NFC East Review: Giants Look Super, Redskins Charging Hard
With five weeks remaining in the regular season, it certainly appears that the New York Giants have a stranglehold on the NFC East division.
After smashing the Green Bay Packers on Sunday night, the Giants (7-4) hold a 2-game lead on both Washington and Dallas – with an important game on tap in Washington next Monday night.
But just about anything can happen in a five-game span – meaning the division race is anything but over.
Here is what we learned in Week 12 of the 2012 NFL season:
The Giants are capable of beating anyone
Alright, we already knew that, considering the Giants have won two Super Bowl titles in the past five years. But just a week after getting shellacked by an average Cincinnati team, New York reminded everyone just how good they can be by demolishing Green Bay, 38-10.
Eli Manning found his groove again, ending his TD drought with 3 scoring tosses, and getting a nice boost from a ground game that produced 147 yards (with three RB, and Manning, chipping in). Hakeem Nicks and Victor Cruz did their thing – scoring TDs – by each finding the end zone.
And the defense did what it does best – getting turnovers and sacking the QB. The Giants forced a pair of turnovers and sacked Aaron Rodgers 5 times.
The Giants are 1 game ahead of last year’s pace through 11 games; after going 6-5 through Week 12, the 2011 Giants dropped 2 of 3 games to fall to 7-7, before winning 6 in a row, culminating in a Super Bowl title.
New York gets another nationally televised game in Week 13, facing Washington on MNF.
‘Skins not done yet
Remember when Mike Shanahan made it seem as if the Washington Redskins were throwing in the towel on the 2012 season? Never mind that – the ‘Skins are a Week 13 Monday Night win away from being right in the thick of things.
The rookies came through again for Washington in their Thanksgiving Day win over Dallas; Robert Griffin III passed for 311 yards and 4 TDs, and Alfred Morris ran for 113 yards and 1 TD in the Redskins’ 38-31 win over the Cowboys.
Stat of the week: Through 11 games, rookies RG3 (2,504 passing and 642 rushing yards) and Morris (982 rushing yards) have had a hand in 93.7% of Washington’s offensive production this season – all but 279 yards (Kirk Cousins has passed for 111 yards and 11 other players have accounted for 168 rushing yards).
The defense continue to be one of the most ineffective units in the league – ranked 28th in yards allowed per game and 25th in PPG – but with an offense that can churn out the yards and points that Washington is, the Redskins are in just about every game.