TOP 20 GAMES OF 2012
AT #20 November 22, 2012#20 Revealed May 6
AT #19 September 16, 2012#19 Revealed May 7
AT #18 November 11, 2012#18 Revealed May 8
AT #17 January 20, 2013#17 Revealed May 9
AT #16 December 16, 2012#16 Revealed May 10
AT #15 December 2, 2012#15 Revealed May 13
AT #14 September 30, 2012#14 Revealed May 14
AT #13 November 22, 2012#13 Revealed May 15
AT #12 October 14, 2012#12 Revealed May 16
AT #11 September 23, 2012#11 Revealed May 17
AT #10 October 28, 2012#10 Revealed May 20
AT #9 September 23, 2012#9 Revealed May 21
AT #8 October 15, 2012#8 Revealed May 22
AT #7 October 7, 2012#7 Revealed May 23
AT #6 December 16, 2012#6 Revealed May 24
AT #5 February 3, 2013#5 Revealed May 27
AT #4 September 24, 2012#4 Revealed May 28
AT #3 December 30, 2012#3 Revealed May 29
AT #2 January 13, 2013#2 Revealed May 30
AT #1 January 12, 2013#1 Revealed May 31
Game 20: Redskins at Cowboys Week 12
Some Kind of Homecoming
And then there was the Turkey Day trouncing. At least that’s the way it started it out for Robert Griffin 3 and the Washington Redskins on Thanksgiving 2012.
Griffin put on a show for America that Thursday evening in November, and because of the huge national audience, there was a bit more oomph to his game in Dallas than the narrow loss to the Giants or the aforementioned win over Minnesota. But a strange thing happened during RG3’s national coming out party, and over-the-moon return to his home state of Texas. The Cowboys made a game of it, which makes it the 20th top game of the 2012 season.
Dallas had to make a contest of it – Griffin was kicking the Cowboys secondary’s butt up and down the field.
First, there was the perfect throw on a beautifully executed post pattern out. Sixty-eight yards later, Aldrick Robinson was sprinting in the end zone. 7-3, Washington.
Second, Griffin converted an important third down at the Dallas 41 en route to Alfred Morris scoring on a one-yard plunge. 14-3.
Third, Griffin strikes again, laying the ball just over the top of Bruce Carter’s outstretched hands and into Pierre Garcon’s. The former Colt dashes 40-plus yards to pay dirt and it’s now 21-3.
We’re not done.
On the ensuing Redskins’ possession, Griffin would hit Santana Moss on a brilliantly played back shoulder fade. 28-3, just like that.
|RG3's Second Quarter in Dallas|
|YARDS PER ATT||22.25|
The military brat who spent most of his childhood in Copperas Cove, Texas had completely eaten alive the Dallas secondary in front of God, country, and all those spastic Baylor fans who thought he should be drafted ahead of Andrew Luck...and he did it in about 15 minutes of game clock.
That led to a furious second-half rally by the Cowboys, and showed that a team often considered devoid of character had no such ills. The Dallas offense put up 28 second-half points and 334 yards of offense. Romo attempted 41 throws in the second half, all of which made for a wild affair that came down to an onside kick with 18 seconds to go.
Time would run out on Dallas. The time had come for Robert Griffin 3’s emergence.
Historical Symmetry: Washington and Dallas have linked up several times on Thanksgiving, the most famous of which was the “Clint Longley game,” when the Cowboys benchwarmer threw two second-half touchdowns in rallying Dallas from a 16-3 deficit in a 24-23 win.
Longley didn’t last long. Well, at least not after he sucker-punched Roger Staubach in the Cowboys’ 1976 Training Camp. He threw 24 more career passes in one year with the Chargers. And that was that. Lesson: Don’t punch franchise quarterbacks.
Can’t-Miss Play: RG3’s second touchdown pass of the game of this wild one was nothing short of awesome . Griffin took a seven-step drop from his own 40. The moment his back foot hit the 31, the ball was out -- perfectly laid over the leaping Bruce Carter and stabbed out of the air by a twisting Garcon. The 2012 free-agent acquisition gathered himself and exploded past Mike Jenkins and Brandon Carr like they had 6.8 40 times.
(Almost) Play of the Game: Trailing 38-28 with over a minute to play, Romo took a shot to Dez Bryant from near midfield. Like the miraculous catch that he came up a finger too long versus the Giants, Bryant just missed this one too, leaping between two Redskins defenders in the end zone, only to lose the ball on the way down.
Best Player on the Field: Is there any question on this? In fairness, Bryant did catch eight balls for 145 yards and a couple of touchdowns. Still, it has to be RG3, who made one mistake (a second half INT) in a day of being mostly perfect. He threw just eight incompletions in the process of amassing 304 yards and four passing touchdowns.
Why This Game is No. 20: This was certainly one of the best one-man band displays of the 2012 season. Doug Martin’s ridiculous 244-yard performance in Oakland was another.
The difference here was the confluence of several factors that gave Redskins-Cowboys a kind of football synchronicity. It was, after all, the latest edition of arguably the NFL’s top historic rivalry, save maybe Bears-Packers. It was a game that all of America was watching, especially after Texans-Lions had been such a nail-biter in the moments leading up to kickoff at Cowboys Stadium. And, much of the Redskins’ playoff viability and RG3’s rookie honors emerged from this Week 12 thriller.
Isn’t that worthy of kicking off our Top 20 Games of 2012?
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