Thursday, December 6, 2007

Losing Creatively

The Redskins have four games remaining this season. How many more ridiculous ways will they find to lose? We're guessing four.

Chicago Bears 17, Washington Redskins 15

After Jason Campbell fumbles the snap on third-and-goal from the 1, team offensive MVP Shaun Suisham drills a field goal – his NFL single-game record fifth of less than 20 yards – with 2 seconds remaining to give the Redskins a 15-10 lead and all but ensure the end to their four-game losing streak.

Yeah, right. What team have you been watching this season?

In a rare stroke of genius, Joe Gibbs, who first heard of Devin Hester after the Bears’ Only Good Player returned the opening kickoff for a touchdown, decides he will not put the ball in Hester’s hands again. But in an all too common stroke of whatthefucknius, Gibbs’ means of accomplishing this is by ordering Suisham to kick the ball out of bounds. A confused Suisham abides, and the Bears take over at their own 40, with time – thanks to Gibbs’ lunacy – for a final play.

Rex Grossman (5-for-18, 63 yards, 3 interceptions to this point) drops back and heaves a Hail Mary in the general vicinity of the end zone. The ball spirals downward, directly toward a giddy Fred Smoot, a man who couldn’t intercept a pass if it was trash-talking in front of him (See: Week 1, overtime). Sure enough, the ball whizzes past Smoot’s hands and lodges between the bars of his facemask, concussing Smoot at the 10-yard line in the process.

Desmond Clark, who eats Smoot’s weight with his afternoon tea, attempts to pry the ball loose as he swoops up and carries Smoot toward the goal line. It won’t budge.

Mushin Muhammad and Greg Olsen also try and fail, and as Clark carries Smoot across the goal line, Bernard Berrian arrives on the scene. Thanks to NFL Network’s Mic’d Up technology, viewers – well, those of you who actually get NFL Network -- are later able to hear the exchange that takes place next:

Desmond Clark: HA! Bitch, your lanky Inspector Gadget arms can’t pull that thing out! HA!
Mushin Muhammad: Yeah, you might pull a muscle – or three. Oh, did you vote for me for the Pro Bowl?
Greg Olsen: Dude, Bernard, our kicker at “The U” bench presses more than you!
Devin Hester, Only Good Player and the Voice of Reason: Fellas, just let the kid try.

Clark, Muhammad and Olsen do their best to stifle their laughter as Berrian places both hands on the ball. On cue, a light shines down from above, snow begins to fall, and church music – not fake crowd noise – blares from the FedEx Field speakers as Berrian removes the ball with ease.

Desmond Clark, while dropping Smoot to the turf like a rag doll: That’s some straight up Sword in the Stone shit!
Bernard Berrian: Call me King Arthur, bi—

Before Berrian can finish his thought, LaRon Landry pummels him out of the back of the end zone, jarring the ball loose. After conferring, the officials agree that they have a) Just witnessed a miracle and b) Berrian had two feet down with control of the ball.

Touchdown, Bears. Replay, of course, upheld the call.

New York Giants 48, Washington Redskins 42

Eli Manning throws for eight touchdowns, although five of them are to Redskins defenders. Still, the Giants are in position to clinch a wild-card berth as Campbell leads the Redskins down the field for a potential game-winning touchdown.

Facing 3rd-and-goal from the 9-yard line and out of timeouts with 8 seconds to play, Campbell drops back to pass. He throws complete to a wide-open Chris Cooley, stunning the Giants Stadium crowd. But wait. There’s a flag on the play. Chris Samuels is called for holding, resulting in a 10-second runoff. Even Gibbs knows that rule. Redskins lose.

Minnesota Vikings 35, Washington Redskins 31 (game ended with 1:21 remaining)

After letting a 17-0 halftime lead disappear by allowing the Vikings to score 35 points in the third quarter, the Redskins pull within five points with 2:12 remaining on Clinton Portis’ 3-yard run. Inexplicably, the Redskins decide not to go for two.

The decision figures to be a moot point after the Vikings fumble the ensuing kickoff and Rock Cartwright recovers at the 1-yard line. But after the Redskins break their huddle, guts spew from the entire starting offense like a game of Dominoes in Hell.

Officials stop the game, awarding the win to Minnesota by unprecedented forfeit.

In the postgame press conference, Gibbs, stoic as ever, says, “I thought our guys fought our guts out today.”

Truer words have never been spoken.

Dallas Cowboys 42, Washington Redskins 9

With the starting offense still healing its guts from the previous week’s debacle, Mark Brunell leads a contingent of second- and third-stringers into the season finale against a Dallas team that stands to gain or lose nothing, having already wrapped up home-field advantage throughout the playoffs.

In a fitting end to the season, Suisham cements his place as the team’s lone Pro Bowl representative with an NFL single-game record three field goals of at least 60 yards. Brad Johnson torches his former team for 460 yards and 6 touchdowns, and Wade Phillips defends his decision to keep throwing the ball by explaining that he wanted to get Johnson some work in the event that something happens to Cowboys’ starter Tony Romo during Dallas’ upcoming bye week. Like, say, if Carrie Underwood goes all psycho and decides to do more than dig her keys into the side of Romo’s pretty little souped-up four-wheel drive, for instance.

Yeah, that’s pretty much how the season will end. Basically.

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