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Nov 14, 2012 8:48pm
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NEW ORLEANS —Robert Griffin III lifted his head from the Superdome turf so he
could witness the fruits of his sacrifice, then raised both arms in the air as
he began to sit up. Ryan Tannehill Jersey . Although the Redskins
rookie can scramble with the best of them, he decided against dancing away from
blitzing Saints safety Malcolm Jenkins, electing instead to wait until the
moment before impact to deliver the throw he was supposed to make. The result
was an 88-yard connection with Pierre Garcon that gave Griffin his first NFL
touchdown and set Washington on the path to a season-opening 40-32 upset of New
Orleans on Sunday. Making a slew of clutch plays, Griffin sustained drives and
helped Washington dominate time of possession, 39:10 to 20:50. Well-rested
Redskins defenders liked what they saw. “He lived up to all of the hype. Hes as
good as advertised,” Washington linebacker Ryan Kerrigan said. “I mean, how many
great plays did he make out there?” Quite a few. Griffin completed his first
eight passes and finished 19 of 26 with two touchdowns, no interceptions and a
passer rating of 139.9. He also scrambled for 42 yards. The ball Griffin threw
for his first TD was given to him after the game, and the 2011 Heisman Trophy
winner from Baylor cradled it while talking about what it meant to him to play
so well in his NFL debut and have Saints quarterback Drew Brees congratulate him
after the game. “You can win a high school state championship and a bowl game in
college, but to play in the NFL, the pinnacle of it all, and win your first game
against a Hall of Famer in Drew Brees, its at the top,” Griffin said. “After the
game, (Brees) told me he was proud of me. Thats big for him to say after he just
lost the game.” New Orleans hoped to open the season with a defiant show of
force in the wake of the bounty scandal that overshadowed its off-season. The
Saints also got a boost Friday when a three-member appeals panel reinstated
defensive end Will Smith and linebacker Jon Vilma, who had been suspended for
their roles in the Saints alleged pay-for-pain bounty program. Smith started,
while Vilma, deemed unfit to play after off-season knee surgery, received a
rousing ovation when he walked onto the field to lead the Saints traditional
pregame “Who-dat” chant. Instead of riding that emotional high, the Saints spent
much of the game trying to keep up with a Redskins offence powered by youth.
Griffins second touchdown pass went for 5 yards to receiver Aldrick Robinson, a
second-year pro making his NFL regular-season debut. Rookie Alfred Morris rushed
for 96 yards and two touchdowns, the first set up by safety Roman Harpers pass
interference penalty in the end zone and the second set up by DeJon Gomes
fourth-quarter interception, which he returned to the 4-yard line. Brees quickly
dismissed the idea that disruptions from the bounty probe, which resulted in a
season-long suspension for coach and offensive mastermind Sean Payton, was to
blame for New Orleans shaky start. “Not at all. Its the NFL. You better bring it
every week,” Brees said. “We knew the type of team they were. We knew the type
of defence they were. They just came in and played better than we did, made
fewer mistakes than we did, made more plays than we did.” In fact, Brees
expectations for the rest of the season were undiminished. “We lost the first
game of the year last year and finished 13-3,” Brees said. “So theres no doubt
that we can do it.” Brees still finished with 339 yards and three touchdowns,
including scoring passes of 33 yards to Lance Moore and 20 yards to Jimmy Graham
and 2 yards to Darren Sproles. The Saints also scored a less conventional TD
when Martez Wilson blocked Sav Roccas punt deep in Redskins territory and
Courtney Roby scooped up the ball to make it 20-14 shortly before halftime.
Sproles score with 2:25 left in the game pulled the Saints back within a TD and
2-point conversion, and the Saints got the ball one last time with 22 second to
go, but Brees desperation pass was intercepted by Reed Doughty near the Redskins
goal line as time ran out. That marked the second interception for Brees, who in
2011 completed a single-season record 71.2 per cent of his passes, but managed
to hit on only 46 per cent (24 of 52) against Washington. “That makes you
angry,” Brees said, raising his eyebrows and shaking his head. “Were better than
that and were going to be better than that.” NOTES: Saints CB Johnny Patrick
hurt his right leg breaking up a pass in the second quarter. ... WR
Devery Henderson left the game in the second half after taking a shot to the
head. ... Saints LB Scott Shanle left the game with an unspecified leg injury.
