Gameday Graphic for Game on 12/5/2010
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Just your typical holiday party, where the guests showed up empty-handed.
That hardly bothered the hosts, who rocked the place. And their reluctant visitors.
The Redskins rolled into New Meadowlands Stadium without half of their starting secondary, minus any running backs of note and with defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth deactivated because he did not practice Friday, head coach Mike Shanahan said.
They wobbled away, punched out in this giant, new punch bowl, by the New York Giants.
The Giants (8-4) kept pace with the Philadelphia Eagles atop the AFC East. The Redskins (5-7) dropped a second consecutive game and can all but abandon the flickering flame of playoff hopes they tried to fan last week with their talking of running the table.
Run the table? They got run out of the stadium, allowing 197 yards on the ground.
The Redskins fell 31-7. Fell hard. They lost for a fifth consecutive time to the Giants, for an eighth time in nine meetings, and they lost their reason for being, at least so far as the remaining four games go. Sure, they can play for pride and they can play for their jobs next season but how does that make December worthwhile?
The Giants had scored two touchdowns on this breezy, wintry afternoon before any other team in the NFL had scored one. Two possessions, two scores, virtually identical drives. Fifty eight yards on seven plays on the first, 59 on seven on the second, with Brandon Jacobs scoring from eight yards out on the initial possession and Ahmad Bradshaw from the 4-yard line on the second.
We may never know what the Redskins would be like if they played with a lead. We know way too much about them trying to come from behind.
It ain't pretty.
The Giants rushed for 140 yards and three touchdowns … in the first half. They lost a chance at another touchdown when Eli Manning made a terrible throw into the end zone and London Fletcher turned it into a beautiful interception.
The Redskins, however, gave the ball back on a fumble by Anthony Armstrong, setting up the Giants for that third score and a 21-0 lead at the break.
Had this gotten any uglier, it might have sprouted snakes from its head and turned innocent viewers into stone. Yes, the Medusa of football.
Another turnover midway through the third quarter set up Jacobs for a 28-yard touchdown run that included breaking the tackling attempts of Kevin Barnes and Reed Doughty. Then McNabb threw an interception in the end zone and all hope vanished.
Fuggedaboutit, as they say in Joisey. Broken tackles, broken dreams.
The Redskins tackled poorly. Missed assignments. Got very mixed results from personnel.
Without Haynesworth, the defensive front put no pressure on Manning, who went a fifth consecutive game without being sacked, even with three regulars missing from his offensive line. Without Landry, the secondary missed its best blitzer and explosive tackler. The sum of the parts equaled the whole and the whole didn't equal much at all.
Stephon Heyer played most of the game at left tackle for Trent Williams and went poorly. He gave up a couple of sacks and had a false start penalty that turned a third-and-two into something five yards worse. He didn't so much get beaten by the Giants' speed rushers as spun around like some gigantic pinwheel.
Six turnovers. One takeaway. That's enough to tilt the scoreboard. Pouring battery acid into the wound was former Redskin Devin Thomas' deflected punt that led to a Giants field goal. Thomas may have had deficiencies as a receiver and as a student of the playbook but he got his bit of payback.
Even with a little flash by running back James Davis, the Redskins failed to rush the football enough in the first half and then, as they fell behind, couldn't really try to run it at all. That left McNabb at the mercy of the Giants' pass rush, which sacked him four times.
By the middle of the third quarter, the Giants appeared to be bored by the Redskins' inability to escape membership in the "One Touchdown A Week" club. This game, last game, the game before, that's all the Redskins mustered.
At the end, the fans made an early exit, more eager to see the New Jersey Turnpike than the anticlimactic termination of this lopsided pounding. They'll return to see their team in the playoff hunt, competing in meaningful games through the mean month of December.
The Redskins? Well, they've still got four games left as well. They could finish 9-7. They could finish 5-11. They could finish somewhere in between. They've got the playoff-minded Tampa Bay Buccaneers coming to FedExField, a visit to the AFC South-leading Jacksonville Jaguars on the Christmas weekend, and one last crack at the Giants on the day after New Year's. Yes, there's a visit to Dallas to play the Cowboys as well.
Perhaps they can spoil things for others. They've spoiled it for themselves.
The Redskins travel to East Rutherford, N.J., to take on NFC East rival New York Giants on Sunday, Dec. 5 at New Meadowlands Stadium. Kickoff is 1 p.m. ET.
New Meadowlands Stadium has FieldTurf as its playing surface. The stadium seats 82,500.
It's the Redskins' first regular season visit to New Meadowlands Stadium, the Giants' new facility that they share with the New York Jets.
The Redskins played a preseason game against the Jets at New Meadowlands Stadium on Aug. 27 and won 16-11.
