On Thursday night the Redskins were off to an inauspicious start as they went three-and-out and were forced to punt. Tom Coughlin decided to running Rashad Jennings on the defensive line for the special teams unit and the running back deflected the punt into the back of the end zone that resulted in a safety. On the next Redskins drive is when the real momentum swing occurred as it felt almost like destiny that the Giants would win after Prince came up with an interception deep in Washington Redskin territory.
Cornerback Prince Amukamara was asked about the play and credited his film study during the week which helped him identify Washington's tendencies.
“Just formation recognition," admitted Amukamara. "Coach Walton, my DB coach, gave me that tip earlier this week. It was one of those formations that I just memorized.”
So thank you Coach Walton?
To be honest it doesn’t matter who gets the credit for the big play because the fact of the matter is that the G-men didn’t look back since as they went on to win 32-21. Being a pessimist is the last thing for any Giants fan to do right now as a win is a win but picking off Cousins doesn’t really say much as there is still plenty of season left.
After getting beat by pro bowler wide receiver, Julio Jones, for what turned out to be a crucial touchdown, Amukamara felt like he let down not only his teammates, fans, and coach but most importantly himself. The former first round pick is expected to be the anchor of the suddenly short handed defense this year. Making a huge play against the division rival Redskins was a huge redemption for the Giants cornerback.
"I definitely thought about that when I got the pick because that was the last play that I left on the field," said Amukamara. "It’s like when you play basketball, well when I play basketball, before I leave I like to make the last shot just so I leave on a good note. If I miss the last shot, it just sticks with me and that’s how I felt with the Julio play. I missed the play and it stuck with me, but good thing we had a quick turnaround, a short week. Now I have a sweeter taste in my mouth."
Blowing two fourth quarter double digit leads is one thing but blowing three in a row would have most likely caused a riot at the Meadowlands. This time around Big Blue finished strong and secured their first win of the season. Despite the special teams surrending a 101-yard kickoff return in the fourth quarter, the Giants still had a large enough lead to hold off the game thanks to touchdown catches by Odell Beckham Jr and Reuben Randlet
. Getting Victor Cruz back healthy will be essential to the Giants success this year but getting better cornerback play from Prince Amukamara can turn out to be the bigger X-factor without the help a good pash rush for the first time in years. Giants fans cross your fingers, with the exception of Jason Pierre-Paul, because it's going to be a bumpy ride.