 on that drive with 2:48 to play, with Portis running three yards on a draw. With the Eagles out of time outs, the Redskins only needed to take a knee after that play.
The Redskins’ secondary took away the Eagles’ deep passing game and corner Carlos Rogers shut down rookie DeSean Jackson. End Andre Carter had two tackles for a lsos and played one of his best games in Washington.
"It’s probably a shock to a lot of other people. But our job is to make it to 5-1," Rogers said.
The Redskins proved to be a resilient bunch.
"We were a little shocked," Redskins coach Jim Zorn said. "We didn’t change our game plan and we stayed with what we were doing."