Skins Dominated

That's what an offense looks like, huh? Haven't seen that in a while, not in Washington at least. But the Redskins returned to what should be their identity: good, hard running. They controlled the tempo of the game from the beginning, another thing they'd been unable to do in recent weeks.

It helps that they faced a struggling team. New York is playing horribly right now on both sides of the ball. But Washington did what it should do in that case: it dominated.

Offensive MVP: The line deserves all the praise in this game. As well as Clinton Portis ran, Ladell Betts ran just as well, gaining 64 yards on 11 carries. And it was because of the line. On a number of Portis runs, he wasn't even touched for the first five yards thanks to a line blowing open holes. They provided Portis a chance to cut back and when he does that he becomes extremely dangerous. But he needs to get to that second level to succeed.

Defensive MVP: Once again, the line. Cornelius Griffin set a tone with a few nice early tackles at the line of scrimmage. Because the Giants had to pay close attention go the Redskins' defensive line, the linebackers were able to consistently make plays near the line of scrimmage.

Keep watching: Sean Taylor. The more I see of him, the more excited I get for his future -- if he matures. I don't worry about the 15-yard roughing penalty yesterday. You don't want that, but it was a close call and it was an aggressive play. But it's how the Redskins use him. Taylor is a backfield version of Jevon Kearse, someone who gets moved all over and keeps the offense guessing. He blitzed all over the place and lined up all over the secondary, sometimes in the slot and sometimes deep.

Efficiency: The Redskins consistently put Patrick Ramsey in situations that didn't require lots of heavy reading and it worked. He misfired on only three passes and was fairly accurate most of the time. He still threw mostly short passes and off bootlegs. But it worked. Ramsey showed he could throw on the run, something he hadn't previously exhibited. The Redskins used the bootleg fakes to get New York out of position and open passing lanes for Ramsey. He grew up a little bit in terms of managing the game. Before this season he was a thrower. He's starting to become, to borrow a baseball term, a pitcher. And that's what the Redskins need.

But wait: However, Ramsey still needs to work on a couple things to make sure this wasn't a one-game aberration. Certainly, no one expects such a game every week. But to become more consistent, when he's in the pocket he must cut down on staring at one wideout. He did so on a 20-yard pass to Laveranues Coles on the left side. Ramsey never took his eyes off Coles and the Giants easily defended the play. We realize this is nitpicking, but it's an important tactic for a quarterback.

Best run: On first down from his own 9, Portis got squeezed on the right side, but no Giant bothered to wrap him up and he slid through for a 19-yard gain, igniting another long scoring march.

Best play: The 4-yard shovel pass to Clinton Portis. What a nice play call. More misdirection, something the Redskins used all game.

Best sight: The first drive of the game for Washington, when it went 93 yards with the first five plays all Clinton Portis runs. Ramsey completed all four of his passes on this drive.

Worst sight: Phillip Daniels leaving the field with a dislocated wrist. It's his third injury of the season and likely his last as it'll probably end his year. Daniels is a good guy and a hard-working player but wasn't able to show Washington much. Worse, he had barely been injured before this season.

Boy Blunder: Eli Manning might be a good quarterback in a few years, but he's not close to being one right now. Redskins linebacker Antonio Pierce said, ''You could tell by looking in his eyes that he was confused.'' But the worst sight for Giants fans? After throwing low on a hitch route late in the game, Manning dropped his head and his shoulders drooped and looked like a lost soul. That's not what teammates want to see and it's why it'll take a couple years for him to excel.

Good effort: By Walt Harris to block a punt, leading to another touchdown. They gave the offense an easy touchdown drive, something they've had few of this season.

Bad effort: On the 92-yard kickoff return for a score, in which Taylor continued the one thing I dislike -- tackling at the shoulders. He missed and allowed Derrick Ward to scoot through the hole, as did Jason Doering who vacated his lane. Also, the special teams committed three penalties in the first quarter alone. P-U. Their efforts prevented Washington's first shutout since 1991.


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