By Paul Dottino
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Say what you will about how the Giants have given away any realistic chances of making the postseason. They created the mess that has them at 5-7. Yet their come-from-behind 24-17 victory over the Washington Redskins proved coach Tom Coughlin’s team has no quit.
Trailing 14-0, they battled back to tie the game at halftime and then – after an Eli Manning interception allowed the Redskins to regain the lead in the third quarter – he led them on two fourth-quarter scoring drives to win the game.
It cannot go without mention that the Giants cleaned up their act with an even turnover ratio and committing just one penalty for 1 yard (offsides).
Offense — RB Andre Brown. The stats are not impressive but his contribution was significant. Brown carried 14 times for 35 yards and two touchdowns. He fought his way into the end zone, reaching the ball over the goalline while his leg rested on a Redskins defender for a 1-yard TD that put the Giants up, 21-17, with 14:26 to play. Midway into the second quarter, his 23-yard burst around the right side (with key blocks from David Diehl and John Conner) got the Giants within 14-7 and told the Redskins they were in for a fight.
Defense — DE Justin Tuck, FS Will Hill, MLB Jon Beason. We are giving out three defensive game balls for the first time ever. How can you leave out Tuck with a career-high four sacks or Beason for his 17 tackles or Hill for stealing the ball from WR Pierre Garcon on fourth down at the Giants 49 with 1:19 left?
Special teams — LB Mark Herzlich. He was a very strong in kick coverage with two solo tackles and two assist on returns that combined for 40 yards
Offense — LT Will Beatty. It was a tough game for him, thanks to LB Brian Orakpo’s two sacks. Orakpo used a speed rush on the Giants first snap to nail Eli Manning at the New York 12. Late in the third, Orakpo powered through Beatty to drill Manning on a third-and-8 back to the Giants 4 – helping to preserve a 17-14 edge
Defense — CB Prince Amukamara. He played well but dropped a sure third-down interception on a ball that hit him between the numbers in the end zone that allowed Washington to kick a 33-yard FG and take a 17-14 lead.
Special teams — WR Reuben Randle. We may be albeit picky, but 22 yards on three punt returns (plus a fair catch) is not very productive.
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