New York Giants vs. Washington Redskins Preview and Pick – Point Spread

Note: For the 2013 Week 13
game between these teams, please go here: New York Giants vs. Washington Redskins Pick.

New York Giants (7-6 SU, 5-6-1 ATS) vs. Washington Redskins (4-9 SU, 6-6-1 ATS), Week 15, 8:30 p.m. EST, Monday Night Football, December 21, 2009, FedEx Field, Landover, Md. TV: ESPN
by Ryno of

Point Spread: New York Giants -3/Washington Redskins +3
Over/Under: 44.

The New York Giants had an opportunity on Sunday night to force a three-way tie for the NFC East division lead if they could defeat the Philadelphia Eagles. The good news for the Giants in that game was that they scored 38 points. The bad news was that they allowed 45 points. Now, the Giants are two games back from first place in the division and their backs are against the wall as far as a playoff berth is concerned. The Washington Redskins, meanwhile, are not having a successful season. But they did finish strong on Sunday against the Oakland Raiders for a 34-13 victory.

The Redskins have had their share of injuries this season. Clinton Portis and Chris Cooley, arguably the two most important players on their offense, are out with injuries. And it’s not like the Redskins offense was strong to begin with. But players like Quinton Ganther, Devin Thomas and Jason Campbell are stepping up. After not scoring 30 points in any game this season, the Redskins scored 30 or more in each of their last two games.

Two weeks ago, the Redskins had a chance to upset the undefeated New Orleans Saints, holding a 30-20 lead in the fourth quarter. But the Saints rallied to score 10 points late in the fourth quarter and win it with a field goal in overtime. In the loss to the Saints, Campbell had arguably the best game of his career with 367 passing yards, three touchdowns and an interception. Thomas had seven receptions for 100 yards and two touchdowns. In the win over the Raiders, Campbell had 222 yards and two touchdowns. Ganther ran for 50 yards and two touchdowns. Fred Davis had three receptions for 50 yards and two touchdowns.

The Giants have had quite the up-and-down season, starting off 5-0, losing four in a row, and then going 2-2 since then. They’ve scored more than 30 points in three of their last four games, with a six-point effort against the Broncos mixed in there, so offense is not the problem. It’s their defense that has been lackluster, allowing 24 or more points in each of the last four games. On Sunday, they allowed 45 points to the Eagles. It’s tough to ever win a game when giving up that many points. Against the Eagles, Eli Manning threw for 391 yards and three touchdowns. Hakeem Nicks had four receptions for 110 yards and a touchdown. Steve Smith and Kevin Boss each seven receptions for 70 or more yards. And the Giants totaled 133 rushing yards. While the offense moved the ball well and the defense didn’t earn many stops, the Giants also couldn’t protect the ball. They lost four fumbles in the game, including two lost by Manning.

The Redskins may have scored 30 or more points in each of their last two games, but they still don’t have a very strong offense. They are just executing better. Campbell, Ganther, Santana Moss and crew are not incredible players. The Giants defense needs to step up and force the Redskins into 3rd-and-longs. The Redskins also have a strong defense, so the Giants probably will have a tough time scoring more than 30 points again. This is going to be a hard-fought, physical division game between a team in desperate need of a win (Giants) and a team playing its best football of the season right now and has nothing to lose (Redskins). The team that executes on offense better and doesn’t turn the ball over is going to be the team that wins this game.

The Giants are 1-7 ATS in their last eight games, but 17-5 ATS in their last 22 road games. The total has gone over in four of their last six games. The Redskins are 5-0 ATS in their last five games. The total has gone over in six of their last seven games.

Ryno’s Pick: The Redskins have been disrespected by Vegas lately after starting off slow, but five straight ATS wins are pretty impressive. The Giants have been very inconsistent and their defense has been poor. A bad defense against a hot offense is not a good combination. The Redskins have one of the best pass defenses in the league and they will make it tough for Manning to complete passes. The Giants haven’t been running the ball very well lately, so it’s unlikely they will start doing so now against a strong defense. As long as Campbell continues to play smart and doesn’t turn the ball over, the Redskins could easily win this game at home. The Giants are 1-7 ATS in their last eight games and the Redskins are 5-0 ATS in their last five games, and nothing will change. Take the Redskins plus the 3 points to cover the spread.