Both the New York Giants and Washington Redskins went into their Monday night battle knowing it would dramatically alter their direction for the remainder of the season. For the Giants, a win would put them in prime position to win the NFC East, while a win for the Redskins would pull them within one game of the division lead. Throughout the week the mantra on each side was the same: the team who wants it more will walk away victorious.
When the smoke finally cleared, it was Robert Griffin III and the Washington Redskins standing tall … barely. But a win is a win in the NFL, and the Giants now face a brutal four-game schedule with no chance at finishing better than 3-3 in their division.
This is Giants football … but you never get used to it.
- Eli Manning – Eli did just miss two huge pass plays, but had one of his better games in quite some time. He was making impossible throws into tight spaces with incredible precision.
- Keith Rivers – It's tantalizing to watch Rivers when he's healthy. He came up big on a number of plays, was extremely physical all night and showed that he can be impactful for the Giants … if he stays healthy.
- Chase Blackburn – He'll never be confused for a supreme athlete, but Blackburn has a knack for coming up big in big moments. He did that again on Monday night when he forced a fumble, stopping an impressive Redskins drive before they reached the endzone.
- Ahmad Bradshaw – Bradshaw seemed determined to give this game his all from the moment he left the tunnel. He ran physically and resembled the player he was pre-foot injuries.
- Route Running – Although the wide receivers had a very solid statistical game, some of their routes left a lot to be desired. More than just 3rd down routes run short of the first-down marker, there was some miscommunication at times that led to missed opportunities, or in the case of Rueben Randle, an intentional grounding penalty.
- Drops – There were too many. Period.
- Penalties – Could the Giants have shot themselves in the foot any more than they did? It was relentless from start to finish.
- Jim Cordle – Speaking of penalties, Cordle had two holding penalties on kickoffs that resulted in drives starting inside the 10.
- ESPN Broadcast – Ignoring the fact that Jon Gruden forgets names like no ones business, could there have been more commercials?
- Injuries – Sean Locklear was carted off with what appeared to be a serious leg injury late in the fourth quarter.
- Prince Amukamara – The Prince is getting better each and every week, and that was never more evident than his open-field tackle on Santana Moss for -1 yard. However, there are times where he leaves the receiver with entirely too much cushion. There were several instances tonight where the Skins were able to get an easy 5-7 yards by throwing at his cushion.
- Defensive line – Defending against the Pistol offense is a difficult thing to do … especially when you're typically aggressive. It was pretty bad at times and not so bad at others. All in all, it was about what you would expect playing a college offensive system with professional players.
Also…Ahmad Bradshaw, Chase Blackburn, Eli Manning, Football, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Prince Amukamara