With 88 yards in the first 33 minutes of play, Redskins running back Tim Hightower was closing in on one of the greatest statistical performances of his career.
On the Redskins first drive of the second half, the offense drove down the field to the Carolina 36-yard line. On first-and-10, Hightower took a handoff to his left, cut back up the field to his right, and his knee gave out.
Helped up by the Redskins medical staff several minutes later, Hightower tried to put weight on it and looked visibly frustrated by the pain.
“I’m very passionate about what I do,” he said after the game. “In a situation like that, when you kinda feel helpless, you’re not able to help your team and you’re not able to do what you were brought here to do, it’s a terrible feeling.”
“I was a little frustrated–a little stubborn–because I just have too much fight in me,” he continued. “Being on the sideline and not being able to be in there with your guys–they’re putting it out there on the line.”
Despite carrying the offense in the first half, Hightower’s job had only just begun when he left the game. After watching his teammates fall to .500, he addressed the team in the locker room after the game, to remind them of their preseason goals.
“We play this game for one reason: to win,” he related to the media after the game. “We want to focus. Regardless, we’re still in the hunt. Whether we were 6-0 at this point, or whether we were 1 and whatever, we’re still in the hunt right now. We still have our goal in front of us and we still have the ultimate goal, and that’s what we’re going to keep working to.”
Hightower had the undivided attention of the team, and implored them to dig deeper to find the answer.
“We’re going to come back,” he said. “I don’t think it’s time for anyone to get discouraged. I think it’s time for us to stay motivated and stay hungry, and to just go back to work. Whether we won this game or lost this game, we’ve got to show up to work Monday.”
He continued: “Regardless of what happens outside the locker room, I know every guy in this locker room still believes in what we can do, in the team that we can be. We’ve got to show it.”
Hightower reached out to fans this afternoon, to thank them for the support that he’s been shown: