In an nauseous quarrel of a loss, Washington shows fight, and gets a glance of a …

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To Washington rookie Coach Jay Gruden, a afternoon in Lincoln Financial Field simply looked like an exasperating 37-34 defeat to a Philadelphia Eagles that plausibly competence have been an dissapoint feat over a fortifying NFC East champions. Because he has not been partial of Washington’s annual psycho-dramas with a NFL franchise, he saw this as a wild-and-woolly — nonetheless still normal — game.

If his group had not given adult a 102-yard kickoff lapse for a score, if his quarterback had not thrown a fourth-quarter interception, if place kicker Kai Forbath had not missed a elementary 33-yard margin idea try and if 325-pound defensive lineman Chris Baker had not lighted a 92-man sideline rumble by flattening a Eagles’ quarterback circuitously midfield, a day competence have finished in victory.

In particular, if his group — and his possess play calls — had been means to make only one initial down to set adult a intensity game-tying margin idea after Washington got a round behind during a Philadelphia 41-yard line with dual mins to play, afterwards any mistake could have been lost and any elementary impiety forgiven. Even a potentially critical damage to a team’s best defensive back, DeAngelo Hall, who said, “They tell me we have a torn Achilles’,” competence have receded temporarily.

Instead, three passes fell incomplete, and Gruden was left as grim-jawed as many of his team’s fans competence have been equivocal stupid after examination Kirk Cousins pass for 427 yards. Where Gruden saw flaws, many who follow his group competence see light in darkness. Or a flicker. Something a lot improved than a 3-13 record. How bad can NFL life be if we go toe-to-toe with your division’s best and shock ’em silly?

“I like a approach we battled back. . . . We flexed a muscles a small bit in a second half when we were 10 points down. . . . I’m really unapproachable of Kirk — a approach he played and a approach he battled,” Gruden pronounced of his backup quarterback, who threw for 3 touchdowns and a 103.4 quarterback rating in place of harmed Robert Griffin III. “But in a end, we all had a palm in this [defeat], a coaches, too. . . .Very frustrating, really disappointing.”

Luckily for Gruden, he lacks a clarity of context. For him, a universe is a unsatisfactory 1-2 record in a deteriorate when, with fewer mental mistakes and special teams blunders, his group could be 3-0.

What he competence not grasp is how abysmally demoralizing 2013 was for a city that obsesses over his team. In that 3-13 year, that finished with 8 true defeats and a banishment of manager Mike Shanahan, Washington seemed dynamic to siphon a fun and fad — as good as any possibility for feat — out of a weekly NFL battles and reinstate them with dull intrigue. Now, instead of venom striking between a owners and a coach, D.C. indeed gets to demeanour during a tough detriment and maybe see some progress.

The brightest light was Cousins, who finished 30 of 48 passes in one of a NFL’s many antagonistic environments. Cousins can insist, as he did final week after a 41-10 feat over Jacksonville in that Griffin dislocated his ankle, that “this is Robert’s team.” But if any quarterback plays good enough, tenure can change.

One of Griffin’s biggest hurdles has been removing low passes to his long-ball threats. On Sunday, Cousins — and Gruden with his diversion formulation — seemed calm to hang to short, protected passes after discerning reads. But a shackles gradually came off. And Cousins went deep.

The many noted of his 5 completions to ex-Eagle DeSean Jackson was an 81-yard scoring strike behind a Philadelphia delegate that tied a measure during 27 late in a third quarter. The decorated Jackson danced into a finish section using backward, afterwards did a derisive “fly, Eagles, fly” strap with both arms — a same approach he used to tweak Washington when he infiltrated a finish zone.

That impulse silenced a throng temporarily though competence have delirious a Eagles. Just 7 mins later, with a measure still tied, Philadelphia quarterback Nick Foles threw a pass circuitously midfield that Washington seemed to intercept. Replay after showed a pass fell incomplete. But both teams played on — oh, did they. The huge Baker speckled Foles circuitously and, in a long-running NFL tradition, used a random interception-return assembly to — “oh, I’m sorry, did we do that?”— squash Foles.

