Monday, September 21, 2009

Rams Fall Short Against Redskins

By Nick Wagoner
Senior Writer


First Quarter

- The Redskins won the toss and elected to receive. The Rams, in the blue jerseys with gold pants, are set to kick off.

- The Rams defense did its duty, getting a three and out as Jonathan Wade broke up a deep pass on first down and a completion to Malcolm Kelly fell 1 yard short. The Rams take over at their 28.

- Bulger quickly completed a 12-yard pass to Robinson and hit Jackson for a gain of 3 yards two plays later. With those completions, Bulger became the franchise’s all time leader in that category.

- Unfortunately, the 12-yard gain was the only first down the team would pick up and Jones punted to Washington’s 14 where the Redskins took over for possession No. 2.

- The Redskins fared much better this time around as Clinton Portis and Chris Cooley did most of the work. Washington had a first and goal at the Rams’ 8 but the Rams defense did enough to hold the Redskins to a field goal when Witherspoon tipped a third-down pass in the end zone that fell incomplete.

- Suisham connected from 21 yards out to make it 3-0 Redskins with 4:57 to go in the quarter.

- Kenneth Darby got the first kick return opportunity of the day for the Rams, bringing it back to the Rams 15.

- The Rams’ second opportunity started ominously when McMichael fumbled after a catch but it was negated by a roughing the passer penalty.

- Center Jason Brown suffered a right knee injury and was replaced by Mark Setterstrom at center.

- The Rams have a second down at Washington’s 46 to open the second quarter, trailing 3-0.

Second Quarter

- The Rams’ drive stalled after a second down sack and they had to punt it back to Washington. The Redskins took over at their 26.

- Again, Washington was able to march it down the field, converting a third-and-10 in Rams territory when Campbell hit Santana Moss for a gain of 21 yards. The Rams again came up with a hold, as Washington settled for a 28-yard field goal from Suisham to make it 6-0 Washington with 7:58 to go in the half.

- The Rams offense found the spark it needed on second down of its ensuing possession as Jackson snaked through a hole on the right side and raced for a gain of 62 yards. A block in the back on Avery cost them 10 yards but gave the Rams a first down at Washington’s 36.

- The Rams picked up another first down on a completion to McMichael for 7 yards and a penalty.

- That helped set up a third-and-3 for the Rams at Washington’s 17.

- Jackson passed Dick Bass for fourth on the team’s all time rushing yards list.

- Bulger hit Robinson for a key third down conversion to give the Rams a first down at Washington’s 5.

- On third down, Bulger hit Robinson again with a fade pattern to the left corner of the end zone for a 2-yard touchdown to give the Rams their first lead of the season with 3:56 to go in the half at 7-6.

- The defense got a stop when Ron Bartell forced a fumble and recovered it. The play was originally ruled down but a booth review overturned it and the Rams went to the locker room with a 7-6 lead.

Third Quarter

- The Rams received the opening kickoff of the half hoping to maintain momentum gained at the end of the first.

- After a 13-yard strike to Robinson on first down, Bulger threw three straight incompletions and the Rams punted. Washington took over at its 21.

- The Redskins managed a trio of first downs, including another third down conversion to Moss.

- On third-and-10 at Washington’s 47, Campbell hit Cooley for yet another conversion, this time for 18 yards.

- Again Washington marched deep into Rams territory and the St. Louis defense found a way to force another field goal.

- Suisham converted this one from 23 yards out to make it 9-7 Washington with 6:27 to go in the quarter.

- The Rams have responded with a long drive of their own, one that’s still going after some key conversions, including a second-and-25.

- At the end of the third quarter, the Redskins lead the Rams 9-7 and the Rams have the ball at Washington’s 21.

Fourth Quarter

- Poised to take the lead in the fourth quarter, disaster struck the Rams. An offense that had taken care of the ball all day, lost it when Avery caught a potential third down conversion and coughed it up when Chris Horton forced a fumble. Carlos Rogers recovered for the Redskins at their 7, where they took over.

- The defense was able to get a stop as a James Hall sack forced Washington to punt from its own end zone.

- The Rams picked up 8 yards on the first two plays but an incompletion on third down led to a Rams punt.

- Washington took over at its 20 and pieced together a long, time consuming drive deep into St. Louis territory, including a fourth-down conversion at the Rams’ 20.

- On fourth-and-short from the Rams’ 2, Washington opted to go for it again.

- This time, the Rams got a stop and got the ball at their 4.

- But the Rams had four consecutive incompletions and Washington regained possession.

- The Redskins got in victory formation and ran the clock out for a 9-7 win.

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