The New York Giants earned their first win of the 2020 season Sunday when they defeated the division-rival Washington Football Team, 20-19, at MetLife Stadium. New York improved to 1-5 and Washington dropped to 1-5.
The Giants were leading 13-10 at halftime. Despite a nine-minute, 14-play drive in the third quarter, New York was held scoreless and the score remained the same entering the fourth quarter.
With the score knotted at 13, Washington was putting together a strong drive down the field but it was cut short when Kyle Allen was sacked by Kyle Fackrell at the Washington 45-yard line. Allen fumbled the football and it was recovered by Tae Crowder, also known as Mr. Irrelevant, who rushed for a 46-yard touchdown to give the Giants a 20-13 lead.
Washington responded with a touchdown score on its following drive. But they opted to go for a two-point conversion and were unable to convert, allowing the Giants to hold on for a 20-19 victory.
“It was nice to see guys smiling in the locker room after the game,” defensive end Leonard Williams said. “It goes to show everyone was happy for Coach Judge.”
No Andrew Thomas
Matt Peart, the rookie out of UConn, started at left tackle instead of first round pick Andrew Thomas who has allowed more pressures than any tackle in the league through five weeks of play. Peart was drafted in the third round with the No. 99 overall pick.
Thomas entered the game on the Giants’ first offensive drive of the second quarter.
Breaking the touchdown pass slump
The Giants scored 10 points in just two minutes of the first quarter on Sunday. After Graham Gano’s 33-yard field goal, James Bradberry recorded his second interception of the season to give the Giants right back the ball.
On the Giants’ following drive, Jones connected with Darius Slayton for a 23-yard touchdown pass.
The pass snapped a touchdown pass drought for Jones, who had thrown 145 passes without a score. All three of Jones’ TD passes have gone to Slayton this season, but the two haven’t connected since Week 1 against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Washington entered the game as the sixth-worst team in the league in passing plays allowed of 20 yards or more with 17. The Football Team has allowed explosive plays week after week and the Giants took advantage of that weakness Sunday.
Washington went for it on fourth down twice in the first half and the Giants defense was unable to stop them both times. The second time though was a riskier call by “Riverboat” Ron Rivera. Washington punted the ball and downed it at the 1-yard line, but the Giants were flagged for running into the kicker. Instead of just taking the punt, Washington elected to go for it on 4th and 4 and the Giants allowed a 15-yard pass play.
New York not only allowed Washington to convert on fourth down but also score a touchdown on the drive.
The score is significant because it illustrates a pattern that the Giants have been largely unable to break. The defense has allowed a touchdown drive of 70 yards or more in the final two minutes of the first half in five of six games this season.
An end zone interception...again
Late in the third quarter, Jones led the Giants all the way down the field on a 14-play drive that ate up nine minutes of clock. But he killed the drive when he threw a pick in the end zone to a diving Kendall Fuller
The play was reviewed and though it appeared that Fuller’s elbow landed out of the end zone, the ruling on the field was upheld.
It was Jones’ third red-zone interception this season. Bad call or not, Jones should have thrown the ball away and avoided any risk because the Giants came away with no points and allowed Washington to drive right back down the field.
Jones recorded 12 completions in 19 attempts for 112 yards, one touchdown and one interception. He had a team-high 49-yard run in the game and finished with 76 rushing yards.
Slayton hauled in a two receptions for a team-high 41 yards.
Blake Martinez led the defensive effort once again with 14 tackles, including eight solo.
Tae Crowder, of course, scored the game-winning touchdown with a 46-yard fumble return but he was also second on the team with 10 tackles on the day.
Wide receiver C.J. Board went down at the start of the third quarter and was carted off of the field. The Giants announced that he has a concussion and sprained neck and he did not return to the game.
The Giants will travel to Philadelphia on Thursday for a division matchup against the Eagles. The game is at 8:20 p.m. and will be broadcast on FOX.