3 instant over-reactions to Washington's win over Cincinnati originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington
The entire NFL seemed to stop when Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow went down with a season-ending leg injury in the third quarter in Washington's 20-9 win on Sunday, but back on the field, Washington got a valuable win. It wasn’t pretty, or really even exciting, but Washington’s third win of the season brings the Burgundy and Gold within a half-game of the Eagles for first place in the NFC East.
Seriously. How’d they get here? Let’s take a look:
1) It’s remarkable how much more balanced the Washington offense can be when the team doesn’t fall in an early hole. Antonio Gibson scored a touchdown on the second offensive drive of the game, and in turn, offensive coordinator Scott Turner was able to keep his play-calling balanced. About 50 minutes through the game, Washington had more than 130 yards rushing and had about evened out time of possession.
2) Chase Young saved a touchdown early in the game on a monster hit on Burrow that forced a fumble, and in turn quieted a growing narrative that perhaps Washington should have made a different decision with the No. 2 overall pick in April’s draft. Young registered a pass break-up as well as the big Burrow hit to go with two tackles. More so, Young responded after a costly penalty last week in the closing seconds of a loss to Detroit.
3) Washington’s defense seemed on track to give up more than 500 yards of offense at halftime, but by the end, things improved. Much of that was tied to Burrow’s exit, as the Heisman winner was carving up the Washington defense, but Jack Del Rio’s group did much better stopping the run this week. At halftime, the Bengals had only rushed for 52 yards and Washington’s defense allowed its fewest rush yards since a Week 7 win over Dallas.