鈥?Allowing 68 points over the past two games was just what the Washington Redskins’ defense needed to get fired up.Motivated after two consecutive efforts players called embarrassing Saints Elite Jerseys , the Redskins kept the Arizona Cardinals out of the end zone in a 20-15 victory on Sunday.Linebacker Preston Smith and second-year defensive lineman Anthony Lanier led the defensive effort by bothering Arizona quarterback Blaine Gabbert with sacks, forced fumbles and interceptions.“We all were going extra hard because we were so disappointed,” said Lanier, who sacked Gabbert twice and batted down three passes.“Everybody has been talking about it all year about how we have to come together. Today we came together and we overcame the odds of everybody thinking we were out of it.”Gabbert was 16 of 41 for 189 yards with the interception and a fumble he recovered himself in the fourth quarter.Arizona (6-8), which got all its points on field goals by Phil Dawson, went 0 for 6 in the red zone and 4 for 19 on third down as it was eliminated from playoff contention.“It was just a game of missed opportunities,” Gabbert said. “That falls on me. The lack of execution from me all day, that just can’t happen. We were inches away on a bunch of plays, but at the end of the day I have to make those. We have to score touchdowns in the red zone. We can’t come away with field goals like that.”Quarterback Kirk Cousins was 18 of 26 for 196 yards with touchdown passes to Jamison Crowder and new running back Kapri Bibbs as Washington (6-8) ended its two-game skid. Coach Jay Gruden said Cousins was fine after talking a few hard hits late.The Redskins’ defense delivered big hits on Gabbert all game long. Smith recovered Gabbert’s fumble and had an interception in what was a redemptive performance after losses to the Dallas Cowboys and Los Angeles Rams.“The Dallas game and the L.A. game were both pretty darn bad defensively,” linebacker Ryan Kerrigan said. “We didn’t hardly see their punter till the second half last week. This week was much-needed. Good on us for not allowing them in the end zone.”DRIVE FOR FIVEDawson made all five of his field goal attempts, connecting from 40, 35, 19, 34 and 32 yards. Dawson has scored the Cardinals’ past 30 points going back to their Dec. 3 game against the Rams.“That is a lot Authentic Jalyn Holmes Jersey ,” Dawson said. “I didn’t realize that. But that’s life.”RECOVERED KICKEven though coach Bruce Arians didn’t call for an onside kick to start the second half, the Cardinals got the ball back in excellent field position. Dawson’s kickoff bounced deep in Washington territory and when no Redskins player fielded it, Budda Baker recovered at the 22.“Uh, I mean, it’s not that good of odds,” Baker said. “But Phil’s a great kicker, and that’s a great kick. So initially we were just going to lob it to the left and see if they catch it. But they didn’t catch it.”Gruden said special teams ace Niles Paul thought the ball would bounce to him, but went the other way.SACKMASTER JONESArizona linebacker Chandler Jones earned his NFL-leading 15th sack of the season during the first half as he continued to make a case to be NFL Defensive Player of the Year. With two games remaining, he’s two shy of setting the franchise record for sacks in a season.INJURIESCardinals: WR Brittan Golden broke his right arm on a punt return. … DL Robert Nkemdiche left with a wrist injury. … LB Karlos Dansby suffered a calf injury. … DL Josh Mauro was inactive with an ankle injury.Redskins: Rookie LB Ryan Anderson suffered a sprained knee in punt coverage. Anderson came in dealing with an ankle injury. … LT Trent Williams missed his fourth game of the season with a knee injury. … LB Zach Brown, who came in leading the league with 127 tackles, was inactive with toe, hip and Achilles tendon injuries.QUOTABLECardinals coach Bruce Arians: “We’re not playing for the playoffs, we’re playing for each other.”Gruden: “I never really want to use 8-8 as motivation.”UP NEXTCardinals: Host the New York Giants next Sunday.Redskins: Host the Denver Broncos next Sunday. Daniel Carlson's career-best field goal at Auburn was 56 yards. His confidence range indoors reaches 65. During pre-draft training in the high altitude of his home state Colorado, he said Carolina Panthers Jerseys Womens , even a 75-yard kick was makeable.
The Minnesota Vikings were so enamored with that strong leg they used a fifth-round pick on the 6-foot-5, 213-pound Carlson, a bold enough move to suggest he'll be the place kicker this season and not incumbent Kai Forbath.
No matter how big of a boom Carlson delivers on the ball, though, what matters the most is how accurate he can be from those less-impressive and more-critical distances. The shorter kicks that the Vikings have seen missed too many times over the past five years.
"I'm a 6-foot-5 kicker, which is pretty rare. That does help having those long levers to hopefully get a couple touchbacks and some longer kicks here and there," Carlson said. "But at the end of the day it's the kicks inside of 50 that really are going to make or break a season or make or break you."
The Vikings re-signed Forbath in March. In 25 games since he replaced the struggling Blair Walsh, Forbath has missed eight extra points. He also pulled a couple of 39-yard field goals wide in 2017. Though he came through down the stretch with several important makes, including three field goals in the playoff game win over New Orleans, Forbath clearly didn't gain the full trust of the coaching staff and front office.
"The whole objective right now at this point is to create the most competitive 90-man roster that you can, regardless of position," general manager Rick Spielman said last weekend after making Carlson the 167th overall selection.
When the Vikings drafted Walsh in the sixth round in 2012, they released reliable incumbent Ryan Longwell the day after the rookie minicamp was complete. The same scenario played out in 2013 with punter Jeff Locke, a fifth-round pick Ronald Jones II Jersey , and his outspoken predecessor, Chris Kluwe. For now, the Vikings have said they'll keep the competition open. Still, a fifth-rounder is a high price for a specialist.
"Kai's done really good this spring," coach Mike Zimmer said. "So we're just going to let them go out there and kick."
Carlson made all 198 extra points he attempted in college, albeit from 20 yards and not 33 yards, to set an SEC record. He went 92 for 114 on field goals. Factor in a strong performance at the Senior Bowl in January, and the Vikings were interested. They sent special teams coordinator Mike Priefer to Auburn for one of five private workouts Carlson conducted after the scouting combine, and Carlson and Priefer immediately hit it off.
Carlson was one of the eight draftees among 66 players assembled by the Vikings for workouts this weekend, including 31 players invited on a tryout basis.
The 17 college free agents signed earlier this week included cornerback Holton Hill from Texas and linebacker Hercules Mata'afa of Washington State, considered two of the top undrafted players. Among the unsigned prospects aiming to follow the lead of Marcus Sherels in 2010 and Adam Thielen in 2013, as tryout players who earned a contract after the rookie minicamp and eventually made the team, are safety Mackenro Alexander of Iowa State, the twin brother of Vikings cornerback Mackensie Alexander; Northern Illinois wide receiver Chad Beebe Rashaan Evans Jersey Elite , the son of former Buffalo Bills standout Don Beebe; and quarterback Matt Linehan from Idaho, the son of former Vikings and current Dallas Cowboys offensive coordinator Scott Linehan.
None of these players, even first-round cornerback Mike Hughes, carry the potential to impact the Vikings in 2018 as much as Carlson.
"I knew what I was coming into, and I'm excited to get to work," said Carlson, a three-time Lou Groza Award finalist and the SEC special teams player of the year for the last two seasons. "Hopefully, I'll prove to these coaches and the rest of this team that I deserve to be here."
Make those high-pressure kicks, and they'll quickly develop that respect.
"You kind of figure it out with a little maturity and handling those big moments," Carlson said, "but I think as a kicker that's what we're supposed to live for."