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Need to Know: Final thoughts on Redskins vs. Giants

Sep 25, 2016, 7:03 AM EDT


EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ–Here is what you need to know on this Sunday, September 25, the day the Washington Redskins visit the New York Giants.


Today’s schedule: Redskins vs. Giants 1 p.m. FOX

Days until: Browns @ Redskins 7; Redskins @ Ravens 14; Eagles @ Redskins 21

Final thoughts on Redskins vs. Giants

—News came out this morning that Rashad Jennings, who is the Giants’ leading rusher, will be out with a broken thumb. That will have some impact on today’s game but Shane Vereen has been taken about 40 percent of the Giants rushing attempts so far this year and he is a more than capable fill in.

—Contrary to what you might think when a team is 2-0 the Giants are upside down in turnover margin. They have lost three fumbles and Eli Manning has thrown an interception. Rarely will a team that’s minus-four be 2-0 but they have survived. That either means that the Giants are resilient or that they or lucky. Or maybe a little of both. If the Giants have a negative margin today and still win the Redskins will be kicking themselves over a lost opportunity.

—In fact, against the Saints last week the Giants did not score an offensive touchdown, getting their only TD on a return of a blocked field goal attempt. And they lost those three fumbles. Since merger only four teams have won a game with no offenive touchdowns and a negative turnover margin. You might remember the last time it happened. It was the Bears beating the Cardinals in 2006 and the result had Arizona coach Dennis Green shouting “They are who we thought they were! And we let them off the hook!” Clearly the Saints let the Giants off the hook but Sean Peyton didn’t explode at the podium.

—The Giants are also underwater in sacks, getting two of them while giving up four. The Redskins will hope to add to the deficit today as second-year player Bobby Hart will fill in for injured right tackle Marshall Newhouse. Hart could be a matchup that Ryan Kerrigan can exploit. Meanwhile Olivier Vernon, who signed an $85 million free agent contract with the Giants last spring, has barely dented the stat sheet with no sacks and three tackles in two games. He will be matched up against Trent Williams.

— Will desperation overcome the Meadowlands jinx? I don’t think that it will. The problem is that the Redskins really don’t have anything to hang their hats on right now. The major facets of the game—running the ball, stopping the run, passing, pass defense—are all malfunctioning to one degree or another. Things could fall into place and the Redskins could come away with a win, perhaps an easy one. But based on what I’ve seen I can’t predict that.

Giants 24, Redskins 20

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In case you missed it 

  1. sidepull - Sep 25, 2016 at 7:57 AM

    I dont know if it will get a W today, but I think Cousins does connect with his receivers today. Last week, despite the defense, I felt if Cousins connects on some of those balls they beat the Cowboys anyhow. Beside Cousins completing passes, some other phase of the game is going to have to improve…. like defense.

    • skinsgame - Sep 25, 2016 at 8:30 AM

      What makes you think Ciusins is suddenly going to “find his receivers”?

      • sidepull - Sep 25, 2016 at 9:38 AM

        They were running wide open at times against the Cowboys. The coaches called good enough plays to get them open. Cousins just missed. I dont think the likelihood of that poor accuracy is going to happen to that degree again this week. If they get that open, I am hoping, I said hoping, he does not misfire again this week. Last week without play action, without screens, without a running game, they still could have posted a win. Today I feel Cousins will be under pressure. He better take the opportunities he is given and make the most. History is Giants Stadium is awful. Need a change today. HTTR

        • skinsgame - Sep 25, 2016 at 11:42 AM

          I hear ya, I just disagree. Kirk has been average and below average for most of his short career. He had a good run beginning mid season last year but it tailed off and he’s been mostly average since. The likelihood he will improve on the road, in divisional games are less than the odds he will continue to wait too long to throw or continue to throw short hops and overthrows. I hoped his poor showing against Green Bay was a fluke but it’s proving to be the norm. Anything is possible though. Hail.

        • skinsgame - Sep 25, 2016 at 5:03 PM

          Happy to see your prediction proved true! Kirk had flaws but played far better overall.

        • redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 25, 2016 at 6:01 PM

          Holding onto the ball has very rarely been Cousins issues since last season’s. It’s actually the opposite

  2. redskins12thman - Sep 25, 2016 at 7:57 AM

    You highlight the many components that could help Redskins (e.g., team can focus on stopping Eli’s quick passing game and Vereen, the Giants offense hasn’t been that productive, the right side of their o-line is a weakness), yet conclude: “the Redskins really don’t have anything to hang their hats on right now. The major facets of the game—running the ball, stopping the run, passing, pass defense—are all malfunctioning to one degree or another.”

    The sad thing is the first two were known issues from last season and have not been fixed, Kirk’s not playing yet as well as he did for most of last season and safeties / nickel back have become the glaring weakness of the team and a very unprepared group for the start of the season.

    Well, it’s now clear that Redskins’ summertime hubris was unwarranted. No need for talk or explanations; just right the ship and deliver a win today. My faith in Gruden and especially Barry is slipping.

    • redskins12thman - Sep 25, 2016 at 8:25 AM

      Correction: running attack may actually be serviceable, but unsure because play calling has been one-sided to passing, in part because Redskins offense has scored more field goals than TDs at a 2 to 1 ratio coupled with porous defense that results in team playing from behind for most of both games. So much for bend but not breaking.

    • skinsgame - Sep 25, 2016 at 8:50 AM

      “..the Giants offense hasn’t been that productive”
      They haven’t had an opportunity to face Joe Barry’s defense yet either.

      • sidepull - Sep 25, 2016 at 4:35 PM


  3. colorofmyskinz - Sep 25, 2016 at 8:03 AM

    Agreed. I think a win here for us will only come with a major reversal of one of those key areas you mention that we are misfiring at. Here are some areas we need to see a major change with or this does become that nice little loss by 4 or more:

    – Kerrigan needs to become relevant. To this point he does not look like a $50 Million Dollar man. He looks like an irrelevant Houston Bates so far this year. There has been zero disruption from Kerrigan zero. Maybe it is that groin everyone climbed to be no big deal that we will hear about after the season as “I was not right until half way through the season” like we heard last year. Regardless, he is not right, and irrelevant to other teams as a threat.
    – Preston needs to get lower no finish. This guy is very upright in his attack and needs desperate work on technique. Would love to see him bend even just a little. But the lumbering method he has been using is worthless in the NFL.
    – Baker needs to convince us he is more than a DT or nose. He has been irrelevant at DE and is not even close to performing like one. I would put a bug in his ear today and let him know if we don’t see him pressing the edge, he will be finding himself at nose the rest of the year.
    – Murphy is the only bright spot on the front 9 of our defense. I hope he shows us why we drafted him and reminds us why he is the other DE we need.
    – Compton needs to get the plays straight from Barry. Barry needs to be more clear. Compton needs to get people in place quick and quit freaking out before plays. Just get in the zone.
    – I wish Spaight could find the field because he is much better at stuffing the run than both Compton or foster combined.
    – Bruton, no love. Hope you screw up immediately if you start, so we can get Nacho on the field, this depth has been wrong all offseason
    – Phillips, no love. Would take Fuller any day.
    – Sua, please give Barry a reason to keep you on the field. I would take you anywhere there are many holes.
    – Norman keep your head and get into Odell’s head please. Shut him out.

    – Number 1, Kory really needs to show he is NFL caliber at center. I don’t want to see one play with him driven back 10 yards into Kirk while the other linemen are moving forward. Long please get ready, this might be your game to take over.
    – Williams, if you get another false start or holding, OMG. Play like the caliber you are, top of the NFL.
    – Kirk get out of your head and just play and have fun. Your training is good enough to reply on instinct. Quit thinking about it and just play.
    – Jones, get lower and lower that shoulder that we know is tough to do when injured. Time to show us why you were drafted to oust Morris.
    – top receiving Corp, catch the balls that come your way. Way too many drops by this elite group. If you have to secure the Velcro strap on your gloves. I know it looks cool when that strap is undone, but honestly I think you all need any edge to make sure there are no screw ups. Just catch those balls you know you can.
    – Gruden, how about a halftime adjustment that gives us an edge in the second half. Do you have that in you?


