Final

Redskins 7

(0-1, 0-1 away)

Giants 16

(1-0, 1-0 home)

Coverage: NBC

7:00 PM ET, September 4, 2008

Giants Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ 

1 2 3 4 T
WSH 0 7 0 07
NYG 10 6 0 016

Top Performers

Passing: E. Manning (NYG) - 216 YDS, 1 INT

Rushing: B. Jacobs (NYG) - 21 CAR, 116 YDS

Receiving: P. Burress (NYG) - 10 REC, 133 YDS

Giants' defense has little problem shutting down new-look Redskins

Associated Press

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- The New York Giants won the Super Bowl with defense and they kicked off defense of that title with more of the same.

Loving The Spotlight

Plaxico Burress is no stranger to playing on the big stage and showed his spotlight mettle in New York's season opener. It was the second straight season opener in which Burress set a career high in a category (last year it was TDs, this year its receptions).

Plaxico Burress,
In Last 2 Season Openers
2007 2008
Opponent at Cowboys vs. Redskins
Rec 8 10
Rec yds 144 133
Rec TDs 3 0

Playing without the retired Michael Strahan and Pro Bowl lineman Osi Umenyiora, New York limited the new-look Washington Redskins to 11 first downs and 209 total yards and gave indications that these Giants are back for another run in a 16-7 victory that ushered in the NFL season Thursday night.

"We played well and it's no surprise to us," defensive tackle Barry Cofield said. "We feel like we got capable guys and we held them for very few yards other than the two-minute situations where the got most of their yardage. We are confident in our defense and feel like if we stick with the scheme we'll have success all year."

NFC East

ESPN.com's Matt Mosley writes that Plaxico Burress, fresh off signing a new contract, showed his worth in Thursday's season opener . Blog

• Blog network: NFL Nation

Super Bowl MVP Eli Manning, Plaxico Burress and the rest of the offense that started the Super Bowl against the New England Patriots also came up big in spoiling the debut of Redskins coach Jim Zorn and his West Coast offense.

Manning capped a game-opening 84-yard drive with a 1-yard touchdown run and recently signed John Carney kicked three field goals as the Giants scored on their first four possessions in posting a rare home win. They won their final 11 away from Giants Stadium in capturing their third Super Bowl, but they were 3-5 at home, losing the last four games.

The win capped a fun-filled opening night for Giants fans, who saw the retired Strahan hold up the Lombardi Trophy just minutes before the opening kickoff.

"It was a great opening to the season," said Manning, who completed 19 of 35 for 216 yards and an interception. "There was a lot of emotion, a lot of excitement. You could feel it in the crowd. It was great to see Michael holding the trophy.

"It was a great crowd. They were fired up. It was good to play well at home and to win a game at home. It's been a while."

Coordinator Steve Spagnuolo and his defense made sure the home woes came to an end. In the process he might have made Redskins owner Dan Synder think twice about trying harder to hire him.

Spagnuolo was a serious candidate to replace Joe Gibbs until backing out to stay with the Giants.

Redskins vs. Giants

NFL.com Video

Highlights of the Giants' 16-7 victory over the Redskins

Zorn eventually got the job, but his offense did little against Spagnuolo's aggressive defense, which limited Washington to three of 13 third-down conversions.

Jason Campbell threw a 12-yard touchdown pass to Santana Moss with 13 seconds to play in the first half to account for the Redskins' points. The score was set up by a Giants' special teams lapse, a 50-yard kickoff return by Rock Cartwright.

Washington only got in New York territory three times in the game, the last time in the final seconds.

"A team held us to three and out for over half the game," said Redskins halfback Clinton Portis, who had 84 yards on 23 carries. "We have to be better than that."

The only concern for the Giants was that defensive end Mathias Kiwanuka went down with an ankle injury on the final play, but he said after the game that he was OK. He was switched from linebacker to end when Umenyiora was lost for the season with a knee injury in the preseason.

Other than that the game belonged to the Giants, who have been overlooked when it comes to their chances of repeating. Their odds were 25-1 heading into the game.

"We are not worried about what people are saying," middle linebacker Antonio Pierce said. "We are trying to win games. You have to get to the Super Bowl to repeat, and if we don't make the playoffs if won't matter. Right now our goal is to win the division. You win the division and the playoffs and then you think about repeating."

Tough Start

Jim Zorn had a rough first outing with the Redskins. But he isn't the first Washington coach to lose his debut. Even the great Joe Gibbs lost in his first start.

Redskins Coaching Debuts
Since 1981
Year Coach Opponent Result
'08 Jim Zorn Giants Lost
'02 Steve Spurrier Cardinals Won
'00 Terry Robiskie* Cowboys Lost
'94 Norv Turner Seahawks Lost
'93 Richie Petitbon Cowboys Won
'81 Joe Gibbs Cowboys Lost
*Interim head coach

Manning, Burress (10 catches for 133 yards) and halfback Brandon Jacobs (21 carries for 116 yards) had the fans on their feet time for most of the first half.

Manning completed passes of 30, 19 and 11 yards to Burress, who signed a two-year contract extension just hours before the game that will pay him an average of $7 million annually for the next five years.

Burress more than earned his money on the 11-play opening drive. His 11-yard catch got the ball close and Manning scored on a naked rollout one play after a pass-interference penalty gave New York a first-and-goal at the 1.

Carney, signed on Saturday after a knee injury sidelined Lawrence Tynes, kicked a 24-yard field goal to push the lead to 10-0 on the Giants' second possession. It capped a nine-play, 45-yard drive that featured a bruising 17-yard run by Jacobs on which he bowled over safety LaRon Landry.

The Giants' defense, which led the league with 53 sacks last season, contributed to the score by forcing Washington to a three-and-out series in Zorn's debut of the West Coast offense.

Justin Tuck, who replaced Strahan at left end, started the series, with a sack.

Carney's 25-yarder was set up by a 23-yard pass to Sinorice Moss, Santana's brother. The drive for the third field goal was highlighted by a 24-yard run by Jacobs that was one step away from a 70-yard touchdown run until Landry got him around the ankle.

Campbell finished 15-of-27 for 133 yards, but he was very ineffective on third down. Washington had the ball for less than 25 minutes.

"The thing that hurt us was not converting those first downs when we had the opportunity," Zorn said. "We had third-and-6 and we'd made 5. We'd have third-and-9 and make 8 1/2. We'd have third-and-7 and make 6. We just couldn't get over that line."

Notes
There was only one turnover, an interception by Redskins cornerback Fred Smoot in the third quarter. ... Redskins middle linebacker London Fletcher had a game-high 17 tackles, 12 solo. ... Cornerback Aaron Ross led the Giants with eight. ...Redskins starting CB Shawn Springs was inactive because of a shin injury. ... DE Jason Taylor had two tackles in his Washington debut. ... Antwaan Randle El has seven catches for 73 yards to lead Washington.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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Team Stat Comparison

 
WSH
NYG
1st Downs1121
Passing 1st downs
510
Rushing 1st downs
310
1st downs from penalties
31
3rd down efficiency
3-137-14
4th down efficiency
1-20-0
Total Plays5269
Total Yards209354
Yards per play4.05.1
Total Drives1010
Passing125200
Comp-Att
15-2719-35
Yards per pass
4.55.4
Interceptions thrown
01
Sacks-Yards Lost
1-82-16
Rushing84154
Rushing Attempts
2432
Yards per rush
3.54.8
Red Zone (Made-Att)1-11-3
Penalties7-357-70
Turnovers01
Fumbles lost
00
Interceptions thrown
01
Defensive / Special Teams TDs00
Possession24:1735:43

Passing Leaders

WSHC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTSACKS
Campbell15/271334.9101-8
NYGC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTSACKS
Manning19/352166.2012-16

Rushing Leaders

WSHCARYDSAVGTDLG
Portis23843.7023
Betts100.000
NYGCARYDSAVGTDLG
Jacobs211165.5024
Ward9394.3010

Receiving Leaders

WSHRECYDSAVGTDLG
Randle El77310.4026
Moss5377.4112
NYGRECYDSAVGTDLG
Burress1013313.3030
Moss12323.0023

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERWSHNYG
nygTD10:01Eli Manning, 1 yd run (John Carney kick is good)
Drive info: 11 plays, 84 yds, 5:06
07
nygFG3:03John Carney 24 yd Field Goal
Drive info: 9 plays, 45 yds, 4:38
010
SECOND QUARTERWSHNYG
nygFG11:03John Carney 25 yd Field Goal
Drive info: 11 plays, 62 yds, 4:17
013
nygFG2:13John Carney 47 yd Field Goal
Drive info: 11 plays, 57 yds, 6:21
016
wshTD0:20Santana Moss, 12 yd pass from Jason Campbell (Shaun Suisham kick is good)
Drive info: 6 plays, 45 yds, 1:47
716