EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - New coaches, roster changes and even the deletion of a team nickname haven’t changed things on the field for the New York Giants and the Washington Football Club five games into the NFL season.
The long-time rivals are again bringing up the rear in a mediocre NFC East, a division that is wide open with Dallas (2-3) and Philadelphia (1-3-1) struggling.
Washington (1-4) and the Giants (0-5) will meet for the 177th time in a series that dates to 1932 when they play Sunday at MetLife Stadium. New York is looking for its first win under 38-year-old Joe Judge. Washington has lost four straight and changed quarterbacks since giving Ron Rivera a win in the season opener.
With 11 games left in the regular season, Rivera and Judge realize a few wins will get their teams back in the hunt. However, they also know their teams have to stop making mistakes and start playing complete games to win.
“You hear me talk about it; we have not sustained success," Rivera said. “When you watch the things that we do, you see it’ll be first-and-10, second-and-3 and then we’ll do something and end up at third-and-8. That’s the frustration is that we don’t sustain a positive thing. On the defensive side, same thing. We get a team into third-and-long and we’ll allow a first down. That’s the frustration, is that the consistency is not where it needs to be.”
Judge says he has been brutally honest with his young team. After every loss, the videotapes are reviewed and the good and bad discussed, as well as where they are as a team and what needs to improve.
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“That ties into obviously tangible results on the field with wins and losses,” he said. “It’s a production business. We’re all very conscious and aware of that. It’s my job to make sure they understand what we need to do better, what we need to clean up. But then it’s also my job to highlight and show them where they’ve made improvements and where we’ve made progress as a team, so they understand what we have really to build with.”
If there is a good piece of news for the Giants, it's they have played well against Washington, winning the last three games. Quarterback Daniel Jones threw for five touchdowns in December, when the team was known as the Redskins.