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Keys to Victory: Giants look for season sweep


The New York Giants (2-8) will look for their second victory over the Washington Commanders (4-6) in less than a month and complete the season sweep when the NFC East foes meet this Sunday (1 p.m. ET kickoff) at FedExField. It will wrap up a three-game road stretch, which included a 30-6 loss at Las Vegas and 49-17 defeat at Dallas.

"I enjoy everything that goes with this position except losing," coach Brian Daboll said in his weekly one-on-one with "You put a lot into it, and when you lose, it's not a lot of fun. The challenge each week is to move on from the prior week, make the necessary corrections, no different than when you win a game, but it's always easier to move on when you win than it is when you lose. So, being consistent in that thought process, I think, is important."

View photos of the Giants on the practice field ahead of the Week 11 matchup against the Washington Commanders.

Here are three keys for the Giants to break a three-game losing streak:

Saquon does what he usually does vs. Washington

Saquon Barkley has more career rushing yards (711), rushing touchdowns (four), scrimmage yards (1,024), and scrimmage touchdowns (six) against Washington than any other opponent. This season, he leads the NFL with 454 rush yards since returning from injury in Week 6 and is second with 518 scrimmage yards in that span, behind only Cowboys wide receiver CeeDee Lamb.

The Giants are 2-0 when Barkley scores a touchdown this season and 0-8 when he does not find the end zone. Barkley will look to start fast to avoid another early hole for the Giants, who have trailed by 28 and 24 points in the first half of their last two games.

"That's the beauty and the unfortunate part of this business," Barkley said about not letting the losses linger. "Right away, you've got to get ready for the next team. You come in and you break down the film and you watch, you learn from it. You have to move on, whether it's a win or whether you beat a team by 40 or you get beat by 40. That's the mindset you have to have. You can't let it sit in and every game is a different game. It's a different opportunity, it's a different challenge that's going to present itself, and you've got to be ready for that next opportunity."

Pressure Howell

Commanders quarterback Sam Howell has the statistical oddity of leading the NFL in passing yards (2,783) and times sacked (47). The former is the third-most in Washington history through 10 games of a season (Kirk Cousins in 2016 and 2017), while the last quarterback in team history to lead the NFL in passing yards was Hall of Famer Sonny Jurgensen in 1969. Howell's 2,952 pass yards through 11 career games are fifth-most in NFL history. The Giants had a season-high six sacks against the Commanders in Week 7, when Howell had a season-low 52.4 completion percentage.

DeVito takes the next step

Last week, Tommy DeVito became the first rookie free agent quarterback to start a non-strike game for the Giants in the common draft era (since 1967). His first snap occurred with his feet in the Giants' own end zone after a goal-line stand by the defense, leading to two consecutive three-and-outs and a scoreless first half. With the game out of reach, DeVito powered through and threw two touchdowns in the second half. It can be a building block for the New Jersey native.

"This was his first game starting, I'd say in a tough environment against a really good team (Dallas), started on the half-inch line, had a couple of series there to start out backed up," Daboll said. "As we go through the preparation week and even playing in a game, the whole goal is to improve, and he's got the right mindset to do that."

Notes & stats to impress your fellow football fans

The Commanders have played eight games decided by one-possession in 2023, second-most the NFL. They are 4-4 in such games while the Giants are 2-2.

Howell (1,077) and Patrick Mahomes (1,173) are the only quarterbacks with 1,000+ pass yards to running backs and tight ends in 2023 (Mahomes led the NFL in pass yards to running backs from 2018-2022 under Eric Bieniemy).

Washington has allowed 93 points in the fourth quarter, most in the NFL.

The Commanders have allowed 32.8 points per game at home in 2023 (most in the NFL), including three consecutive games giving up at least 35 points (longest streak in team history).

View photos from the all-time series between the New York Giants and the Washington Commanders.


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