Don Banks of SI.com makes five points in his column this morning regarding last night's New York Giants-Washington Redskins Monday Night Football slaughter.
I agree with much of what Banks had to say. There were two points he made about the Giants in particular that I feel a need to highlight.
- The Giants responded to a must-win situation like a veteran team that still knows how to take care of business in big games. Week 15 in the NFL featured four games where a winning team fell to a losing club playing the spoiler role -- Oakland over Denver, Carolina over Minnesota, Atlanta over the Jets, and Pittsburgh over Green Bay -- but not for one second did the Giants come close to falling victim to that trend.
- The Giants running back who gives defenses the most headaches is Ahmad Bradshaw, not Brandon Jacobs. It was Bradshaw who provided New York an early jump-start against Washington, not Jacobs, the Giants lead rusher and starting tailback. Despite playing with a nagging ankle injury, Bradshaw looked quick and elusive in the first quarter, scoring on a 3-yard third-and-goal run on New York's first possession, and a 4-yard burst on the Giants' second drive.
My take: On the first point, this tells you Tom Coughlin is firmly in control of this team and it still has the desire to win. On the second point, it's clear that the big plays from the running back position are going to come from Bradshaw and not Jacobs. AB is not the 'changeup' back any longer, even though he generally gets fewer carries. He has become the play maker.