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Morning Water Cooler: Redskins Knock off Giants 17-16

12.04.2012 / Blog Posts Redskins

Andrew Walker

Washington Redskins fans, your team is officially red hot.

The Redskins used a strong second-half effort all around to defeat the visiting New York Giants, 17-16, last night in a nationally-televised, Monday Night Football battle at FedExField.

With the win, Washington moves to an even 6-6 on the year and has won three straight games – all against divisional opponents (Philadelphia Eagles, Dallas Cowboys and the Giants).

Last night’s game was the perfect example of how letting a team stick around can come back to bite you in the end. The Giants – who lead the NFC East Division with a 7-5 record – were pushing around the Redskins’ defense in the first half, converting 8-of-10 on third downs and controlling the clock for more than 20 of the game’s first 30 minutes.

Despite these frustrations, the Redskins only trailed by three, 13-10, going into halftime. They decided to make a few adjustments defensively in the second half, which included amping up the pressure on New York quarterback Eli Manning – and it paid off.

Perhaps the ultimate indication of the Redskins’ defense’s second-half improvement on third downs came with 9:57 left in the game.

On its previous drive, Washington had taken the lead at 17-16 on an eight-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Robert Griffin III to wide receiver Pierre Garçon.

The Giants began the ensuing drive from their own eight-yard line and gained six yards over the next two plays before facing a 3rd and 4 from their own 14.

New York quarterback Eli Manning, lined up in the shotgun, dropped back on the play and was flushed to his left by Redskins’ outside linebacker Ryan Kerrigan. From there, fellow outside linebacker Rob Jackson was in position to drop Manning for a key third-down sack, setting up a New York punt.

The defense shut down one additional Giants’ potential go-ahead drive from that point to win the game.

It’s the unsung heroes like Jackson that make a football team so much better. And, at this pace, those unsung heroes could be carrying the Redskins to a potential playoff spot come January.

The Redskins hope to push their winning streak to four games on Sunday, when the always-tough Baltimore Ravens (9-3) come to FedExField.

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