NFL: 5 takeaways from the New York Giants' Week 9 win over the Washington Football Team
The New York Giants came into Sunday's game against the Washington Football Team with a record of 1-7. Many thought that it was a sure thing that the Giants were out of the NFC East race. The Giants showed that they're not out of the race just yet with a 23-20 victory.
The New York Giants defense came up big. Washington lost quarterback Kyle Allen in the first quarter to a leg injury. Allen was replaced by the veteran Alex Smith.
With the Dallas Cowboys' loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, the New York Giants go from last place to second place in the division.
5. Daniel Jones showed growth in the Giants' win
Quarterback Daniel Jones showed growth in the New York Giants victory on Sunday. He did not commit one turnover against Washington. Jones would throw for 212 yards and one touchdown against the tough Washington defense.
This is only Daniel Jones' second game this season without a turnover. He is growing as an NFL quarterback and the Giants need to be patient with him. The New York Giants knew that Jones was going to be a project at the quarterback position.
This game was a good sign for New York. Jones showed improvements from last week. He may have only thrown one touchdown, but the key to that is he did not turn the football over.
4. Washington's running game struggled to get going
Washington showed hope in their running game against the Dallas Cowboys a couple of weeks ago. The New York Giants shut down the running game of Washington early and often. Washington only rushed for 37 yards and it looks like their struggle in running the football is back.
When Washington was heading into their bye week, everyone thought that running back Antonio Gibson was going to continue to perform at a high level. The Giants defense held Gibson to just 20 rushing yards. With the running game struggling, Washington became one dimensional and had a quarterback who made a miracle comeback from injury.
The New York Giants were licking their chops thinking about hunting season on Alex Smith. Smith would have to throw the football a total of 32 times against the Giants. When Washington runs the football well, their offense clicks. They should look to add a consistent running back in next year's draft.
3. The New York Giants' defense dominated the game
The New York Giants played phenomenal on the defensive side of the football. They forced the Washington offense into five turnovers on Sunday. Three of those turnovers were committed by backup quarterback Alex Smith.
The Giants paid close attention to the Dallas Cowboys game against Washington and saw how the running game set up success for the Washington offense. New York's main goal coming into this football game was to stop the run and make Washington one dimensional. They put a clamp on the Washington run game very quickly.
The New York Giants also forced two fumbles that they were able to recover. New York pinned their ears back and went all in on putting the Washington quarterbacks on the ground. The Giants defense would get to Washington quarterbacks 7 times but were only able to come away with two sacks. The quarterback pressure caused a lot of the mistakes made by Alex Smith.
2. The New York Giants kept their hopes alive in the NFC East
The New York Giants move to 2-7 with their victory over Washington. The Giants are heading into a matchup next week with the division-leading Philadelphia Eagles. A game that didn't have much meaning but now it begins to have meaning with the Giants winning on Sunday.
The New York Giants are going to make a run at this opportunity. It would be a great start to coach Joe Judge's career in New York if he can pull this off. The chances of the Giants completing the season with a winning record are a long shot.
What works in their favor is that none of the NFC East teams will finish with a winning record. We have to remember the New York Giants won the Super Bowl with a 9-7 record back in 2011. This is a different Giants team and they probably wont make a deep playoff run, if they make the playoffs at all. This game was a step in the right direction and now they need next week's game to step even closer to winning the NFC East.
1. Washington needs a reliable quarterback and running back
Washington came into this season with high hopes for Dwayne Haskins Jr., but those hopes went out the window when he was benched. And now Kyle Allen is looking like he will be done for the rest of the season.
Washington is putting their season on Alex Smith. Smith is returning from a gruesome leg injury and could be one hit away from never playing football again. The Washington Football Team could potentially at some point be down to just Haskins.
It will be a must for Washington to draft a quarterback with their first round pick in the draft. They need to restart under coach Ron Rivera and let him build the team the way he wants it. We could also see Washington take a running back in the second or third round.
Washington needs both positions in a major way. They're not consistent enough running or throwing the football. We could potentially see Alex Smith retire after this season and Dwayne Haskins Jr. released. Washington should look for a back up quarterback that is a veteran and could step in if they need to. They have already figured out the defensive side of the ball. Now its time for them to figure out the offensive side.