LANDOVER, Md. -- Over the past several years, the Eagles offense has made its name with big plays. Huge throws, big-time catches and ankle-breaking runs have all been staples of an Andy Reid offense. This season has been an unusual one, as those big plays have been going against the Eagles instead.
The Redskins scored two touchdowns on big passing plays Sunday. The first came in the second quarter when quarterback Robert Griffin III found a wide open Aldrick Robinson in the end zone for a 49-yard score. In fact, calling Robinson wide open is probably an understatement.
On the play, it appeared that the secondary had a miscommunication that left Robinson alone in the end zone. For safety Kurt Coleman, the most frustrating aspect was that the play wasn't a surprise.
"These routes were very basic," Coleman said after the game. "There was never something we had never seen. It was just something that two people saw differently, and that's what led to a miscommunication and led to a big play."
The second big play came in the third quarter on a 61-yard catch by Santana Moss, who was covered by both Coleman and cornerback Brandon Boykin. Coleman was positioned for the interception but couldn't come up with the ball. After the catch, Boykin was unable to keep Moss out of the end zone.
Recovering from those plays, Coleman said, is all part of the mental toughness an NFL player must have.
"You're told from a young age – the next play is the most important play," he said. "And any given play you can turn the game around. So even though we gave up a big play, the next play you can still turn the ballgame around. As a player you have to continue to stay motivated, continue to stay positive; continue to work hard."
In total, the Redskins had six plays on offense of 20 yards or more. Griffin III had a career game against the Eagles, completing 14 of 15 passes for 200 yards and four touchdowns. He also added 84 yards on the ground.
"It's like for a quarter or two you're looking good and then something slips and you keep slipping," said cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. "Now all I can say is you have to keep fighting. "
Getting back up and fighting will be a critical test for the Eagles. They will welcome quarterback Cam Newton to Lincoln Financial Field next Monday. Like Griffin III, Newton is a dynamic playmaker who can win games with his arm and with his legs. For the Eagles' secondary, this week will be about learning from mistakes and not getting too down. Coleman doesn't think that will be a problem.
"We have six games to go. And I'm not giving up on myself; I'm not giving up on this team," he said. "I don't think anyone else has that type of mindset. This is our profession, this is what you love to do and we have to go out there and continue to fight."
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