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PFF ReFo: Redskins @ Giants

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  • PFF ReFo: Redskins @ Giants

    Excerpt: "Ah, so this is football. Last week I had the ‘pleasure’ of spending eight hours with a rewind button examining the Chiefs attempting to take on the Buccaneers and praying for a contest. Well, this game met that criterion in every sense of the word. Five lead changes, some excellent passing, running and blocking with a smattering of decent defense thrown in to keep things meaningful.

    While the Redskins may have lost, the way Robert Griffin III is playing their season is already a success. Together with his coaches, they have taken a franchise that was struggling to remain relevant in the NFC East and made it as exciting and difficult to beat as any of the other teams in the division. They’ve still got a ways to go, and it’s possible that just as the offense begins to take shape the defense may be showing signs of decay, but it’s encouraging.

    The Giants will be delighted with the win, but underlying a decent record they are also a team with new strengths and some developing weaknesses. Let’s check it all out.

    Giants – Three Performances of Note

    V for Victor (y)
    By George, the young scamp has gone and done it again. Victor Cruz (+2.1) seems to be making rather a habit of pulling the Giants out of a hole. On this occasion he just blew past two (rather pedestrian looking) defenders en route to a game-winning 77-yard score. However, that was just icing as he’d already had a pretty solid day regardless, playing on all bar one pass play and generating four first-down receptions. For the season he’s broadly playing 50% of his snaps in the slot and that was again the case in this game, splitting his 58 plays right down the middle, outside and slot.With Hakeem Nicks still looking a little less than healthy, Cruz is picking up the slack and enjoying every minute of it.

    Secondary SalvageWith Kenny Phillips still ruled out by knee injury the New York secondary is shipping water badly and often looks close to sinking. Corey Webster looks like his confidence is shot (this was his seventh negatively-graded game out of seven this year) and Jayron Hosley is a long way from the finished article. Among the corners it’s falling to Prince Amukamara (+1.7) to keep things on an even keel. After coming back from injury in Week 3 he’s consistently played well and again he looked the pick of a poor bunch. Although his stats don’t scream ‘Amukamara Island’ just yet (three receptions on five targets for 41 yards with a pass defensed), he’s been reliable and that, in the context of this defense, is extremely valuable.

    Where’s the Rush?
    When people talk about the best current pass-rushing defensive lines, the Giants still frequent many lists, but I’m not sure why. The Giants simply aren’t as productive as they used to be, and chief among the culprits is Osi Umenyiora (-0.3). It’s not that he was shut out here (indeed he picked up a sack and hurry on 21 attempts to get to the QB) but he just doesn’t strike fear into offensive tackles as he used to. Last year his 11.3 pass rushing productivity rating was eighth among 4-3 ends, but this year that’s down to 7.3 and he’s plummeted to 33rd (just one place above team-mate Justin Tuck).This is a line that is now basing its reputation on one player, Jason Pierre Paul, and as the others production falls so does his. It needs Umenyiora to re-find his mojo, and quickly." Read more...
    “Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level and beat you with experience.” MB Rule # 1