LANDOVER, Md. (CBSDC) — The Washington Redskins didn’t waste any time giving fans a dose of what they came to see.
On the first play from scrimmage in his home debut, Robert Griffin III uncorked a bomb that fell was just out of the reach of Pierre Garçon’s fingertips. Two plays later he flashed his versatility and shades of Michael Vick, scrambling to the right and laying out for a first down.
And then it happened. The heralded quarterback was drilled on the blindside by Indianapolis linebacker Jerrell Freeman on what was easily the biggest hit he’s taken as a pro. Resilient, he popped back up, trotted to the sidelines and awaited the next series.
Indeed, the first half got off to a slow start for Griffin as he battled the man taken one pick ahead of him in the draft.
Washington’s offense began showing signs of life in the second quarter. Griffin orchestrated an eight-play, 66-yard scoring drive that included a successful 18-yard completion to Garçon.
Alfred Morris, the rookie running back starting his second straight preseason contest, set himself up to bang it home from two yards out to give the Redskins the first lead of the game.
Not to be outdone, Andrew Luck took the Colts on an 11-play, 80-yard scoring drive of their own to draw the score even.
The duel was on.
Griffin and the Redskins then went on an 80-yard drive that included a ‘welcome back’ moment for Tim Hightower, whose 18-yard run set up a first and goal.
Santana Moss was on the receiving end of Griffin’s first touchdown pass at home, a four-yard grab with 1:09 left in the half, to give Washington a 14-7 lead.
RGIII vs. Andrew Luck 1st Half Stats
RGIII: 10-of-14, 73 yards, 1 touchdown, 0 sacks, 107.1 passer rating
Luck: 12-of-20, 136 yards, 1 touchdown, 2 sacks, 97.1 passer rating
NOTES: Brandon Banks did not play in the first half. Niles Paul and Santana Moss each staked a claim to handle return duties.
Paul returned the game’s opening kickoff 42 yards from deep in the end zone. Moss, meanwhile, returned his first punt 16 yards.