REDSKINS: Washington falters after building early lead
LANDOVER, Md.—Eli Manning and Robert Grif fin III put on quite the show in the first half.
Then the two quarter backs and their teams— both with not-ready-for- prime-time records— showed how they’ve be come the bottom-feeders of the NFC East.
Yet one team had to win, and it was the New York Giants who took advantage of the latest Washington Redskins special teams er ror to set up the go-ahead touchdown.
Andre Brown had a pair of touchdown runs Sunday night, and Justin Tuck had four sacks—more than doubling his total from the season—as the Giants beat the Redskins 24–17 to stay on the fringes of the play off race.
The win keeps the Gi ants (5–7) two games be hind division leaders Dal las and Philadelphia with four to play, while the Redskins (3–9) were elim inated from the postseason for the 17th time in 21 years and finished the season 0- 5 in prime time.
Safety Will Hill sewed up the victory when he wres tled the ball from Pierre Garcon after the receiver made a catch near midfield with 1:21 remaining as the Redskins were driving for a possible tying score.
The turnover came two plays after a confusing moment in which Wash ington apparently thought it had a first down—the sideline down marker was at “1”—when it was actu ally third-and-1.
Redskins coach Mike Shanahan vented at offi cials over the miscue.
Manning and Griffin were a combined 26 for 29 for 250 yards at halftime— before the same troubles that have beset both teams resurfaced in droves.
Manning had a high throw tipped for an inter ception in the third quar ter, and he remains on course to have more inter ceptions than touchdown passes for the first time since his rookie season. Manning was also sacked three times, giving him a career-high of 31 for the season.
But the Redskins could only convert Manning’s interception into a field goal—even though they got the ball at the New York 12. That gave Washington a 17–14 lead, which evapo rated after a gaffe by the consensus worst special teams units in the league.
Redskins long snapper Kyle Nelson sent a bouncing grounder back to punter Sav Rocca, leading to a blocked punt that was compounded by a holding penalty on Nelson that added 10 yards to the final spot.
The Giants took over at the Washington 46 and then took the lead, needing only four plays and an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on cornerback DeAngelo Hall to produce Brown’s 1-yard touchdown run that made the score 21–17 early in the fourth quarter.
Josh Brown added an in surance 39-yard field goal with 2:32 remaining.
Manning finished 22 for 28 passes for 235 yards, includ ing a streak of 10 consecutive completions and a 22-yard touchdown pass to Brandon Myers in the second quarter.
Griffin completed his first 12 passes, looking like the dynam ic playmaker of 2012 as he found receivers from the pock et and used his speed to exploit the fringes of the Giants de fense on option runs.
But the Redskins offense went cold late for the second consecutive week, gaining only 95 yards in the second half.
After going 16 for 17 for 149 yards in the first half, Griffin was 8 for 15 for 58 yards in the second for a final line of 24 for 32 for 207 yards and a season-high 88 yards rushing on 12 carries.