Sometimes you need a little luck to get you kick-started. Actors talk about their “big break”. Athletes and coaches talk about “turning points” in a game or a season. For the Washington Football Team this season, it very well might be that we end up looking back at the offsides penalty that gave Dustin Hopkins a second chance to hit a game-winning field goal as one of those lucky moments. Giants fans all over the place were coming out of the woodwork trying to do in-depth video analysis to claim that Dexter Lawrence hadn’t actually jumped offsides. Even journalists like Mike Florio were buying it.
But the call was the correct one based on the initial impressions and based on slow-mo video.
And while any honest observer wouldn’t say that was truly “lucky” since it was the correct call, it certainly was fortunate for Washington that they got that call. We’ve all watched plenty of big penalties not get called in baffling losses before.
Washington now has the opportunity to either use the fortuitous firing of a large man’s glutes as a springboard to a successful season, or to let it be simply an unimportant anecdote as they stumble toward mediocrity.
Week 3’s game against the Bills in Buffalo will be, as Ron Rivera indicated on Tuesday, “a measuring stick” for how good his team is or could be this season. A solid performance wherein some of the glaring defensive weaknesses from the first two weeks appear to have been addressed will go a long way toward giving Rivera (and Washington Football Team fans everywhere) some confidence that his team could live up to the offseason hype and make a run to the playoffs. Another wobbly showing, especially out of the defense, and WFT fans will understandably experience significant doubts about the quality of this year’s iteration of the Burgundy and Gold.
The Giants game was ugly, but it was a win. Was it a portend of more ugliness, or more wins? Let’s dive into our Week 3 WFT Reality Checks to see what clues we can garner from watching Washington play the Bills this weekend.