Cousins completed a deep strike to DeSean Jackson to give his team momentum on their opening possession. The home side went ahead five plays later when Cousins fired to Jordan Reed, who reached the ball over the goalline for the four-yard score.
New Orleans responded with a touchdown drive to level the scores as Drew Brees fired a series of short passes to take his team into the redzone before he picked out Brandin Cooks on a slant in the endzone.
Jamison Crowder ensured that the Redskins would retake the lead on their next drive as he collected an 11-yard pass from Cousins in the endzone after beating the attentions of his marker.
The Saints would come back once again as Brees lofted a pass over the middle of the field for Cooks to snag in the open field and the wideout sprinted the rest of the way to the endzone for a 60-yard score.
However, Washington regained the lead within a minute when Matt Jones collected a simple pass from Cousins and then beat several tackles from the Saints defense to run all the way for a 78-yard touchdown.
Dustin Hopkins extended the home side's advantage when he added two close-range field goals just before the break to give the Redskins a 13-point lead at the break.