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Preseason Week 1: Redskins vs. Falcons RECAP

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HogsHaven recaps the Week 1 preseason action as the Redskins take on the Falcons in Atlanta, Georgia. Who will emerge as the Mason/Brennan front runner?

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

1st Quarter

Woo, Redskins football is finally back. The Burgundy & Gold receive the kickoff, 2016 NFL football is officially underway.

Cousins picks up where he lefts off, looking in control and efficient. He leads the team down the field but the drive is cut short by penalties. McCoy will take the field on the next drive. He finishes the night 5/5 for 39 yards.

The 1st-team defense looks aggressive and fast. Coverage and tackling is good enough to keep Matt Ryan without a completion after two drives.

Colt McCoy takes the field and leads the Redskins down into Falcons territory and drops a dime to Vernon Davis in the corner of the endzone, but Davis drops it. Redskins settle for a field goal, which Hopkins drills. 3-0 Redskins.

The Redskins and Falcons trade punts while the first quarter ends with the Falcons' 2nd-team unit, led by Matt Schaub, on the field.

2nd Quarter

Aldrick Robinson abuses Quinton Dunbar for a 47-yard pass completion from Matt Schaub. Dunbar had horrible position which turned a potential INT into a big play. The Falcons will miss an opportunity for a wide-open TD to Freeman several plays later, and settle for the field goal. Game is tied 3-3.

The Redskins are beset by sloppy penalties. Falcons get the ball back and immediately hit Aldrick Robinson again for a 68-yard completion. Guess who's in coverage? Quinton Dunbar. The Falcons score on a 1-yard run from Wilds. 10-3 Falcons.

More sloppy penalties end the next Redskins drive, and the Falcons put together a long drive down the field. 2nd-year player Martrell Spaight and rookie Su'a Cravens both make several nice plays against the run. Both have good instincts and are natural tacklers. Cravens is quick to shoot through gaps and meet the runner in the backfield. Falcons end up kicking another field goal. 13-3 Falcons.

3rd Quarter

Falcons start the 2nd half by returning the kickoff 101 yards for a touchdown. Rookie JD McKissic with the return. Jesus, special teams. 20-3 Falcons.

With 6th-round rookie QB Nate Sudfeld in the game, the Redskins' next drive stalls and they punt. The Falcons drive down the field, abusing our secondary, especially CB Jeremy Harris. Martrell Spaight makes two nice stops to force the Falcons to kick another field goal. 23-3 Falcons.

Back at the helm, Sudfeld delivers a beautiful throw to Logan Paulsen for 28 yards. That starts off a drive where our 3rd-team offensive line steamrolls gigantic lanes for 4th-string running back out of Tulane (my alma mater, baby!) Robert Kelley. Our run game finally gets going after 3 quarters of looking like dog crap. Kelley rips off 4 carries for 35 yards, including a 1-yard touchdown run. Redskins back in the game, 23-10.

4th Quarter

The Falcons have the ball, but free agent linebacker Terence Garvin lights up rookie Brandon Wilds to force the fumble. Redskins recover. Running back Mack Brown looks like the best of the bunch tonight as he picks up tough yards to move the team near the goal line. Sudfeld delivers a quick strike to TE Marcel Jensen for a 6-yard touchdown. 23-17 Falcons. It's a ball game!

After several stalled drives, Falcons make a couple plays, aided by more Washington penalties to get into field goal range. Backup kicker Nick Fields misses a 45-yard attempt, but the officials called a phantom "running into the kicker" penalty, so he gets another shot. He shanks a 39-yard attempt. Guess you're not making the team, kid.

Redskins have the ball back down 7 with 1:30 to play.

Sudfeld does his best to move the ball, but a holding penalty and conservative defensive play calling by Atlanta prevent him from advancing the chains. The game ends on a 4th-down sack where the line collapsed quickly. Atlanta wins, 23-17.

Mason/Brenner Front-runners after Preseason Week 1: Martrell Spaight, Nate Sudfeld, Robert Kelley