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Game Ends In Disappointing Result For Kirk Cousins

Posted Oct 12, 2015

After leading the Redskins on a game-tying drive at the end of regulation, Kirk Cousins was unable to hit Ryan Grant on a pass in overtime, instead resulting in a pick-six.

After leading the Redskins on a game-tying drive at the end of regulation, Kirk Cousins was unable to hit Ryan Grant on a pass in overtime, instead resulting in a pick-six.

It was a difficult way to lose a game that was sent to overtime on a wild back-and-forth ending to the fourth quarter.

After winning the overtime coin toss in Sunday's game against the Falcons in Atlanta, the Redskins elected to receive the ball to start the opening frame.

Score a touchdown, and the game is over.

On their first seven plays of the drive, the offense looked in-sync, as quarterback Kirk Cousins twice connected with  wide receiver Jamison Crowder and running back Chris Thompson also got two touches.

But on 2nd and 8 from the 50-yard line, Cousins was quickly pressured by Falcons linebacker Nate Stupar into getting the ball out. Doing so, though, negatively affected Cousins' timing with wide receiver Ryan Grant, who slipped, and the pass soared into Falcons cornerback Robert Alford’s hands.

Fifty-nine yards later, Alford was in the end zone for a walkoff pick six.

“It was hot off the left side and I felt the need to get rid of the football, not take a sack and kill the drive so I threw it,” Cousins said after the game. “The guy made a great play and that was it.”

Cousins throughout the day made some key throws where only his receivers could get to it. But he admitted he was also off target at times, too, slightly underthrowing his receivers.

“I felt like I wasn’t good enough on some of those throws,” Cousins said. “There is nowhere to point except to myself. I have to make those throws. I can make those throws and I believe I will over the long haul, but today I left too many out there.”

Redskins head coach Jay Gruden agreed that Cousins was “up and down” Sunday against an undefeated team in a loud dome setting, but the fourth-year quarterback did have some positives.

“He competed, made some big time throws, missed some throws he would normally make,” Gruden said. “He’ll tell you that. Again, we want to be in the game at the end of game, and he put us in the position to be there and unfortunately Ryan [Grant] slipped, and they made a good play. I think we can get better from Kirk, we can demand better from Kirk and he will get better.”

Cousins’ two best drives of the day resulted in the Redskins' offense putting points on the board, as he first marched the offense down the field for a 12-play, 67-yard touchdown drive to put the Redskins up 7-0.

Then with the game on the line in regulation and just 24 seconds to move the team from their own 20-yard line into at the very least field goal range, Cousins did just that, hitting three different passes for 46 yards to allow kicker Dustin Hopkins to nail a 52-yard field goal.

“It takes great play calling. It takes great execution. It takes great pass protection,” Cousins said of that drive. “They know we are passing; those guys can pin their ears back and rush the offensive line. I wasn’t held up. I was able to take seven-step drops. Derek Carrier did a phenomenal job after the catch getting up the sideline and getting out of bounds, which gave us a chance to regroup. Pierre [Garçon] did a great job coming over the middle with effort, diving for that ball. Then Jamison Crowder getting out of bounds to give us a chance for a field goal. It takes all 11 and again the play calling put us in a good position.” 

The Redskins will have to close the door on this game soon, turning their sights to a New York Jets team that has one of the best defensive units in the NFL.

Cousins will be ready come Sunday at 1 o’clock at MetLife Stadium.

“The bounce-back thing has never been an issue for me,” Cousins said. “Bouncing back - I mean if you look back at my story, that’s my life; bouncing back, fighting adversity, and continuing to be tough, mentally, physically tough. I feel like I have always been able to do that and to play quarterback in this league you had better be able to do that and so going forward that is something I will continue to have to do.”

RELATED LINKS:
-- Hopkins Overcomes Miss To Force Overtime
-- Defense Fulfills Promise By Forcing More Turnovers

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