LANHAM - The Washington Redskins had an opportunity to string together three consecutive wins to obtain their third-straight winning season, but failed to find any consistency against the New York Giants on Dec. 31.
Washington's disappointing season didn't finish on a high note as the Redskins fell to the Giants 18-10.
Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins had a season finale to forget as he threw three interceptions and only completed 20-of-37 passes for 158 yards.
"We just have to move on, and I think sometimes that happens when you try to force the issue a little bit, and you want your wide receivers to make some plays, but unfortunately that didn't happen," Washington Redskins Head Coach Jay Gruden said of Cousin's decision making.
New York started off with a bang as running back Orleans Darkwa took a handoff on the second play of the game for a 75-yard touchdown to strike first.
After the blocked PAT, Cousins threw an errant pass intended for Josh Doctson for an interception on his first throw of the afternoon. It only took two plays for the Giants to find paydirt as Eli Manning threw a perfect pass to Hunter Sharp for a touchdown.
Manning completed only 10 of his 28 attempts for 132 yards including one interception, but he managed to get the job done for his team down the stretch.
"It wasn't the prettiest game that I ever had, but it was good to get this win," Manning said. "It might not mean a whole lot to get the third win, but it does mean something to the players. To end the year on a good note is special."
Cousins did manage to make a play late in the first quarter after Redskins linebacker Preston Smith intercepted a pass and put his team in prime scoring position in Giants territory.
Just two plays later, with the ball on the Giants 12 yard line, Cousins ran a read option play and rushed to the left sideline to score a touchdown with his legs rather than his arm to cut the lead to only six points.
However, it was smooth sailing for the G-Men the rest of the way. Led by linebacker Kelvin Shepard (who had two interceptions) and defensive end Olivier Vernon sacking Cousins twice, the Giants held Washington to only 197 total yards and 10 first downs.
New York, on the other hand, flourished offensively accounting for 381 yards on the day and Darkwa rushed for 154 yards on the ground. Redskins kicker Dustin Hopkins hit a 49-yard field goal in the second quarter to answer a 23-yard make from Aldrick Rosas previously, but that was the final score of the Redskins 2017 football campaign.
Rosas tacked on another chip shot field goal in the fourth quarter for insurance to ice the Redskins for good. The Redskins couldn't have managed a better performance if they wanted to with an injury-riddled squad to close out the season.
"It wasn't good," Gruden said of his team's performance. "Nobody on offense played good, I called the plays too, and that was awful. We have a lot of work to do staff wise and myself and player wise."
As for the situation of Cousins returning to Washington for another year, there will be a wait and see approach moving into the offseason as the Redskins quarterback situation might be up in the air once again.
"I'm not in a position right now to give you an answer," Cousins said of his future in Washington. "There will be a lot of weeks leading to free agency that will allow for that. We have a lot of time to talk about it during the offseason."
"It's all about winning, that is certainly everyone's focus from the owner to the general manager, to the head coach, the team and the fan base. All we want to do is to win."