Washington Redskins (3-10 SU, 4-9 ATS) vs. New York Giants (4-9 SU, 5-8 ATS)
NFL Week 15
Date and Time: Sunday, December 14, 2014 at 1:00PM EST
Where: MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, New Jersey
by Scott, NFL Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: WAS +7/NYG -7
Over/Under Total: 46.5
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The Washington Redskins come to East Rutherford on Sunday to face the New York Giants in an NFC East battle. With the Redskins at 3-10 and the Giants at 4-9, this match-up lacks some of the importance of previous games between these longtime adversaries, but still presents an interesting betting conundrum. New York ended a 7-game losing streak on Sunday and showed they may still have some fight in them after a 36-7 win over Tennessee. The Redskins were shut out on Sunday, 24-0 to the Rams on the road.
As division rivals, these teams already met, with the Giants thumping the Skins, 45-14 on September 25. Now at home, the edge would appear to go to the Giants, though its been over two months since they won at home. In the first game, New York was in far better form than they are now. People were even hopeful about the Giants at that time. Things have cooled off a lot and the Redskins may not be running into that same Giants team on Sunday. Eli Manning was excellent for New York in September, going for 300 yards and 4 touchdowns. They ran the ball well and their defense had Washington in a quandary the entire game. Kirk Cousins was at QB in that game for the Redskins. In this game, it will either be RG3 or Colt McCoy.
The Redskins lost their 5th game in a row on Sunday, getting shut out in the process. Colt McCoy has a neck sprain and as of press time, its unclear if he will make a go of it on Sunday. Coach Jay Gruden may have to turn back to Robert Griffin, III., who he benched a few weeks ago after returning from injury. RG3s deterioration in terms of his on-field play and his standing within the organization has been striking. The former number-one pick is almost persona-non-grata on this team now.
The Giants won 36-7 on Sunday. That did come against a team in Tennessee that has really fallen off, but Washington is also in that realm. And this is where a very flawed team like the Giants can actually get some good business done. Against teams like Washington, bad teams that can struggle defensively, the New York offense can take flight.
The Giants unquestionably have seen their offense take a big step back this season, but not all is bad. Eli Manning can still air it out and has 3340 yards passing. New York added a weapon this season in rookie WR Odell Beckham, Jr. who has been fantastic. And while their running game has been inconsistent, Andre Williams and Rashad Jennings are a pair of guys who can have their moments. With good tight end play from Larry Donnell with receivers Preston Parker and Rueben Randle, this offense has some upside. And its not like Washingtons defense is that horrible–ranked 12th against the pass and 11th against the run. But they are 25th in points allowed. Chalk it up to turnovers, inconsistency, and a lack of clutch play.
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In addition to the injury to McCoy, which has left him questionable for Sunday, WR DeSean Jackson is also questionable with a leg contusion after missing the last game. Safety Brandon Merriweather is also questionable, adding to a list of players on defense who have missed time or are out for the season. Its been a rough year on the injury front for Washington. A big factor could be RB Alfred Morris, who actually isnt having a bad season. But its an offense mired in mediocrity with a quarterback situation that has grown almost toxic.
Washington won in week two to go to 1-1. They then lost four in a row, won two in a row, before embarking on this 5-game losing streak they are now in the midst of, entering the stretch run of 2014. They managed an overtime win against the Cowboys, but in their other two wins, beat the unexciting duo of Tennessee and Jacksonville. Its fair to ask what the Redskins have left in the gas tank at this point. Most of their losses have been pretty decisive and coming off a shutout to the Rams, its difficult to remain even minimally optimistic.
Even though The Redskins look to be swirling down the drain, one cant feel that comfortable taking a team like the Giants as a touchdown-favorite. Before beating Tennessee, they lost to Jacksonville. And while a lot of their games were close and they showed they have some fight left, there is no arguing that the Giants are far from being a bankable commodity, particularly in this role as a substantial favorite.
Both teams are bad and neither can really be depended on to come through in any situation. But it does seem like the Giants have a slightly-less dysfunctional vibe heading into the final stretch of the season. Washington has been ground down to a nub and I picture them again having a tough time with the Giants offense over 4 quarters. But as much hesitation one might have in taking the Redskins right now, taking the Giants as a 7-point favorite is hard to stomach.
Scott’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: Im betting on the Washington Redskins plus 7 points.