    • redskins12thman - Sep 25, 2016 at 8:40 AM

      Interesting individual insights:

      I didn’t know that Compton is freaking out. For me, missed defensive assignments is huge among most DBs and LBs. Team needs to get act together.

      DHall needs to be called out too. He’s a captain and his play has been below starter quality; last game, DHall’s play was below a back-ups per Cooley!

      Re Kerrigan, at least he has 1.5 sacks (that’s on track for a dozen this season) and a forced fumble; clearly his play can and needs to improve but he’s contributed.

      Need continued good effort by Hood and Jenkins too! They’re showing something.

      On offense, thought Jones had good game against Cowboys so just want to see that again.

      Teams have studied Cousins and team has yet to adjust; Cousins will need to run at times like showed a little against Dallas.

      Thought receiver corps has played very well to date — not many dropped passes.

      All take adjustments from coaching staff at any time; doesn’t have to wait until HT.

      • colorofmyskinz - Sep 25, 2016 at 8:47 AM

        How could I forget DHall? Maybe because I forgot he plays football. I have not seen him near a ball unless it is to hold a player up so that one of the other 10 guys could tackle the guy. Hope that purple suit does something for his football playing. Looks like a baller but plays like a 2-hand-touch flag player. Guy just can’t hit period. Shys away from every contact possible. Please remove this guy and place anyone.

        • snyderisanidiot - Sep 25, 2016 at 9:58 AM

          Transition players are OK for the backup position. But please no transition or switching over players for the Starting positions.

  4. Colmac69 - Sep 25, 2016 at 8:11 AM

    Avoid turnovers and execute in red zone for offense (not rocket science )

    Offense is moving ball despite lack run support so I expect a few points from offense

    However don’t believe our defense will stop giants offense so unless we post 25-30 don’t like our chances

    • colorofmyskinz - Sep 25, 2016 at 8:25 AM

      Our defense averages giving up 32.5 points per game. So the 25-30 you mention we need to post needs to be 35-40 if we are going to expect to win the way our defense is performing.

      Not many offenses averaging that many points.

      • redskins12thman - Sep 25, 2016 at 8:27 AM

        Only Colts and Raiders have given up more points per game than Redskins.

  5. ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© - Sep 25, 2016 at 8:33 AM

    Our recent history in the Meadowlands is not good. But it’s gotta change sometime, right?

    I remember going to a game there in the 90s. We were down until making a 4th quarter comeback. There was a fan there dressed like Joe Gibbs and we all followed him out of the stadium when the game was over.

    Good times!

  6. skinsgame - Sep 25, 2016 at 8:46 AM

    The wheels will start falling off today. Penalties are likely a major issue again and Eli Manning should have a monster game. The Redskins safeties are, potentially, historically awful and of the three units, only special teams ever seems to be prepared. As always, matchups are the key and the Giants will have a major edge all day long, offensively. They should score over 40 today while we watch D Hall, Kerrigan, Compton, etc vanish into thin air yet again. Look for the Skins O line to block pretty well but then give it all back with penalties again. I also look for Cousins to throw two picks, one of which will be another head scratcher.

    • Trey Gregory - Sep 25, 2016 at 8:08 PM

      Well. That seemed unnecessarily negative.

  7. garg8050 - Sep 25, 2016 at 9:14 AM

    All the measurables suggest an easy Giants victory. For the ‘Skins to win, it will take a resilient, focused effort that we haven’t seen since the Gibbs Era. In the last 10 years, when the Skins have been prohibitive underdogs, they’ve played like it, and usually have been blown out…let’s see how this plays out today.

    • colorofmyskinz - Sep 25, 2016 at 9:26 AM

      Yea lets see if they can show a different team today.

      My prediction. If our defense can hold big blue to less than 25 points we win. If we allow more than 25 points we lose. Notice nothing hinging on offense. If defense does that alone, it will give our offense the opportunities to win.

