The Redskins learned a valuable lesson in Sunday's 16-13 win over the hapless Buccaneers. It's not how many points you score; it's when you score them.
Two weeks after having been booed off the field for narrowly beating a crappy opponent, the Skins were cheered off the field for narrowly beating a crappy opponent. Apparently the fans like three-point wins much better than one-point wins. What happens if they beat the Chiefs in two weeks by two points? Casual indifference?
Yesterday's game wasn't entirely a lovefest. At halftime, with the Skins unfathomably down 10-0, the Skins waltzed off the field to a loud chorus of boos. Half the viewing audience probably thought about hurrying over to FedEx, bumming a ticket, and booing in person.
It was a lousy all-around effort. And were it not for the wobbly leg of Tampa kicker Mike "Not Ted" Nugent, the Skins would've been down by a lot more.
But things clicked in the second half.
DeAngelo Hall picked off a duck of a pass on the first drive of the half, returning it as far as he could before being tackled, wherein he celebrated a MeAngelo-type celebration as if he had just parted the Red Sea. The Skins cashed that in for three quick points.
After the Bucs went three-and-out, the Skins ran their best drive of the season -- 10 plays and 69 yards for a touchdown. Jason Campbell, who had had the worst half of his career, drove the ball down the field sharply and accurately, using Chris Cooley as his safety valve.
When they scored the would-be tying touchdown (though the ensuing blocked extra-point threw a wrench into that), the stadium exploded.
After Santana Moss's 59-yard TD catch on the next drive, they nearly tore the place down.
That's all the fans wanted: some big plays, an extended drive... some freakin' points, really.
So even though they narrowly beat the Bucs, just as they narrowly beat the Rams, it's HOW they did it that made the fans happy.
The lesson: play hard and make big plays. Let's just hope they don't learn that, from the fan's perspective, it's more exciting to rally from behind!