The Redskins are 2-1 in NFC East play this season. They beat the Dallas Cowboys 13-7 in Week 1 and the Philadelphia Eagles 17-12 in Week 4 and they lost to the Eagles 59-28 in Week 10.
The Giants are 1-2 in the NFC East, splitting two games with the Cowboys (a 41-35 win in Week 7 and 33-20 loss in Week 10) and a 27-17 loss to the Eagles in Week 11.
In road games, the Redskins are 3-2 this season, while the Giants are 4-2 at their new stadium.
The Redskins-Giants game will be televised to a regional audience on FOX. Kenny Albert calls the play-by-play with color commentary by Daryl Johnston. The sideline reporter is Tony Siragusa.
On radio, the game will be broadcast locally on the Redskins Radio Network. Larry Michael calls the play-by-play with former Redskins and Hall of Famers Sonny Jurgensen and Sam Huff adding color commentary. Former Redskin Rick 'Doc' Walker reports from the sidelines.
PROJECTED STARTING LINEUPS
|WR||89 Santana Moss||82 Mario Manningham|
|LT||71 Trent Williams||65 Will Beatty|
|LG||78 K. Lichtensteiger||77 Kevin Boothe|
|C||61 Casey Rabach||69 Rich Seubert|
|RG||75 Artis Hicks||76 Chris Snee|
|RT||77 Jammal Brown||67 Kareem McKenzie|
|TE||47 Chris Cooley||89 Kevin Boss|
|WR||13 Anthony Armstrong||85 Derek Hagan|
|QB||5 Donovan McNabb||10 Eli Manning|
|FB||45 Mike Sellers||86 Bear Pascoe|
|RB||35 Keiland Williams||27 Brandon Jacobs|
|DE||94 Adam Carriker||72 Osi Umenyiora|
|NT/DE||96 Ma'ake Kemoeatu||99 Chris Canty|
|DE/DT||64 Kedric Golston||96 Barry Cofield|
|LB/DE||99 Andre Carter||91 Justin Tuck|
|LB||59 London Fletcher||53 Keith Bulluck|
|LB||52 Rocky McIntosh||54 Jonathan Goff|
|LB||98 Brian Orakpo||59 Michael Boley|
|CB||23 DeAngelo Hall||23 Corey Webster|
|CB||22 Carlos Rogers||24 Terrell Thomas|
|SS||37 Reed Doughty||21 Kenny Phillips|
|FS||41 Kareem Moore||26 Antrel Rolle|
|P||17 Hunter Smith||6 Matt Dodge|
|K||4 Graham Gano||9 Lawrence Tynes|
|H||17 Hunter Smith||17 Sage Rosenfels|
|LS||57 Nick Sundberg||51 Zak DeOssie|
|KOR||16 Brandon Banks||15 Darius Reynaud|
|PR||16 Brandon Banks||15 Darius Reynaud|
The Redskins and New York Giants have played each other every year since 1932, with the Giants leading the series 90-62-4 (including postseason).
The two teams have played each other more than any other team in each club's history.
The Giants have won four consecutive games against the Redskins, including twice last year. Since 2006, the Giants own a 7-1 record against the Redskins.
The Redskins are 24-48-2 in road games in the series.
In Week 1 of the 2009 season, the Giants defeated the Redskins 23-17 at Giants Stadium in the Meadowlands.
In what turned out to be a pivotal play, defensive end Osi Umenyiora stripped quarterback Jason Campbell of the ball in the second quarter and scooped up the fumble. He raced 37 yards for a touchdown.
Fourteen weeks later, in a nationally televised Monday night contest, the Giants dominated the Redskins in a 45-12 victory at FedExField.
The Redskins' first-ever game in Washington, D.C., was against the Giants. On Sept. 16, 1937, the Redskins defeated the Giants 13-3 in front of 19,941 fans at D.C. Stadium.
The Redskins and Giants have played twice in the postseason, once in 1943 with the Redskins winning 28-0 to advance to the NFL Championship game.
In 1986, the Giants defeated Joe Gibbs's Redskins 17-0 in the NFC Championship game at Giants Stadium.
TALE OF THE TAPE
|REDSKINS 2010 RANKINGS|
|GIANTS 2010 RANKINGS|
FAMILIAR FACES ON THE GIANTS
Offensive line coach Pat Flahertywas a Redskins tight ends coach in 2000.
Tight ends coach Michael Pope was a Redskins tight ends coach from 1997-99.
Defensive line coach Robert Nunn coached the Redskins' defensive line in 2003.
Wide receiver Devin Thomas was the Redskins' second-round draft pick in 2008 and played with the club through Week 6 this season. He logged 40 catches for 445 yards and three touchdowns in 2 seasons with the Redskins.
