GIANTS 19 / REDSKINS 10
Giants head coach Ben McAdoo deserves a lot of credit. For the entire week he told anyone who would listen that he was going to take the Giants season finale in Washington extremely seriously and would not rest any key starters. It was an old school approach, and considering how many teams mailed it in on Sunday, it was an approach that was greatly appreciated.
As a result, the Giants supported their coach with an impressive 19-10 win over the Redskins knocking them out of the playoffs.
Defense Win the Day: The Giants defense was once again unbelievable. They held the Redskins to just 284 yards of offense and forced three turnovers. Kirk Cousins was brutal on Sunday. He was picked off twice and sacked four times in a crucial game for his football team. The Giants forced the Skins to punt the football five times in the entire first half, allowing them to get past mid-field only twice.
Late in the game, the Giants made Cousins' life miserable. Dominique Rodgers Cromartie had a huge interception of Cousins with 4:06 to go in the third quarter with the Giants holding onto a 10-3 lead. Then in the fourth quarter, after New York grabbed a 13-10 lead, Cromartie made another huge pick of Cousins at the Giants own 25 yard-line with 1:27 to go in the game. The Giants would finish the game with a fumble recovery for a touchdown to push the lead to nine.
Eli Manning and Company: Manning wasn't blowing anyone away statistically, but the Giants offense and their veteran quarterback were good when they needed to be. No play was bigger than the 44-yard strike from Manning to Tavarres King that helped set up Robbie Gould's go-ahead field goal.
Giants Ground Game: The Giants ground game came to life on Sunday. Paul Perkins led the way with 102 yards on the ground, and Big Blue ran for a season high 161 yards for the game. It was about time that this ground game got moving for Big Blue.
What's Next? The Giants are locked in as the number five seed and they will travel to Green Bay to play the Packers in the Wild Card game next Sunday at 4:40 p.m. on Fox. The Giants and Packers met earlier this year in Week 5 with Green Bay winning 23-16.
These two teams are much different now. The Packers are on a six-game winning streak with Aaron Rodgers playing at a Pro Bowl level. The Giants defense is playing at an All-Pro level that wasn't seen in October. This is the third time since 2007 that the Giants and Packers will meet in the playoffs. The previous two times were both in Green Bay, and each time the Giants won.