There was no time for Redskins running back Alfred Morris to think. Just 46 seconds after the Baltimore Ravens had tied the score of Sunday’s contest at FedEx Field, Morris put the football on the ground. Again.
It was the second time in two games that a Morris fumble led to points for the opposition. Last week it was a third quarter fumble that allowed the New York Giants to kick a field goal. This time Baltimore quarterback Joe Flacco needed just three plays to find wide receiver Anquan Boldin in the end zone for a touchdown and a 21-14 lead.
And so a rookie who had fumbled just twice all season through the first 11 weeks of the season – and lost just one of those – suddenly had to deal with two in as many games. Some rookies might have shrunk from the responsibility. Morris appears to be made of sterner stuff. He still finished with 122 rushing yards on 23 carries, surpassed the team record for most carries by a rookie in one season and had a first-quarter touchdown that put Washington up 14-7.
“I learned a lesson a long time ago back in college, my fullback coach in college, he said you got to have a short-term memory to play this game,” Morris said. “We all make mistakes and, yeah, it’s unfortunate and they even got points off it. It’s terrible. But at the same time there’s a lot more game to be played. That happened early on in the game and if I hung my head I wouldn’t be able to go out there and help my team out.”
But now that the game is over and the win is in the bank, Morris admits he has all week to stew over the fumbles and find some way to correct the issue. The turnover came when he ran towards the left side, gaining three yards before Baltimore lineman Ma’ake Kemoeatu knocked the ball from his grasp. Linebacker Paul Kruger was there to recover for the Ravens.
“That’s just unacceptable. I hold myself at a higher standard,” Morris said. “I definitely don’t use it for fuel. I’m just a hard runner. That’s what I am. I’m a workhorse. If anything, fumbling makes me mad and I learned a long time ago I can’t play angry. That’s just not the type of person I am. It only hurts me more.”
Follow Brian McNally on Twitter at @bmcnally14.