It was a game the Washington Redskins had to win to strengthen their playoff hopes.
The NFC East-leading New York Giants stood in the Redskins’ way in a nationally-televised game on Monday Night Football.
And in the end, the Redskins prevailed.
Washington won its third straight game tonight, defeating the Giants (7-5), 17-16, to get to .500 on the season at 6-6 and improve their hopes for a playoff spot.
The Redskins began the fourth quarter driving into Giants’ territory. Quarterback Robert Griffin III found receiver Leonard Hankerson for a 14-yard gain, which set up an eight-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Pierre Garcon. Griffin III bought time on the play and allowed Garcon to get open in the corner for the go-ahead score. After the extra point by kicker Kai Forbath, the Redskins took a 17-16 lead.
The Giants faced a 3rd and 2 from their own 14-yard line three plays into the ensuing drive. With the FedExField crowd rockin’, outside linebacker Rob Jackson came in untouched from the right side to get the sack of Eli Manning, forcing a Giants punt.
What a play from Jackson, who also came up huge in the Week 7 matchup between the Redskins and Giants at MetLife Stadium. He got help on the play from outside linebacker Ryan Kerrigan, who forced Manning out of his comfort zone and into the waiting arms of Jackson.
The Redskins faced a 3rd and 1 on the ensuing drive when Morris pushed the pile forward for a three-yard gain. But after a Morris run for no gain, a pass interference call on tight end Logan Paulsen and an incomplete pass intended for Joshua Morgan, the Redskins faced a 3rd and 20 from their own 46-yard line. Griffin III’s pass, again to Morgan, was way too deep, and the Redskins were forced to punt.
The pass interference call on Paulsen was killer. The replay showed no real foul to these untrained eyes, but, hey, it’s what the official saw.
The Giants got the ball back at their own 20-yard line. After a five-yard carry by running back Ahmad Bradshaw — a play that put him at 100 yards rushing on the night — Bradshaw got another three yards on the next play. Safety Madieu Williams was flagged for a horse-collar tackle, putting the ball at the New York 43-yard line.
Needless to say, after seeing the replay, the 80,246 fans here at FedExField didn’t exactly agree with the call.
After two straight incompletions, the Giants faced a 3rd and 10 from the 43. Manning, set up in the shotgun, found his receiver, but the play was nullified on a holding penalty on the Giants. On 3rd and 20, Manning tried a short pass to Bradshaw — but it only went for four yards, forcing a punt.
Thta was two key defensive stops in a row for the Redskins. I know you Washington fans aren’t too happy with the overall play of the defense at times, but when they hold the opposing team to field goals and then make key fourth-quarter stops.
On the ensuing drive, Griffin III took a nasty hit after an eight-yard carry — though he looked OK. I think he was trying to stay in bounds to keep the clock going, but he still needs to watch himself. On 2nd and 8, Griffin III found his favorite target, Garcon, for a 17-yard catch, giving him eight receptions for 106 yards and a touchdown on the day. With a bum foot. Atta boy, Pierre.
The Redskins sealed the victory with a six-yard run on 3rd and 3.
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Tags: 2012 regular season, monday night football, new york giants, washington redskins
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