“I didn’t do anything wrong,” Baker confirmed afterward, simply deliberation Foles an Eagle really many in need of being blocked. Others, maybe even many of mankind, differed with his perspective — including officials who gave him a 15-yard chastisement and threw him out of a game.

Suddenly, roughly all 92 uniformed employees of a dual contestants quiescent to shove, punch ineffectively, abuse and squeeze one another’s face masks in an huge mastodon mating dance. The victors, it is said, get to write a story books. That’s how it works in Philadelphia, for sure.

“Yeah, if we see your quarterback get strike in a unwashed approach — it was apparently unwashed — that kind of charged us up,” Eagles using behind LeSean McCoy said. “It dismissed us up, generally a descent linemen.”

Foles lay quiescent for some time. “I suspicion a man [Bashaud Breeland who competence have intercepted his pass] was down, so that’s because we wasn’t looking for anyone,” pronounced Foles, who really wasn’t looking for a vast condominium about to hit with him. “The subsequent thing we know, I’m only obliterated.”

Foles, who wasn’t knocked out, merely bloody in a ribs, got adult and led a Eagles to a 34-27 lead with a 27-yard bullet of a scoring strike over a center to Jeremy Maclin. The far-reaching receiver had slipped behind Brandon Meriweather, a vulnerable reserve who was victimized on dual touchdown passes. Baker has no repute for unwashed play. The same can’t be pronounced of a often-penalized, fined and dangling Meriweather who, if he couldn’t play dirty, couldn’t play during all.

The NFL has been in a spotlight for several years for several image-tarnishing issues, many of them serious, from an widespread of concussions among players to new problems — and ineffectual joining responses — to players charged with domestic and child abuse.

Large players scornful any other, vowing apocalyptic atonement for mystic affronts and generally enchanting in normal football fun presumably isn’t within a stream clean-up-the-game purview. Or as Washington linebacker Brian Orakpo said, “That’s only NFC East football. That’s how it be sometimes.”

Last year, Washington could occasionally be indicted of indeed enchanting in “NFC East football” — during slightest a greatly opposition kind. This game, opposite a transparent front-runner in a division, showed a new Gruden group in a distant improved light.

The presentation of Cousins as a genuine opposition for Griffin — and this creates dual considerable showings in a quarrel — will emanate debate around a group though within a classification itself roughly positively will be seen as a smashing annoyance of riches. Just a week ago, Cousins came to a postgame news discussion dressed casually. On Sunday, he arrived in a dim suit, white shirt and burgundy tie. Part of a disproportion in clothes is due to home vs. highway dress norms. But a fit was eloquent.

So was Cousins when he picked detached his fourth-quarter interception. “If we had it to do over, I’d chuck it to Andre Roberts station all by himself in a flat,” he said. Cousins combined that he would work to mislay such bad decisions “so dual years from now those mistakes aren’t still there. . . .

“We did a good pursuit battling. We only came adult brief during a end. And there’s nobody to censure there though me.”

Harsh, distant too harsh. It’s doubtful that even one of a 45 other group on his group would agree.

By a finish of final season, many wondered either devising this authorization “in dual years” was an practice in being a fan or a masochist. On days like this, even in defeat, even in a diversion full of nonsensical screw-ups and nauseous sideline rumble, a destiny again looks like a place that Washington, a football group and a new manager competence wish to try together.

For some-more by Thomas Boswell, revisit washingtonpost.com/boswell.

More a Redskins:

Takeaway: Cousins a splendid mark in detriment to Eagles

The Insider: Hall believed to have ripped his Achilles’ tendon

Baker defends purpose in brawl

The Insider: Gruden speedy though disappointed

D.C. Sports Bog: Best and misfortune from Redskins-Eagles

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