Redskins Have Good “bye”; Major League Playoffs Bring Big Surprises


October 12, 2011
Ceci Ferrara
Sports Writer
Sports Insider

It was the best day of football the Redskins could ask for, short of winning a game of course. With two of their division rivals losing big games on Sunday, the Redskins are now alone at the top of the NFC East – something no one, not even Mike Shanahan, could have predicted.

The Giants had a chance to take the lead away in a game they were heavily favored to win.  Hosting the struggling Seattle Seahawks at home in East Rutherford, NJ, the Giants could have used home field advantage and the Skins bye week to pull ahead in the division standings. But what should have been an easy win for the Giants turned into a battle to the bitter end. Instead of scoring a TD to push the game into overtime, Eli Manning threw a last minute interception – which Seattle’s Brandon Browner returned for a 94-yard pick six. Instead of 4-1, the Giants are now 3-2, giving Dallas an opportunity to tie their record next week, and the Redskins to pull even further ahead.

Philly, meanwhile, has been the division’s biggest surprise – and not in a good way. What was appearing to become the NFL’s “dream team” in the (short) off-season has been downright disappointing.  At 1-4, they have no one to blame but themselves. Michael Vick threw a career high four interceptions during Sunday’s matchup with the Bills, while the defense allowed 31 points.  Despite their poor record and underwhelming playing so far this season, don’t expect the Eagles to go down easy when they come to Washington next week. Andy Reid doesn’t like to lose, and Vick has shown the world that he doesn’t give up. They both have a lot to prove and are looking to turn this season around ASAP. Warning: it could get ugly.


Having knocked off the Yankees in the ALDS, the Tigers, armed with strong pitching, looked poise to make a strong start in the ALCS.  But going into Game 3, they’re already down two games to none, with even their star righty Justin Verlander unable to silence the Rangers’ bats. After losing Game 1 by just one point (3-2), the Tigers were able to give Texas a run for their money in Game 2. After nine innings the score was tied 3-3. The two teams played through the 10th and top of the 11th, before Texas outfielder Nelson Cruz crushed a grand slam in the bottom of the inning to win the game.  It seemed fitting that the player, who at his last at bat was hit by a pitch and fell to the ground in pain, won the game in spectacular fashion. With the Rangers two games away from their second consecutive World Series appearance, they will head to Detroit for Game 3. Both teams are playing on no rest; they lost their travel day due to the Sunday game rain delay.

With the Brewers in their second playoff appearance – well, ever – the stakes are high as they face off against the Cardinals in the National League Championship Series. After beating the Phillies 1-0 in the NLDS decisive Game 5, some of the Milwaukee Brewers were too emotional to speak. After winning Game 1 of the NLCS, the Brewers were crushed by the bats of the St. Louis Cards, namely, Albert Pujols. The most recognizable face of the Cardinals organization proved just why that is on Monday night, with a homerun, three doubles and five RBI’s.  With a big 12-3 Game 2 win, the series will move to St. Louis for the next three games. With the series tied at a game apiece, it’s time for one team to pull away. With home field advantage, and Albert Pujols, the Cards might just have the upper hand.

T.O. hospitalized, denies overdose

Terrell Owens, according to sources at, was hospitalized last Thursday after paramedics were rushed to his apartment in Los Angeles.  Owens is denying that the incident involved a drug overdose — suicide or otherwise — and says that after a couple of medical procedures this year, including surgery, he will be back playing “in a month or less”.

Wendy Thompson contributed to this article.


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