      Simple. Game depends on our defense today.

  8. snyderisanidiot - Sep 25, 2016 at 9:29 AM

    I have the Giants dominating the Redskins for 4 quarters. I have Kirk Cousins playing much better but Eli still comes out on top. Skins never Win in the Meadowlands and nothing changes today.

    NY Giants: 27
    Redskins: 23

    • skinsgame - Sep 25, 2016 at 12:46 PM

      I have it 41-19

  9. COSSkinsFan - Sep 25, 2016 at 10:04 AM

    Today we find out who this team is. We know who we have been the first 2 games of the season, not only have we not been able to execute but we have been the opposite of opportunistic. The 1st 2 games were both there for the taking if 1 or 2 plays were made. If we can execute today and make those 1 or 2 plays in a place were we have lost 12 out of the last 15 times that will say a lot about our heart. It would make 2-2 very possible and give hope that this may not be another long year. Good luck to the skins today HTTR.

    • redskins12thman - Sep 25, 2016 at 10:24 AM

      x 2

      • COSSkinsFan - Sep 25, 2016 at 4:33 PM

        Plenty of mistakes today, but Skins could’ve easily packed it in after the turnover on the punt. The way the second half ended was horrible, but they stayed with it and showed HEART! Way to redeem yourself Dunbar. Not sure if it will happen but would love to see that finishing oline left as starters.

  10. brucefan1 - Sep 25, 2016 at 12:27 PM

    Me? I’m pinning my hopes on a phenomenon that I strongly believe in; that when two teams that are of fairly even strength (and despite their records, I still do think that both are both are pretty equal), the team that NEEDS the game the most usually wins. And only a few other teams need to win this week as much as the Skins!

    I would also like nothing better than to turn the tables on a loss that the Giants inflicted on the Skins at FedEx way back in 2007 (that one hasn’t been stuck in my craw for too long huh?). In reversed roles, the SKINS started that season 2-0, while the G-men stumbled to an 0-2 start that had NY fans already sharpening the axe for Tom Coughlin. Well, after falling behind 17-3 the Giants where at their nadir — but they came roaring back in the second half with 21 unanswered points and shocked Redskin Nation, 24-17.

    (History shows the NYG went 9-4 the rest of the way and eventually earned an improbable Super Bowl victory over that undefeated Patriot team. The Skins? They did manage a Wild Card berth by were eliminated in the first round in what proved to be Joe Gibbs’ swan song.)

    The Redskins flipping that 2007 script today, while finally kick-starting the 2016 season, would be very satisfying — especially to yours truly.

    • redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 25, 2016 at 1:03 PM

      I’m not so sure how these teams are evenly matched. The Giants have far more talent on the defensive side probably one of the few teams w/ a better core WRs. Where is the advantage for the Redskins?

  11. redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 25, 2016 at 12:57 PM

    Just Win!

  12. redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 25, 2016 at 2:02 PM

    I’m not sure what else to say about Cousins. Almost 80% of the possessions are on Giants side of the field and 9 points to show for it. He missed a wide open Grant in the end zone because he continues to release the ball too soon.

    Running game could be better if the Scheme was better. Rarely are there consecutive run attempts. Defense know this.

    • redskinsnameisheretostay - Sep 25, 2016 at 2:16 PM

      Perfect deep ball to Jackson. That’s the Cousins I’m thinking about!

    • Trey Gregory - Sep 25, 2016 at 8:14 PM

      It seems like he’s trying really hard to get the ball out as fast as possible. I understand why he wants to do that, but obviously there are some drawbacks to it. Apparently this is a quick strike offense? To his credit, he usually gets the completion when that happens. But it’s hard to march down the field all day with shor throws. Eventually there will be drops, sacks, batted balls, under/over thrown balls, and good coverage. As you pointed out, he’s not seeing open guys downfield. It seems to me that he’s more focused on completing a pass then finding the right read.

  13. vcuramsfan - Sep 25, 2016 at 2:49 PM

    I should be shocked at the clock management, but I would be more shocked if they actually got it right once. Archives

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