EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — The feeling of anger and frustration that the New York Giants felt after losing their first game under coach Ben McAdoo has been replaced with the realization that it’s one game.
The Giants (2-1) have 13 games left in the regular season and the next month is not going to be easy with games at Minnesota (3-0) and Green Bay (2-1) followed by a home game against Baltimore and one against the Rams (2-1) in London.
The goal now is to stay focused, something the Giants didn’t do in dropping a 29-27 decision to Washington on Sunday. They turned the ball over three times and had 11 penalties for 128 yards.
“It is the National Football League, so you are going to have weeks like that, but it is just all about how the guys respond and take it to next week’s game, which is what is pretty cool about the NFL — you always have the following week to prove yourself, especially early on in the year,” defensive tackle Damon Harrison said Tuesday.
“We have some pretty good football players and some pretty good coaches and I think that everyone is doing a good job of refocusing on the task at hand.”
After playing well in the first two games, the defense struggled against Kirk Cousins and the Redskins for a number of reasons.
Cornerbacks Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (groin) and rookie first-round pick Eli Apple (hamstring) were knocked out of the game. The pressure on Cousins was inconsistent and there were way too many big plays.
In beating Dallas and New Orleans, the Giants allowed only three passes of 20 yards or more, the longest being 23 yards. Washington had six passes of 20 yards or more, including touchdown catches of 44 and 55 yards.
“No matter what position we are put in defensively, our job is to go out there and defend the grass behind us and prevent points and we didn’t do that as well as we have done in the previous weeks this past Sunday,” Harrison said.
“All of the stuff that we did wrong is correctable. It is nothing that anyone should be panicking or worrying about. We just have to go back out this week, have a great week of practice and get back to the basics.”
The offense also has to pick things up. Maybe it would be better to say they have to stop being so generous with the ball.
Eli Manning has 350 yards passing and the offense gained 457 yards, but turning the ball over was the difference.
Manning threw two interceptions, the first coming early in the fourth quarter on a first-and-10 from the Washington 15. Kick a field goal on that drive and the two-point loss might be a win.
“We’re locked in, we’re ready to go,” left guard Justin Pugh said. “I think this is something that’s going to be huge for us. These next four games; obviously you have two away games against some good teams … some really good teams.
“So everyone’s got to be all in. We’ve got to focus in and get ready to go. Obviously, leading up until the bye week, this four-game stretch is huge for us.”
NOTES: The Giants placed RB Shane Vereen on injured reserve with a torn triceps muscle. … CB Michael Hunter was re-signed to take his place on the roster. Hunter was added to the roster from the practice squad last week, but was waived before Sunday’s game when a foot injury prevented S Darian Thompson from playing. Andrew Adams then was signed from the practice squad to give the team three safeties for the game. … DB Doran Grant was signed to the practice squad. He played in three games with Pittsburgh last season.