The Washington Redskins are going into their bye week with mixed emotions as they tied the Cincinnati Bengals 27-27 in London on Sunday. This is the first NFL tie in the 11-year International Series.
With Redskins running back Matt Jones ruled out for the game, Washington had to lean on quarterback Kirk Cousins in order to have a chance at handing Cincinnati a loss. Cousins delivered a performance for the ages by completing 38 passes for 458 yards with two touchdowns.
Cousins did an exceptional job of spreading the ball around as six different receivers caught at least three passes.
Of those players, wide receiver Jamison Crowder delivered the best statistical performance, catching nine passes for 107 yards and one touchdown. Tight end Jordan Reed made the Bengals’ defense look foolish on a 23-yard catch-and-run score.
Although Washington leaned heavily on the passing attack against the Bengals, their run game was still solid as backup running back Rob Kelly churned 87 yards on the ground against Cincinnati’s front-seven while finding the end zone once.
Despite allowing 27 points, the Redskins’ defense delivered a serviceable performance when it counted as defensive end Chris Baker was able to force an Andy Dalton fumble in overtime, which was recovered by teammate Anthony Lanier. This fumble helped prevent the Bengals from coming away victorious.
Washington’s defense was also able to keep Bengals quarterback Dalton out of his comfort zone by sacking him three times and intercepting one of his passes.
Kicker Dustin Hopkins, on the other hand, had a forgettable day overseas. Hopkins missed two field goals, including the potential game-winner. To his credit, Hopkins was able to force the game into overtime with a successful 40-yarder.
A tie isn’t ideal, but it’s still better than a loss.
“I’m certainly happy we didn’t lose; disappointed we didn’t win,” Cousins said in the post-game press conference.
The good news is this draw comes against an out-of-conference opponent, which doesn’t hurt the Redskins with tiebreakers within the NFC.
However, the tie could potentially hurt the Redskins down the road. After all, it was a game that slipped out of their grasp.