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Sunday, September 24, 2006

September 24-- Brunell makes history, Portis shines in Skins first win of season

Clinton Portis and Ladell Betts combined for 210 yards rushing as the Redskins got their first win of the year beating Houston 31-15.. This ended a ten game losing streak to AFC teams and got the Skins to 1 and 2 for the season, they remain one game out of first place behind 2-1 Philadelphia..

Mark Brunell broke an NFL record completing 22 consecutive passes to start the Texans game.. The record for consecutive completions over the course of two games is 24.. Rich Gannon held the previous record of 21 completions in a single game..
Brunell called the accomplishment a team record talking about the receivers all being in the right place, the line blocking well and of course the run game opening the door for the throws…
Joe Gibbs said he became aware of the impending record at #21 and then talked to Al Saunders to ensure he called a safe play so that Brunell would have a great shot at getting it.. Many of the players have different takes on when they began to find out they had a shot at it.. Randy Thomas said he looked up at the scoreboard at one point and said “19-19, is this some damn record, we got something going on here, I’m going to tell my kids about this some day.” Chris Samuels said inactive Jim Molinaro told him as early as 14-14 what was happening..
Brunell took some personal satisfaction after the week of severe criticism saying he had to stay positive after hearing a lot of things “I knew were not true.”
Santana Moss said that “I’m always going to stand up for my guy, if Mark was playing shitty, then I have to see what I’m doing wrong to make things better for him.” Moss was one of the most vocal supporters of Brunell last week..

For the third straight week the Redskins gave up points on the opponents opening drive.. After the opening drive score by Houston the sideline was as animated as I have seen it, Joe Gibbs was emphasizing to his team that this scenario was something the team had discussed being that Houston started the Philly game the same way.. Players were openly jawing at the offensive line to be the group that got the Skins going.. Washington proceeded to rattle off 31 straight points to take command, it included a 30 yard touchdown run by Clinton Portis with 1 second remaining in the half.. Joe Gibbs said the plan was for Portis to run a trap play, get as much as he can and call a timeout to set up a field goal.. But he broke it.. Portis turned a shuffle pass into a 74 yard gain which led to the Redskins first score..
Moss said Al Saunders surprised him the night before the game showing the skill position players films of the first two weeks emphasizing the good plays the team had.. He said what they saw was signs that their offense could work if the right guys get the ball in the right place.. For a day it did, but keep in mind the Texans defense ranks dead last in the NFL in 8 different categories including total defense..

The one negative remained the penalties, the team had 124 yards of penalties called against them, twice they had two holding calls on the same play.. The Texans negated a defensive touchdown though with a personal foul of unnecessary roughness on a hit on Brunell.. Brunell said he did not believe this was a cheap shot, but the penalty came because it was so far away from the play..

DT Joe Salave’a was inactive due to a calf injury, he’ll be re-evaluated next week.. RB TJ Duckett was a surprise inactive but Joe Gibbs said the reason was concern over the health of the TE’s.. Gibbs said Chris Cooley and Christian Fauria both had some health issues which forced Gibbs to keep three TE’s active just in case something happened in the game.. He said Duckett took the news well..
QB Mark Brunell entered the press conference with his left hand in a bandage, he said he cut his elbow and that it is nothing serious..
The team reported no injuries after the game.. DE Andre Carter was poked in the eye but was fine, CB Carlos Rogers had a contact lens knocked out, but had it replaced and returned without issue..


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