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Eagles use OT to upend Redskins Anderson's field goal secures 37-34 win


PHILADELPHIA -- The Philadelphia Eagles followed their usual script against the Washington Redskins yesterday except that they added a different twist at the end.

The Eagles, who had beaten the Redskins five straight times in games decided in the last 46 seconds of regulation, needed 10 minutes of overtime to subdue the Redskins, 37-34, on Gary Anderson's 35-yard goal before 65,498 fans at Veterans Stadium. The Eagles' six victories -- all by margins of four points or fewer -- have been decided by a combined total of 19 points, but this game was more one-sided than the score indicated.

The Eagles had a 30-19 edge in first downs and a 524-293 margin in total yardage, but the Redskins kept it close on the returns of Brian Mitchell.

Mitchell returned a punt 59 yards for a touchdown and a pair of kickoffs 44 and 42 yards before the Eagles resorted to squib and out-of-bounds kicks to keep the ball out of his hands.

In the game that lasted 3:44 and featured 159 offensive plays, the Redskins scored the last 10 points of regulation to tie it, 34-34, on Eddie Murray's 46-yard field goal with 52 seconds remaining.

The Redskins won the toss in overtime, but were forced to punt after gaining two first downs. A 36-yard punt by Matt Turk pinned the Eagles back on their 9, but the Redskins' defense failed one last time.

The Eagles went 73 yards as quarterback Rodney Peete converted three third-down plays along the way. The last one was a 16-yard pass to Fred Barnett, who beat Darrell Green, on a third-and-8 play from the Eagles' 47. That put the ball on the Redskins' 31, and Ricky Watters, who gained 139 yards in 25 carries, ran 11 and 2 yards on the next two plays to get to the Washington 18.

The Redskins then waived in Anderson for the game-winner.

It was a devastating loss for the Redskins, who were attempting to reach .500 at the six-game mark for the first time since coach Joe Gibbs quit after the 1992 season, but are now 2-4.

They've yet to win two straight games since Gibbs left and are 9-29 overall since he departed.

It was particularly disappointing for the Redskins because they thought they turned the corner when they upset the Dallas Cowboys last week.

Instead, their defense, ranked 25th in the league against the rush, was shredded by Watters and Charlie Garner, who gained 120 yards on nine carries including a 55-yard touchdown sweep. Garner had three touchdowns as the Eagles rushed for 272 yards.

"It's embarrassing," linebacker Ken Harvey said of the Redskins' poor play on defense.

The 524 yards of offense are the most the Eagles have gotten since they racked up 574 yards against coach Mike McCormack's 2-14 Baltimore Colts team in 1981.

The Redskins may have suffered a letdown after the Dallas game, but coach Norv Turner said, "I don't know how to measure that."

He added: "You're not going to be as ready all 16 weeks, that natural. It's hard to be at your absolute best [every week]."

Turner said the Dallas win may have raised expectations.

"After a game like last week [people say] the Redskins all of a sudden are a lot better than they are because they beat Dallas and the Cowboys are a lot worse than they are because they lost to the Redskins. Neither one of those is probably true. We're both what we are. We're working as hard as we can to get better. We had a great performance [against Dallas]. We didn't have a great performance today," he said.

Turner said Gus Frerotte will remain the starter next Sunday in Phoenix, but he lost a fumble, had a pass intercepted and was sacked three times.

The only Redskin who had a superb game was Mitchell, who spread his arms in frustration at the Eagles' bench when they started kicking away from him.

"I said, 'Be men and kick the ball and [try to] stop us. Don't kick the ball out of bounds,' " Mitchell said.

It was a significant win for Philadelphia, which is 3-3 and has won two straight games since Peete replaced Randall Cunningham at quarterback.

Nobody savored it more than center Raleigh McKenzie, one of the three ex-Redskins on the Eagles.

"I can come back and holler at the guys, put my chest out and smile. It makes the heart a little warmer on the inside," McKenzie said.

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