Facing an opponent with nothing to play for, the Washington Redskins blew their chance to make the playoffs with an uninspired 19-10 loss to the New York Giants on Sunday.
The Redskins would have made the playoffs with a win as long as the Green Bay Packers-Detroit Lions night game didn't end in a tie. Instead, Kirk Cousins was intercepted twice in the second half by Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and Washington (8-7-1) goes into an offseason filled with questions.
The Packers and Lions each qualified as a result of the Redskins' loss to New York (11-5), which will be the first wild card. Eli Manning played the entire game, going 17 of 27 for 180 yards despite the Giants opting for a conservative approach for much of the second half.
Cousins finished 22 of 35 for 285 yards and a touchdown, but more importantly the interceptions in the third and fourth quarters. Fittingly the game ended with another Washington turnover when tight end Jordan Reed's attempted lateral turned into a Giants touchdown. >> Read more
Copyright 2017 by The Associated Press
The Giants came out with more fervor than many thought they would, and as Ben McAdoo promised, played their regulars the whole game Only CB Janoris Jenkins, who has been battling a sore back, and WR Odell Beckham Jr. sat out the second half. Beckham was likely held out to avoid any repercussions he might incur from his ongoing battle with Redskins CB Josh Norman.
Getting a road win as the Giants gear up for their first playoff game since Super Bowl XLVI speaks volumes about how far this team has come. New York, a No. 5 seed in the playoffs, will most likely be on the road from here on out.
Washington looked a little flat early on, mainly due to the Giants' stingy defense. The Redskins rebounded in the second half, but the Giants did not break; they made big plays in big spots like they've done all season. How many teams these days can win 11 games scoring fewer than 20 points per game?
The offense, once again, did just enough to win. It's the recurring theme that has underscored the 2016 season. The ground game heated up, racking up 161 yards on 40 attempts. Paul Perkins recorded 102 yards and looked energetic on many of his runs. Manning threw for just 180 yards, the sixth time this season he didn't eclipse 200 passing yards in a game.
Taverras King had a key 44-yard reception that led to the tiebreaking field goal. Safety Landon Collins was a beast again, recording eight tackles, a sack and two tackles for a loss. Rodgers-Cromartie had two timely interceptions that thwarted two Washington drives.