The New York Giants will be heading into the den of one of the key competitors in the race for the NFC East crown.
No, not in Philadelphia or Dallas, but Washington.
In a true encompassment of 2020, the 2-5 Washington Football Team is very much in the thick of the hunt for supremacy in the NFC East. A win on Sunday afternoon (1 p.m. ET, FOX) against the Giants would see them move to within a half-game of the division-leading Eagles, who are on a bye week.
But the Giants’ lone win amidst a horrendous 1-7 start came against the very same Washington side, coming up with a last-minute defensive stop on a two-point conversion that would have won WFT the game in Week 6.
The Giants defense did just enough to secure the victory, taking advantage of key mistakes from Washington quarterback, Kyle Allen.
An easily-read interception by James Bradberry led to a Giants touchdown before Allen was strip-sacked. His fumble was returned by New York defender, Tae Crowder, for the game-winning score in the 20-19 decision.
The mistakes overshadowed what was a decent enough performance in which he completed 31-of-42 passes for 280 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
It was just his second start of the season after Washington opted to bench second-year passer Dwayne Haskins after a difficult start to the season.
He answered with a better-managed performance against the Dallas Cowboys in Week 7, throwing for 194 yards and two touchdowns in a surprising 25-3 win.
Now coming off a bye week, Washington is rested and ready for a Giants team working on a short week following another close loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
With it came more questions about the legitimacy of Daniel Jones truly being the franchise’s quarterback of the future, throwing two costly interceptions in the 25-23 loss.
The turnover bug continues to stymie the development of the second-year product out of Duke as he leads the NFL with 13 interceptions. Sitting with the second-worst record in all of football, it puts the Giants on pace to draft another quarterback with a top-two pick in the 2021 draft.
He was barely utilized in the Giants’ last matchup against Washington, attempting just 19 passes — completing 12 of them for 112 yards with a touchdown and an interception.
It was an obvious gameplan considering his difficulties with pocket awareness and dealing with an aggressive pass rush, which is exactly what Washington possesses.
The Giants attempted to add another weapon to Jones’ ranks to try and get him going on a more consistent basis, claiming wide receiver Dante Pettis off waivers. But it’s more likely the Giants try to get their run game going early to keep Washington’s pass rush at bay. Despite the bye week, Washington still ranks sixth in the NFL with 22 sacks.
If they go down early, though, it will be up to Jones to get them out of it. And another clunker of a performance will only heap more pressure on the Giants to make a change as the second half of the 2020 season gets underway.