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Dustin Hopkins Provides Advantage Against Eagles

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In a game in which Eagles kicker Caleb Sturgis missed a chip shot field goal attempt and an extra point attempt, Dustin Hopkins provided the Redskins 11 points.

The Washington Redskins' 23-20 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday certainly couldn't have happened if Pierre Garçon didn't make a tough, game-winning catch in the end zone.

But the Redskins wouldn't have even been in that position in the first place had it not been for kicker Dustin Hopkins.

The Washington Redskins on Monday, Sept. 14, announced the signing of kicker Dustin Hopkins. Take a look at his NFL career in photos.

In a back-and-forth game between the division rivals, each team's offense clicked on all cylinders at some point, and the same can be said of the defensive units at certain points of the game.

But it was clear the Redskins had the advantage in the kicking game, as Dustin Hopkins nailed all three of his field goal attempts and his two extra point attempts, while his Eagles counterpart, Caleb Sturgis, missed a 33-yard field goal just before halftime and even pushed one of his three extra point attempts wide of the uprights.

"It was a little sloppy and that wind was tricky," Hopkins said of the conditions. "It would be semi-consistent one way for a handful of minutes and then go back. I was just fortunate enough where I played it the right way."

Hopkins has been perfect on field goal and extra point attempts for the Redskins since signing with the team before their Week 2 game against the St. Louis Rams.

Despite having never attempted a regular season field goal before lining up for a 46-yard attempt in the first quarter of the Redskins' 24-10 victory over the Rams, Hopkins hasn't looked like a player that's taken three years to find a home in the NFL, as he's now 6-for-6 on field goals.

In situations like the one he faced Sunday, when the wind was whipping around FedExField, he uses his warmups to help gauge conditions, making his 11 points scored in the game that much more impressive.

"I'll base it [the wind] off of what the flags are doing in pregame, and try to see if they're similar and see if things changed or not," Hopkins said. "I try to watch all punts and field goals during the game to see if I can get a read on what's going on. That's how I stay up on it and you hope it doesn't switch by the time you start your course to the ball."

As for Sturgis, who signed with the Eagles prior to their Week 4 game, his mistakes -- whether it was jitters trying to impress his new team or failing to read the conditions properly -- cost Philadelphia in the end.

If the Eagles ultimately decide to cut ties with Sturgis after his struggles, Hopkins has been in his shoes before, having been cut by the Buffalo Bills and New Orleans Saints before finding a home in Washington.

"That's a bad spot to be in," Hopkins said. "Caleb's done well in the league [for years]. He's a good kicker. It's just one of those days."

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