The hype was handed to the Redskins by ESPN before the game and the game itself was handed to them by the New York Giants.
We all knew FedEx Field was going to be loud and we all knew how big of a game this was for the Giants as they try to repeat as NFC East Champions.
You knew it was going to be a frustrating night for Big Blue after the Redskins first touchdown in the first quarter. As RG3 went down to slide, the ball popped out as he was an inch off the ground and amazingly plopped into the arms of receiver Josh Morgan. He ran the ball in for a 13-yard Washington touchdown.
From there it was the classic style of the Giants playing not to lose. They came out firing by sending Hakeem Nicks and Victor Cruz deep early, than decided to back off in the second half.
Was keeping RG3 off the field by running the ball a key to the game? Yes. Do you force the run when it’s not working when you have a top tier quarterback throwing to top tier receivers? No.
Here was a stat I found that made me want to throw a brick through the television: two drives, 24 plays, twelve and a half minutes: THREE POINTS.
Last weeks red zone proficiency seems like a fluke now after another abysmal week of offensive display. Kevin Gilbride didn’t know what to throw at defensive coordinator Jim Haslett in the redzone as they shrunk the field with the zone defense.
He was very hesitant to let Eli and his receivers play pitch and catch which has worked for years. Then you have these forced draw plays with under five minutes to go on second down. Gee Coach Gibride, I wonder what was coming next?
Your quarterback has been the best in the fourth quarter for a few years now and has earned the “Captain Comeback” label. Put the ball in is hands.
By the way, the most misleading stat in professional football is kicker Lawrence Tynes leading the NFL in points. The guy can’t hit a field goal of more than 45 yards. He barley makes field goals longer than 38 yards as well. That 45-yard miss was atrocious and Tynes is not reliable whatsoever from long range.
He is 32-for-36 on the season, 24-for-24 from 20-39 yards. He is 7-of-9 on 40-of-49 and 1-of-3 on 50+.
Score touchdowns or the season is over.
Last thing to touch on is RG3 who has become a Hall of Famer overnight. He wasn’t that spectacular and he succeeds because of the offensive style. He was not accurate all night and in general cannot hit the short pass.
Another misleading stat is the consistent quarterback rating. Last night was the seventh time this season he has completed less than 20 passes and he’s only completed more than 20 three times.
Any quarterback with speed can pick up a first down if need be. I’m not taking anything away from Griffin who is a great talent and seems like a great person, but these offenses aren’t around long for a reason. It happened to Michael Vick and it’s happening to Cam Newton.
The Giants had the game plan to stop it, but as usual the players couldn’t execute. They still don’t know how to tackle. Give credit to ‘Skins running back Alfred Morris who after he fumbled ran the ball with authority and smacked the tired Giants defense in the mouth.
Most of Morris’ big gains came after contact; a true testament to his determination to win and the Giants being placed in the right spot but not making the play.
Perhaps a Hall of Fame quarterback on ESPN put it best last night. Steve Young said, “All the drama around RG3 and the hype is great, but when it comes down to it, the Giants played a bad game.”
Anybody who watched the game knows its true. The Giants let one they should have had slip away last night. They’ll need to come back strong as Drew Brees rolls into town next week. Brees’ record against the Giants is 4-0.