After seemingly moving the ball at will, the Washington Redskins saw their first drive of the game stall at the Cardinals’ 20 when Rex Grossman threw incomplete to Santana Moss.
There was some pushing and shoving after the play, enough to draw a 15-yard personal foul penalty on Cardinal Kerry Rhodes.
The man who started the scrum? Former Cardinal Tim Hightower, and he told the Washington Post he knew exactly what he was doing.
“It was just me being me, and me getting under those guys’ skin,” said Hightower, whom the Redskins acquired via trade with Arizona in July. “I practiced with those guys for three years, so I know exactly who I can press what buttons on. I got the outcome that I needed. I got the penalty for us. I wasn’t going to do anything to jeopardize the team. It was just me letting them know, it’s going to be a long day and we’re here to win.”
To be fair, the penalty didn’t cost the Cardinals anything but an extra couple of plays on defense. Adrian Wilson picked off Grossman three plays later, officially ending the drive.
However, it’s interesting that Hightower was able to bait his former teammates into a bad penalty. As a team the Cardinals need to be more in control than they were Sunday, as they accumulated 10 total penalties for 97 yards.
That won’t get it done, especially on the road.