The New York Giants defense came into the Week 7 matchup against the Washington Redskins riding high after shutting down the San Francisco 49ers. The Giants defense didn’t play especially well, but they didn’t break against Alfred Morris and Robert Griffin III.
The Giants surrendered 248 yards rushing to the Redskins. However, the Giants recovered three fumbles and intercepted one pass in the second half. It turned out that was the only way the Giants could stop the Redskins today.
In typical Giants fashion, the Giants were playing from behind as late as 1:38 in the fourth quarter after the Redskins took a 23-20 lead. However, Eli Manning and Victor Cruz finally were able to hook up on a deep pass, something that they had tried and failed three times before. The result was a 77-yard touchdown and the 27-23 win.
This was not a great day for the defense overall but when they needed something to happen the most they were able to make it happen, getting key turnovers when absolutely necessary, including on the last Redskins possession when Santana Moss fumbled and Jayron Hosley recovered.
Despite the turnovers, the Giants defense looked like it had no answer for Robert Griffin III or Alfred Morris. Morris had over 100 yards by halftime and ended the day with 120. Griffin finished with 89 yards on the ground. Whenever the Redskins needed a conversion on third or fourth down they came up with it. The Giants just had no answer, even allowing Griffin to convert a 4th and 10 situation on a pass to Logan Paulsen.
The Giants needed this win as badly as any team going into a game with a 4-2 record needed a game. There was no way the Giants could start the year 0-3 in the division. A loss to the Redskins would have put the Giants into second place.
Once again, the Giants leave a win with work to do before their next game. Last week it was leaving the red zone with touchdowns. This week it is the defense that needs some work. At least the Giants defensive line started to show up, recording three sacks, all of them in key situations.
With the Dallas Cowboys up next week the Giants won’t have much of a respite. They will need to bring their best down to Dallas as the Giants’ schedule doesn’t get any easier from here on out. One thing is certain, they won’t be able to walk away from many games with the win if they continue to allow over 200 yards rushing.