Washington - 20 Pittsburgh - 13
Redskins end their Magic Carpet Ride season with a tough victory against the Steelers. It was Washington's defense which won this one like it did against the Vikings in the NFC Championship Game. The game was a tough defensive struggle and it was THREE big Ben Roethlisberger turnovers which decided this game. Otherwise, Pittsburgh's defense completely shut-down the injury riddled Washington offense. Already without Randle-El due to injury, Santana Moss was knocked coo-coo mid-way through Quarter One through the first half. Ever with Moss it was still very difficult to move against the Steel Curtain and Scott, who called a great game.
The first Big Ben turnover was a long pass interception which was returned 77 yards for a TD by DeAngelo Hall at the end of the 1st Quarter. Immediately afterwards on Pitt's next possession, Big Ben threw another interception on a look-in-pass. The Redskins ultimately settled for a FG to make the score 10-0. Pittsburgh then put together its best drive of the night on its next possession. The Steelers go 68 yards on five plays and get the TD on a 11 yard TD pass by Hines Ward. With 1:15 left in the half Suisham's 37 yard FG made it 13-7, but then Pitt's special teams came up with a big play. After being held to a three and out the Steelers punt with 16 seconds left but Antwaan Randle-El has the ball jarred loose and the Steelers recover at the Redskins 22 with 8 seconds left in the half. Reed trots out and kicks the 39 yard FG to make the score 13-10 Redskins at halftime.
The second half was just as defensive oriented as the first. Both defenses dominate as the Third Quarter is scoreless. Then Big Ben makes the third big turnover of the night. On 3rd and 4 on the Pitt 13 Big Ben fumbles the snap and London Fletcher recovers. Several plays later Clinton Portis runs around right end for the 3 yard TD run to put Washington up 20-10. The Steelers made a comeback attempt but the clock was not friendly. The Steelers did move the ball 68 yards on 9 plays with 2:06 left and kicked a 45 yard FG with 45 seconds left. The onside kick was recovered by Washington and Campbell took the knee to end the game.
If not for the three turnovers Washington would have only scored three points and the victory very well could have went to the med in black and gold!
It was a fun season coaching this team, and many thanks to David who chipped in when I was away and did a great job.