Sunday, December 1, 2013
Rapid Reaction: New York Giants
By Dan Graziano
LANDOVER, Md. -- A few thoughts on the New York Giants' 24-17 victory against the Washington Redskins on Sunday night at FedEx Field:
What it means: As we have been saying since they were winless in mid-October, these Giants aren't going to roll over on their lost season. Even down 14-0 in the second quarter Sunday night, they were fighting and determined to win a division game on the road. Expect it to continue, regardless of results, the rest of the way. Many of the positives from this Giants' season were on display in this one -- Andre Brown at running back, Jon Beason at middle linebacker, the strong run defense and solid work by members of an undermanned secondary winning their one-on-one coverage and tackling battles. The Giants are 5-7 and two games behind a first-place tie between teams against which they went a combined 1-3. They're cooked. But they're not playing like it, and if you're a Giants fan that's all you can ask at this point.
Stock watch, UP: Defensive end Justin Tuck. On the first day of what many have long thought would be his final month as a Giant, Tuck recorded four sacks and helped lock down the defense in the second half against Robert Griffin III and the Redskins. Tuck has had a fine season overall, but that hadn't been showing up in the sack numbers, as he only had 2.5 in the team's first 11 games. Healthy and productive, he could be making a push for either a big free-agent deal or to convince the Giants to keep him -- if that's what he wants.
Stock Watch, DOWN: Left tackle Will Beatty. On the flip side, Beatty struggled mightily in pass protection against Redskins linebacker Brian Orakpo, who's making a free-agent contract push of his own. Orakpo had two sacks, and pressure from him helped force Eli Manning into a third-quarter interception. Beatty has been erratic in this, the first year of the five-year free-agent deal he signed with the Giants last offseason.
What's next: The Giants are back on the road next week, as they travel to San Diego for a 4:25 p.m. ET Sunday game against the 5-7 Chargers, who lost at home to the Bengals this week.