Rookie linebacker Tae Crowder’s 43-yard return of a fumble for a tie-breaking touchdown and Dexter Lawrence sniffing out a two-point conversion attempt in the fourth quarter were the key plays in a 20-19 win Sunday that put to bed fears of the Giants finishing with just the NFL’s third-ever 0-16 record.
The victory was Joe Judge’s first as head coach of the Giants.
Beating Washington has been the one constant during a four-year malaise inflicting the Giants, who have earned five of their NFL-low 13 wins since 2017 at the expense of their fellow NFC East bottom-feeder.
Playing as a favorite for the first and maybe only time this season, the Giants (1-5) jumped out to a 10-point lead but were precariously positioned with less than four minutes to go. But Washington quarterback Kyle Allen was strip-sacked by Kyler Fackrell, and Crowder — the last pick of the 2020 NFL Draft — scooped and scored.
Daniel Jones snapped a four-game streak without a touchdown pass — the longest for the Giants since 1981 — with a 23-yard teardrop to his favorite target on third-and-6. All three of Jones’ touchdown passes this season have gone to Darius Slayton, who couldn’t slow his head of steam before banging his already injured foot against the sideline padding.