AT A GLANCE:
Even when they're struggling, the Giants can still beat the Washington Football Team. With rookie linebacker Tae Crowder scoring the winning points on a 43-yard fumble return, the Giants defeated Washington on Sunday, 20-19, for their first victory under head coach Joe Judge. Washington countered with a 22-yard touchdown pass from Kyle Allen to Cam Sims with just 36 seconds remaining. Coach Ron Rivera elected to try a two-point conversion but Allen's pass was incomplete, securing the victory for the Giants. The victory ended the Giants' six-game losing streak dating back to last season. Both teams are 1-5. Three of the Giants' last four victories have been against Washington and they have beaten their division rivals four consecutive times.
The Giants will have just three days off before they return to the field for another game against an NFC East foe Thursday night, when they face the Philadelphia Eagles in Lincoln Financial Field. The Eagles swept the season series in 2019 for the third year in a row and the fifth time in six seasons to take the lead in the regular-season series at 85-83-2. The Giants have lost their last six games in The Linc, where they are 6-11 in the regular season and 0-1 in postseason play. The Giants are 4-6 in Thursday night games since 2009, including 2-5 on the road and are 0-2 against the Eagles on Thursday night, with one loss home and one away.
WHAT WE LEARNED ABOUT THE OFFENSE:
Daniel Jones can still throw a touchdown pass. The second-year quarterback connected with Darius Slayton for a 23-yard aerial score with 1:36 remaining in the first quarter. It was the Jones' and the Giants' first touchdown pass since Jones and Slayton hooked up twice in the season opener vs. Pittsburgh on Sept. 14. Jones threw 145 passes between scores.
Jones also moved the ball with is legs, gaining 49 yards on a run around left end and 57 yards in the first half. The 49-yarder was the second-longest run by an NFL quarterback this season(after a 50-yard touchdown by Baltimore's Lamar Jackson, also against Washington). It was also the longest by a Giants quarterback in the Super Bowl era. The previous long was a 47-yarder by Jeff Hostetler at Phoenix on Nov. 10, 1991.
Jones threw for a career-low 112 yards while completing 12 of 19 passes but led the Giants with 74 rushing yards on just seven carries.
Devonta Freeman added 61 yards on 18 carries.
The turnover bug again bit Jones and in the worst possible circumstance. The Giants had a first-and-goal at the seven-yard line when Jones dropped back, found no open receiver and tried to throw the ball beyond the back of the end zone. But he didn't throw it far enough and the ball was intercepted by Washington safety Kendall Fuller. Though Fuller's arm appeared to land on the end line, the pick was upheld after a review, giving Washington the ball with 51 seconds left in the third quarter.
WHAT WE LEARNED ABOUT THE DEFENSE:
Crowder – the 255th and final selection in the 2020 NFL Draft, became the hero when he scooped up Allen's fumble and raced 43 yards to the end zone with 3:29 remaining in the game. It was the Giants' first go-ahead defensive touchdown in the last four minutes of a fourth quarter or overtime since Oct. 31, 1999, when Michael Strahan scored on a 44-yard interception return in overtime to beat the Eagles in Philadelphia.
Crowder's touchdown was set up by Kyler Fackrell's eight-yard sack and forced fumble on Allen.
The defensive touchdown was the Giants' second in as many weeks. Last week in Dallas, Fackrell returned an interception 46 yards for a score.
It was the Giants' first fumble return touchdown since Markus Golden's 42-yard score on Oct. 10, 2019 at New England and the team's longest fumble return touchdown since Jason Pierre-Paul 43-yarder at Cleveland on Nov. 27, 2016.
James Bradberry continues to demonstrate why he was such a valuable free agent acquisition. The Giants' left cornerback picked up his team-leading second interception of the season when he grabbed a Kyle Allen pass intended for Terry McLaurin and returned it 19 yards to the Washington 27-yard line. Three plays later, Jones threw the touchdown pass to Slayton.
The Giants again displayed versatility in their secondary. When nickel corner Darnay Holmes left the game with a neck injury, Logan Ryan moved from free safety to the slot and Julian Loe took over at safety.
Love seemed to be good position on Logan Thomas in the end zone, but the Washington tight end caught the ball and acrobatically kept his feet inbounds for a five-yard touchdown pass with 13 seconds remaining in the first half.
Blake Martinez led the Giants with 14 tackles (eight solo).
WHAT WE LEARNED ABOUT SPECIAL TEAMS:
The Giants unveiled a new strategy on kickoffs. Graham Gano, who had 13 touchbacks and allowed only nine kickoff returns in the first five games, deliberately kicked the ball short of or two the goal line, giving a chance for the kickoff team to stop Washington short of the 25-yard line.
A costly special teams penalty led to Washington's touchdown late in the second quarter. The Giants forced a punt on fourth-and-nine from the Giants' 45-yard line. The ball was downed at the one-yard line, but when Austin Johnson was penalized five yards for running into the kicker, coach Ron Rivera elected to keep the ball with four yards to go. The decision paid off when Kyle Allen threw a 15-yard pass to Dontrelle Inman. Four plays later, after Blake Martinez's penalty for defensive holding, Thomas scored to pull Washington to within 13-10 at the half.
NYG: Wide receiver C.J. Board was carted off the field with 13:14 remaining in the third quarter with a concussion and a sprained neck. He was transported to a hospital for further evaluation. Rookie cornerback Darnay Holmes hurt his neck in the first quarter. Linebacker Blake Martinez and defensive lineman Dexter Lawrence were both evaluated for a possible concussion and were cleared to return.
WFT: Rookie Saahdiq Charles, who started at left tackle, limped off the field after the game's second play. He was replaced by Wes Schweitzer.
NYG: The Giants' inactive players were linebackers TJ Brunson and Lorenzo Carter (who underwent surgery last week to repair a torn Achilles tendon), safety Adrian Colbert, defensive tackle RJ McIntosh, tight end Eric Tomlinson and tackle Jackson Barton.
WFT: Washington's inactive players were quarterback Dwayne Haskins, tight end Marcus Baugh, guard Marcus Baugh, tackle David Sharpe, defensive end Nate Orchard and outside linebacker Thomas Davis.
NYG: Third-round draft choice Matt Peart made his first career start at left tackle in place of first-round selection Andrew Thomas, who started each of the first five games. Thomas returned to action in the first series of the second quarter. Peart played the first and third quarters and Thomas played in the second and fourth quarters.
Markus Golden started for the first time this season at outside linebacker, where Kyler Fackrell started for the second game in a row.
WFT: Deshazor Everett started at free safety in place of Troy Apke. Three-time Pro Bowler Brandon Scherff was activated off injured reserve and started at right guard. Rookie Saahdiq Charles started at left guard for Wes Martin.
View photos from the Week 6 matchup between the Giants and Washington at MetLife Stadium.