Griffin Clinches Redskins Victory
Charles E. Sutton | 10/15/2012, 5:08 p.m.
Redskins' quarterback Robert Griffin III drifted back in the pocket, scanned the field, then tucked the ball and began to run. On third-and-6, a Redskins first down may have been enough to put the game on ice. But, the rookie ran away from the Minnesota Vikings defense as he sprinted down the left sideline for a 76-yard touchdown. However, he didn't stop there. After he had run through the end zone, he jumped into the stands, doing what is becoming referred to as the "Landover Leap."
After experiencing a concussion last week, Griffin returned to FedEx Field and still played like the RGIII that we've come to know. He brought his team back from an early deficit, threw for 182 yards and ran for 138 on Sunday in a 38-26 win which ended the Redskins' eight-game home losing skid and broke the Vikings three-game winning streak.
Washington was being outgained 148-7 and they fell behind 9-0. The Redskins (3-3) responded by scoring 24 unanswered points during a stretch in which they outgained Minnesota 225-14. The Vikings (4-2) consistently had drives that resulted in field goals instead of touchdowns. Kicker Blair Walsh's four field goals accounted for all of their points through the first three periods.
With eight minutes and two seconds to play, the Vikings finally scored a touchdown on receiver Michael Jenkins' 9-yard catch. They followed it up with tight-end Kyle Rudolph's one-yard touchdown reception with 3:36 left to cut the Redskins' lead to 31-26.
But, the Heisman Trophy winner responded by posting the longest touchdown run by an NFL quarterback since Kordell Stewart ran 80 yards for the Pittsburgh Steelers against the Carolina Panthers in 1996. Minnesota had been using their timeouts, anticipating that they would gain possession of the ball with an opportunity to win, but Griffin put the game away with his scamper down the sideline with only 2:43 left in regulation.
Griffin had a good passing day, also. He went 17-of-22 for one touchdown and one interception. Rookie running back Alfred Morris had a 1-yard scoring run, fullback Darrel Young added a 6-yard touchdown reception, and former Viking safety Madieu Williams took an interception 24 yards for the Redskins' fourth defensive touchdown of the season. Washington already has put up 49 points off turnovers this season, compared to a total of 43 for the previous season.