By Jeff Freier on November 30th, 2008 7:14 PM
That was easy. Plaxico Burress shooting himself in the leg was no distraction for the Giants, as they handled their division rival down in DC (or Maryland, wherever), 23-7. Big Blue has now won seven straight games, and the last six have come against teams with winning records. They’re steamrolling right through the tough part of their schedule.
Plaxico Burress shot himself in the leg. (Are the Giants covering something up, by the way? He only played three downs last week. Maybe he shot himself when he was reaching for that pass right before he left the game in Arizona.) He wasn’t going to play anyway with his bad hammy, but his absence just paves the way for more playing time for Domenik Hixon. The Redskins defense keyed in on the run all game long, forcing the Giants to try and beat them by passing the ball. Didn’t they watch the game last week against the Cardinals? Stop the run? No problem. Eli Manning will beat you through the air. He spread the ball around, with three receivers catching five passes, and six players hauling in passes in all. Manning finished by throwing for over 300 yards (305 to be exact) for the first time since last October, and was 21 for 34, with one touchdown and one interception. And he threw for a career-high 239 yards in the first half. He’s having the efficient, high-percentage, low-mistake games everybody’s been looking for throughout his career.
Amani Toomer (85 yards and a TD), Derrick Ward (75 receiving yards) and Hixon (71 yards) all caught five passes. Kevin Boss had three, Steve Smith two and Sinorice Moss one. The Giants’ league-leading rushing game only managed 108 yards today. But after controlling the game in the air, their ground game came alive in the second half to chew some time off the clock. Brandon Jacobs piled up a measly 14 yards in the first half, but tacked on 57 in the second half, for 71 total. Ward added 30, and had 105 total rushing/passing yards combined.
The defense stopped Clinton Portis cold. He came up lame a couple of times, but the league’s leading rusher only scraped together 22 yards. The only time the Redskins offense could muster up anything was through trickery. They scored their only touchdown on a reverse that fooled everybody on the Giants defense. Even Lawrence Taylor went the wrong way heading to his kitchen for a fresh bag of Bugles. Aaron Ross came up with another interception. Justin Tuck sacked Jason Campbell twice, and Barry Cofield and Renaldo Wynn had one each. They stopped Washington twice on fourth downs in the last quarter, sealing the game.
The Jints were only penalized three times, after committing way too many fouls the last few games. Tom Coughlin has to be happy about that. John Carney was three for three in field goal attempts. What a year he’s having. His only miss for the season is a blocked field goal. And he makes Jeff Feagles feel young just by being around.
Plaxico Burress shot himself in the leg. I guess it’s bad if you shoot yourself in the leg. But it happens more often than you’d think. How many times has this happened to you: you’re walking to the corner deli to pick up a two-pack of Funny Bones and a can of Schlitz for breakfast, when you trip over a homeless guy and your gun accidentally goes off, shooting yourself in the thigh. Or you’re in a meeting at work, your underwear starts riding up on you, you make some adjustments and the next thing you know you’re in the back of an ambulance because you shot yourself in the leg. Or you’re eating Thanksgiving dinner, your Aunt Ethel asks you to pass the gravy, you shoot yourself in the leg and on top of that spill cranberry sauce all over your one “good” shirt.
Plaxico Burress shot himself in the leg. Some professional athletes feel they need to carry a weapon to protect themselves. The only person Plaxico Burress needs protection from is himself. And maybe Tom Coughlin. The Giants can win with him and they can win without him. They probably don’t even think of him as part of the team anymore. Maybe they should just have him sit at the end of the Knicks bench every game, in the Stephon Marbury Memorial We Just Don’t Want You Anymore Seat.
Next game: Sunday at 1:00 vs. Philadelphia.
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