Penalties contribute to Redskins' unraveling vs. Lions
The Redskins committed 10 penalties for 77 yards in Sunday's 37-25 loss at Detroit, including a number of infractions that either helped Detroit score or took points off the board for Washington.
The first came on a fourth-and-1 play from the Redskins' 7 yard line and the Lions lining up for a field goal. Defensive lineman Phillip Daniels, though, was called for encroachment -- an infraction that gave the Lions a first-and-goal at the Washington 3.
Several Redskins said afterward that Detroit long snapper Don Muhlbach moved the ball before he snapped it.
"The center moved the football on the field goal play," linebacker London Fletcher said. "You saw about three, four guys move. They're not just jumping."
The Lions scored two plays later to take a 14-13 lead in the third quarter. On the ensuing kickoff, returner Brandon Banks appeared to have a 95-yard return for a touchdown. But safety Reed Doughty was called for a block in the back, and the Redskins instead took over at their own 8.
"Reed is a very good special teams player," said Washington cornerback Brian Westbrook, "so I doubt that he tried to deliberately block him in the back."
The final key penalty came with the Redskins leading 25-20. Detroit quarterback Matthew Stafford threw incomplete on second and 10 -- bringing up what looked like it might be a huge third-down play. But safety Kareem Moore was charged with defensive holding -- only a five-yard penalty, but an automatic first down. Four plays later, the Lions scored the go-ahead touchdown.
"Obviously we would have loved to have had those points, but it's football," cornerback DeAngelo Hall said. "Things like that happen. You're going to get penalties. You've just got to fight through them. Just because we gave those 10 points up [on defense], we still made a lot more mistakes on top of all that."
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