Week 16 Game Recap: New York Giants 20, Washington Redskins 35
What you need to know
The New York Giants came into Washington looking for a repeat performance of their early season trouncing of the Redskins. Unfortunately for them, Santana Moss decided to explode for three scores, and Clinton Portis had his fourth straight 100 yard rushing game. The Giants matched the Redskins intensity, but as the game wore on through the second half, they couldnít match their scores.
Quarterback Eli Manning had an up and down day, throwing one score and one interception. He didnít complete a high percentage of his passes, but it wasnít particularly low either. He preferred to look to his two primary wide receivers, Amani Toomer and Plaxico Burress, but failed to hook up with them on many of his repeated long pass attempts. Toomer was the one who caught the score, although it was a pass intended for Burress that was tipped.
Running back Tiki Barber didnít have anywhere near the same amount of success as his last outing against Washington, managing only 80 yards on the ground. His performance was bolstered by a fourth quarter 31 yard run. He still managed to contribute heavily in the passing game.
The Giantsí defense scored on a Mark Brunell interception, but otherwise allowed the Redskins to do whatever they wanted. Both Redskinsí quarterbacks threw touchdowns, and Clinton Portis gained over 100 yards. As the game grew to its conclusion, the Giantsí deficit had increased, and the Redskins ran out the clock.
The Redskins continued their recent hot streak, winning their fourth straight game against division rival (and current leader) New York. They clearly had a game plan that focused on running the ball, passing out of play action, and stopping Tiki Barber. By all accounts they were very successful.
Quarterback Mark Brunell threw two first-half touchdowns, both to Santana Moss. He managed a very effective game, where he spent most of his time handing the ball off to Clinton Portis or Ladell Betts. Portis contributed his fourth straight 100 yard rushing game, and Betts added useful carries to both spell Portis and kill clock in the fourth quarter. Portis even threw a touchdown pass to tight end Chris Cooley.
Brunell left the game in the third quarter with a sprained knee. Backup Patrick Ramsey came in and the offense didnít miss a beat. Ramsey hit Moss for a 72 yard score (Mossí third of the game), and finished with over 100 yards and a high completion percentage. Moss was the true star of the game, averaging over 30 yards on his five receptions, with three total touchdowns.
The defense was solid, executing their game plan and preventing Giantsí running back Tiki Barber from controlling the game. They effectively forced Manning to attempt to win the game through the air, and were aided in this effort by the scores of the offense. They picked off Manning once, and also only sacked him one time, but kept the Giants from converting on several critical third downs. It was more than enough to win the game.
What you ought to know
|QB Eli Manning, Pass: 23 - 41 - 244 - 1 TD / 1 INT, Rush: 2 - 13 - 0|
Manning was forced to throw often due to game situations. He hooked up with Amani Toomer for his only touchdown of the day, although the pass was intended for Plaxico Burress and tipped to Toomer. His lone interception led to the Redskinsí third touchdown. His favorite targets were his receivers, Amani Toomer (14) and Plaxico Burress (eight).
|RB Tiki Barber, Pass: 0 - 1 - 0 - 0 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 16 - 80 - 0, Rec: 6 - 49 - 0 (7 targets)|
Barber didnít see nearly the same kind of success he had against the Redskins earlier in the season. He was held in check throughout much of the game, and then busted loose for a game high 31 yard gain in the fourth quarter. He contributed heavily in the passing game as well, even attempting a pass intended for Amani Toomer near the end zone. Barber didnít score in the game.
Jacobsí only rush came on the final play of the game.
Finn was a preferred target of Manning out of the backfield.
Toomer was the most effective receiver, and as such he saw the most targets by far. He caught a pass intended for and tipped by Burress, for a touchdown. Toomer made the tough grabs and converted first downs.
Burress was slow to get going in this game, and only managed catching less than half of his targets. He was Manningís second favorite target, but didnít have numbers that reflected it.
Carter had zero catches, and wasnít a factor in the game.
Shiancoe saw a bit more work than usual, with starter Shockey leaving the game temporarily.
Shockey left the game with an injury, but returned later. Oddly, he ended up being the Giantsí second most productive tight end in the game.
Feely made both of his PATs, and two field goals (of 47 and 38 yards). His 29 yard attempt in the third quarter was blocked.
The rush defense allowed Clinton Portis a score and his fourth straight 100 yard rushing game. The defense had to deal with a disproportionate number of rushes, as the Redskins led for most of the game.
The pass defense allowed several big plays. Santana Moss had three touchdown scores, two of which were long passes. They even allowed Clinton Portis to throw a touchdown to tight end Chris Cooley. On the bright side, Chase Blackburn intercepted Mark Brunell and returned it for a touchdown. The pass rush only totaled one sack. Both Mark Brunell and Patrick Ramsey had good success against the Giantsí pass defense.
|QB Mark Brunell, Pass: 7 - 11 - 112 - 2 TD / 1 INT, Rush: 2 - 8 - 0|
Brunell was extremely solid in this game. He didnít throw the ball much in his three quarters of action, but when he did throw, he did so effectively. He had two touchdown strikes to Santana Moss (for 17 and 59 yards each). He threw one costly interception that was returned for a touchdown in the first quarter. He was replaced by backup Patrick Ramsey in the third quarter when he sprained his knee.
Ramsey entered the game in the third quarter when starter Mark Brunell left with an injured knee. He looked extremely sharp. He complete most of his passes, and found Santana Moss for a 72 yard touchdown (Mossí third of the game). He led the Redskins to a 15 point victory, after only leading by four when he arrived.
|RB Clinton Portis, Pass: 1 - 1 - 17 - 1 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 27 - 108 - 1, Rec: 1 - 10 - 0 (1 targets)|
Portis did it all in this game. He caught a pass. He ran for over 100 yards. He even threw a touchdown to Chris Cooley. He was the Redskinsí offensive workhorse, finishing with 27 touches for 108 yards. He had a second half touchdown run that sealed the Redskinsí victory. He allowed the Redskinsí offense to use play action successfully, resulting in four passing touchdowns, and two for over 50 yards.
|RB Ladell Betts, Rush: 13 - 36 - 0, Rec: 1 - 9 - 0 (1 targets)|
Betts saw frequent carries to spell starter Clinton Portis. He was efficient if not particularly effective. He saw a large number of carries late in the game, once Portis got 100 yards and left the game.
Moss had a phenomenal game. He had three touchdown catches. The first was a wide receiver screen he turned into a 17 yard score. The other two were deep passes, one each from Brunell and Ramsey. He averaged over 30 yards a catch.
Brown rushed the ball once.
Cooley continued his recent hot streak, receiving the second most targets in the game. He caught a touchdown pass on a throw from running back Clinton Portis.
Royal ran well after his only catch, gaining a first down.
Hall was true on all five of his PATs.
The rush defense did a much better job against Tiki Barber than their first meeting of the season. Despite Barber breaking off a 31 yard gain in the fourth quarter, the defense kept him in check for the rest of the game. Overall, they allowed no touchdowns and Barber only finished with 80 yards.
The pass defense only sacked Manning once, but harassed him and knocked him down several other times. The pass defense was forced into action for much of the game, as the Giantsí trailed for a majority of the time, and attempted to pass their way back into contention. They only allowed one touchdown, and deflected pass that fell into Toomerís hands for a score. They also picked off Manning in the first half, and the resulting drive led to the Redskinsí third score of the game.