... Garcon went out with a right foot injury. ... Redskins S Jordan Bernstine
hurt his right knee on kick coverage. Reggie Bush Jersey . Major League Soccer
punished Robson for “aggravated dissent” on an assistant referee in stoppage
time during Wednesdays 2-0 home loss to underdog FC Dallas. Jake Long Jersey . Monta Ellis had 25 points
and nine assists to lead the Bucks to a 95-90 victory over the scrappy Bobcats
on Friday night. http://www.dolphinsteamstore.com/karlos-dansby-jerseys
. A sixth-round draft pick in 2011, Sash had 17 tackles in 16 games for the
Giants last season. He will be eligible to return to the Giants active roster on
October 1 following the teams Week 4 contest against the Philadelphia Eagles. Dan Marino Jersey . The Oklahoma City Thunder
may just have to get ugly if they hope to make it a series. The Thunder have
struggled to corral a San Antonio offence that is clicking on all cylinders
during a 20-game winning streak, the longest any NBA team has been able to
maintain into the playoffs. Cameron Wake Jersey . The Russians put on a
clinical attacking display Friday, scoring two goals in each half in a 4-1 win
over the Czech Republic in Group A. Post-victory, Advocaats only regret was that
the score wasnt higher. ATLANTA —Chipper Jones rounded third base, took one
look at his grinning teammates surrounding home plate and flung his batting
helmet into the air before jumping into the welcoming party. The moment Jones
said hell savour in retirement came after a dramatic homer that can help his
chances of one more post-season. Jones hit a three-run homer off
Jonathan Papelbon with two outs in the ninth inning, capping a five-run rally
that sent the Atlanta Braves over the Philadelphia Phillies 8-7 on Sunday. The
switch-hitting Jones was swinging as a left-handed hitter when he saw three
straight fastballs from Papelbon. Jones pulled the third pitch deep into the
right-field seats. Then came the celebration every player cherishes—none more
than the 40-year-old Jones, who is retiring after the season. “In that mob scene
at the plate, you kind of get lost in it, time kind of stands still,” Jones
said. “Youre not really thinking about any of that other stuff. Youre just
thrilled that you won a game. “Nothing beats that. Thats as good as it gets.”
Jones has two game-ending homers this season, both against the Phillies. On May
2 in Atlanta, his 11th-inning, two-run shot gave the Braves a 15-13 win. This
win was more important, because the Braves appeared bound for their fourth
straight loss. There was growing talk the team could stage of repeat of its
collapse in September of 2011 when it blew a wild-card lead. The 2011 collapse
ended with three straight home losses to the Phillies. Talk of another September
failure would have grown if the Braves had been swept. Instead, they boosted
their status as the NL wild-card leader. “This is something I think we need
right here,” Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. “This is something to get the
team going again and get the juices flowing again. “He came through again. ...
Its unbelievable.” The Phillies led 7-1 after three innings and carried a
four-run advantage into the ninth. The Braves rallied against Jeremy Horst and
Papelbon (3-6). Reed Johnson singled off Horst with one out for his third hit
and Paul Janish walked. Papelbon struck out pinch hitter Lyle Overbay before
walking Michael Bourn to load the bases. Martin Prados grounder skipped past
third baseman Kevin Frandsen for a two-run double, setting the stage for Jones
14th home run. The bloown save was the fourth in 35 chances for Papelbon, who
said he didnt regret throwing three straight fastballs.dddddddddddd “I threw the
pitch I wanted,” Papelbon said. “Im the pitcher. I throw the pitch I want.” The
Phillies would have climbed to within four games of .500 and within seven games
of the wild-card leaders with a win. Instead, they could only stare as Jones
circled the bases. “It was sitting right there for us,” said Phillies manager
Charlie Manuel. “We couldnt finish it off.” “It was set up perfect for us. We
didnt get it done. ... We won the series but so what? We had a chance to sweep.
We need to win every game we can. ” Papelbon refused to overstate the impact of
one loss. “I wouldnt say its a crushing loss,” Papelbon said. “Weve had a lot of
losses this year. Weve had a lot of chances to sweep teams.” Peter Moylan (1-0)
got one out for his first win in his comeback from a torn right labrum and
rotator cuff. He was added to the roster on Saturday. Eric Kratz hit a three-run
double and Ryan Howard drove in two runs with a double as the Phillies took a
5-0 lead against Paul Maholm. Pitcher Cole Hamels added a two-run double in the
third as the Phillies made it 7-1. Hamels gave up three runs on six hits and two
walks in six innings. Maholm left without recording an out in the third inning
for his shortest start of the season. He gave up seven runs on six hits and
three walks. The Phillies hit six doubles, including three in the big first
inning. Johnson drove in three runs for Atlanta. He had an RBI double in the
second and a two-run single in the sixth. Bourn made a leaping catch at the
centre-field wall on a drive by Chase Utley to open the sixth. NOTES: The
Phillies recalled RHP Justin De Fratus and LHP Jake Diekman from Triple-A Lehigh
Valley. ... Braves SS Andrelton Simmons, who has been on the disabled list since
July 13 with a broken right little finger, will begin a rehab assignment at
Double-A Mississippi on Monday. Gonzalez said Si