Backup quarterback Sage Rosenfels was the Redskins' fourth-round draft pick in 2001. He was with the Redskins for one season but did not see any game action.
Player development consultant Jessie Armstead was a linebacker with the Redskins from 2003-04.
REDSKINS-GIANTS NEWS & NOTES
-- McNabb vs. NFC East
Donovan McNabb has had sustained success against the NFC East in his 12-year career.
Overall, McNabb is 36-24 against the NFC East for a winning percentage of .600.
The three other starting QBs in the division -- Eli Manning, Tony Romo and Michael Vick -- are a combined 41-35 against the NFC East, a winning percentage of .539.
McNabb is 11-7 vs. the New York Giants in his NFL career.
He is 12-9 vs. Dallas, 12-7 vs. Washington and 1-1 vs. Philadelphia, the team he played for from 1999-2009 before joining the Redskins this year.
In the regular season, McNabb has swept an NFC East opponent 10 times.
-- McNabb And Big Plays
The Redskins' offense has shown a propensity for big plays this season.
Donovan McNabb has an NFL-best eight pass completions of 50 yards or longer. He also has 11 pass completions of 40 yards or longer, the second-highest total in the league.
Despite being sacked 31 times, the second-highest total in the league, the six-time Pro Bowler is sixth in the NFL with 2,853 passing yards.
He is on pace for 4,148 passing yards this season, which would be the first 4,000-yard passing season of his career. He could set the Redskins' single-season record of 4,109 passing yards by Jay Schroeder in 1986.
-- First-Year Redskins Head Coaches
Entering Sunday's game vs. Tennessee, Mike Shanahan is 5-6 in his first season as Redskins head coach.
Looking back at Redskins head coaches in their first season, five have gone on to have winning seasons (excluding Dick Todd, who was 5-4 in taking over three games into the 1951 season.)
Twelve first-year head coaches suffered losing campaigns, including Joe Gibbs's return in 2004. Additionally Herman Ball coached the final seven games in 1949 and finished 1-4, while Terry Robiskie finished 1-2 while coaching the last three games of 2000.
Eight first-year head coaches ended their seasons with a .500 record, including Jim Zorn in 2008.
-- How the Redskins' 53-Man Roster Was Built
The Redskins have 15 players on the roster that the team drafted, including 2010 first-round pick Trent Williams and 2009 supplemental draft pick Jeremy Jarmon.
Mike Sellers is the longest-tenured Redskins. He had a stint with the Redskins in 1998-2000 and rejoined the team in 2004.
Washington has used unrestricted free agency to acquire 28 players, including Casey Rabach in 2005, Andre Carter in 2006, London Fletcher in 2007, DeAngelo Hall in 2008, Albert Haynesworth in 2009 and Ma'ake Kemoeatu in 2010.
Five Redskins players were acquired as undrafted rookie free agents. This group includes offensive linemen Stephon Heyer and cornerback Byron Westbrook, both local products.
The team has five players on the roster acquired via trade: Santana Moss, Donovan McNabb, Adam Carriker, Jammal Brown and John Beck.
-- Redskins' Strength of Schedule
The Redskins have the NFL's eighth toughest schedule in 2010, according to the NFL.
The Redskins' opponents this season produced a 134-122 record last year, a .523 winning percentage.
The Houston Texans (.547), Tennessee Titans (.547), Dallas Cowboys (.543), Cincinnati Bengals (.539), Jacksonville Jaguars (.535), New England Patriots (.531) and New York Giants (.527) have tougher schedules.
The Redskins play 11 games against teams who finished .500 or better in 2009. They play seven games against 2009 playoff opponents.
-- On the Road Again
The Redskins will travel 11,124 miles in 2010, the 25th most in the NFL. For the second year in a row, they have the shortest travel schedule in the NFC East.
The San Francisco 49ers travel 35,219 miles, most in the NFL. The Cincinnati Bengals travel 6,688 miles, least in the NFL.
The total distance traveled by all NFL teams is 507,050 miles. This is 71,862 fewer miles than 2009, when teams traveled a total of 578,912 miles.
-- Shanahan's Moving Up
With the Redskins' Week 10 win over the Tennessee Titans, Mike Shanahan recorded his 159th career win (regular season and postseason) as a head coach.
Shanahan's career record is 159-109, a .593 winning percentage. That win total is 16th best among all-time NFL head coaches.
He needs three wins to surpass Bill Cowher, who has a 161-99-1 career record.
-- What's Next?
The Redskins return to FedExField to host the Tampa Bay Buccanners at FedExField. Kickoff is 1 p.m. ET.
Last year, the Redskins also hosted the Buccaneers and came from behind to win 16-13.