By Curt Macysyn
Buoyed by their first victory of the season over the Houston Texans, the New York Giants came into the game with division rivals, the Washington Redskins, with a renewed confidence. With the Redskins reeling from a tough loss to the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday, as well as a plethora of injuries on both sides of the ball, the Giants took advantage of the circumstances to beat up on home team 45-14 before a national television audience.READ MORE: Strome, Panarin Lead Rangers To Win Over Blackhawks
The G-men were able to even their record at 2-2, while the loss dropped the Redskins to 1-3 on the season. Eli Manning tossed four touchdown passes, three to tight end Larry Donnell, and he rushed for another, as Big Blue’s transition to the West Coast offense was finalized with emphasis. Washington quarterback Kirk Cousins suffered through an abysmal evening, chucking four interceptions to four different Giants’ defensive backs.
The offense will go only as far as quarterback Eli Manning takes them, and that fact was proven on Thursday night. Manning was given a tight pocket by his offensive line, and he was able to pick apart the Redskins’ secondary with four touchdown passes. In fact, Manning should have had a fifth TD pass, but wide receiver Rueben Randle did not secure a pass in the end zone that was knocked out of his hands, and linebacker Keenan Robinson was credited with an interception. Manning had a quarterback rating of 117.5 and also ran for a score early in the fourth quarter.
What else can you say about Larry Donnell? He has gone from fighting for a job to the top receiving threat on the team. Donnell hauled in seven passes on eight targets and had three touchdown catches. The tight end has four touchdowns on the season. Backup tight end Daniel Fells caught a touchdown pass for the second straight week. Victor Cruz shook off an early drop to catch six passes for 108 yards, but was held without a touchdown grab.
The rout was so complete that tight end Adrien Robinson caught his first pass of the season, and rookie running back Andre Williams hit pay dirt for the first time in his NFL career. Most of all, the Giants’ offensive line kept Manning relatively clean with only one sack by Ryan Kerrigan. With the imminent addition of first round pick Odell Beckham, Jr. to the wide receiver mix, the promise of Ben McAdoo’s offense can only get greater.
DEFENSE: BREAD MORE: New York Weather: CBS2’s 12/5 Sunday Morning Forecast
It was feast or famine for the Giants’ defense for much of the game. New York had four interceptions by four different defensive backs (Demps, Amukamara, McBride, Rolle), and the unit confused ‘Skins quarterback Kirk Cousins into bad throws. On the other side, defensive coordinator Perry Fewell should be concerned that his group gave up several big plays. Running back Alfred Morris reeled off a 20 yard run and also caught a 26 yard pass. Backup running back Roy Helu, Jr. grabbed a 36 yard reception, and wide receiver Andre Roberts had a too easy 18 yard touchdown reception. Tight end Niles Paul had 28 yard reception before he left with a concussion.
Trumaine McBride had a nice game for Big Blue, subbing for Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, who suffered a leg injury, with an interception and a forced fumble. Quintin Demps started at safety and besides his interception; he had seven tackles, taking the place of the benched Stevie Brown. Defensive end Mathias Kiwanuka had a beautiful speed rush around tackle Tyler Polumbus that resulted in a strip sack in the first quarter.
Defensive end Damontre Moore got another sack, and linebacker Jacquian Williams had nine tackles. Overall, however, New York needs to clean up the big plays moving forward, or else it will cost them in the long run.
SPECIAL TEAMS: B+
The Giants’ kickers may be the best duo in the NFL, as Josh Brown was perfect again on points after touchdown and a 29-yard field goal. Punter Steve Weatherford had five kicks for an average of 45.0 yards, but more importantly, Weatherford booted three balls inside the 20-yard line.
Return specialist Preston Parker had a nice kickoff return for 34 yards, but he also backed off a Tress Way punt that turned into a 77-yard boot. The Giants lost significant field position as a result of Parker’s bad decision. Parker did have a nice return that was nullified by a Damontre Moore holding penalty as well.
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Curt Macysyn has been covering the New York Football Giants for the past two seasons for Examiner.com. Born and raised in northern New Jersey, Curt has followed and covered the New York Metropolitan sports scene for 35 years. He attended Seton Hall Prep School in South Orange, NJ and is a graduate of Rutgers University, New Brunswick. His work can be found on aExaminer.com.