Is the Washington Redskins‘ four-year losing streak in season openers under Jay Gruden about to end? Well, they’re halfway there.
The Redskins hit the locker room at halftime with a 21-0 lead over the Arizona Cardinals after controlling all three phases of the game over the first two quarters.
Adrian Peterson got carries early and often, even passing Hall of Famers Marshall Faulk and Jim Brown in career rushing yards in the first quarter. Chris Thompson got involved on the second drive with carries of 13 and 14 yards and later caught Alex Smith’s first touchdown pass as a Redskin on the first play of the second quarter.
Peterson found paydirt himself on the following possession, pushing it in from a yard out with linebacker Ryan Anderson making an appearance at fullback.
The defense held its own, too, forcing consecutive three-and-outs in the second quarter. Sam Bradford, in his Cardinals debut, went just 3-for-7 for 11 passing yards in the first half.
That’s a far cry from Smith’s line of 17-for-20 and 171 yards. Smith also made plays with his legs in the second quarter, running for 11 yards and two first downs.
A 92-yard drive lasting just 3:11 — abetted by three straight defensive penalties — allowed the Redskins to strike once more before halftime. Smith threw his second touchdown of the day, a four-yarder to Jordan Reed, who twisted and stretched past the front-right pylon.
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