Post Game Chatter

<b>What went right</b><br><br> Derrick Ward was able to get into the end zone on special teams, something that hasn't happened in years.

Eli Manning, who was unable to get any offense going, got another game of experience under his belt.

The Giants 'held' Clinton Portis to under 149 yards.

Penalties actually didn't kill the Giants, for once. They had seven for 40 yards, but that was hardly the reason they lost.

Fans of former Giants coach Jim Fassel must love that he'll get to see this train wreck up close and in person Sunday in Baltimore.

The weather was beautiful, with a kickoff temperature of 61 degrees.

The Giants appeared to have gotten through the game with only one potential serious injury - LB Barrett Green sprained his ankle. (OK, we admit, we're stretching a little here.)

The game ended, much like the Giants' season.

What went wrong

The Redskins rammed the ball right down New York's throat on their first drive of the game, effortlessly marching 93 yards in 13 plays. Clinton Portis, who scored the 1-yard TD, had 49 yards on the drive.

The Skins did it again in the second quarter, chewing up 91 yards in 10 plays, with Portis taking it the final four yards on a shovel pass from Patrick Ramsey.

Redskins CB Shawn Springs made a beautiful diving pass defense on a deep ball to Jamaar Taylor in the second quarter.

Walt Harris blocked a Jeff Feagles punt; the second time in two weeks the Giants have allowed a punt to be blocked.

Tiki Barber fumbled for the second time this season, but at least New York recovered when Ike Hilliard came up with the ball at the bottom of the pile.

The Giants failed on a fourth-and-eight from the Washington 23 in the final period, thereby ending their closest chance of scoring offensively.

Fast facts
Giants record: 5-7
This time last year: 4-8
Time of game: 2:45
Attendance: 87,872

Stat worth noting: It's hard to win when you only have seven first downs, as the Giants did. The Redskins, who also out-gained New York 379 yards to 145, moved the sticks 27 times.

Stat worth noting II: The Redskins out-rushed New York 119-19 in the first half, controlling the clock for more than 18 of the game's first 30 minutes.

Turning point: The Redskins' first five offensive plays were a blatantly obvious foreshadowing of what was to come at FedEx Field Sunday. Clinton Portis got the ball on five straight plays and the Giants were basically helpless to stop him, as he rolled up 35 yards on those five carries en route to a first-drive TD, from which the Redskins never looked back.

Play to remember: The only decision that paid off for Tom Coughlin in Washington came when reserve RB Derrick Ward returned a kickoff 92 yards for a TD midway through the third quarter. Ward, who was subbing for usual KOR Willie Ponder, broke the initial line of defense and went the distance. It was New York's first regular season kickoff return for a score since Jason Sehorn returned an onsides kick 38 yards against Coughlin's Jacksonville Jaguars on Dec. 23, 2000.

Play to forget: On the Skins' first play of the second quarter, Portis got the call again. He looked to be stopped just past the line of scrimmage, but squirted through a couple of apparently disinterested Giants defenders and ended up with a 19-yard gain. That sparked Washington on its second 90-plus yard TD drive of the opening half.

By the numbers

1: Total third and fourth downs converted by the Giants out of 13 total opportunities.

3: Number of incomplete passes from Redskins QB Patrick Ramsey. He finished 19-of-22 for 174 yards and three TDs.

5: Consecutive losses for the Giants; they finished 2003 with eight straight losses.

29:19: Amount of time it took the Redskins to score their most points (21) in a game this season. Washington's previous high was 18 points.

What they said

"Flat is not the word. We physically got whipped up front, on both sides of the ball." - Giants coach Tom Coughlin

"You could look into (Eli Manning's) eyes and tell he was confused." - Redskins LB Antonio Pierce


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