Defense, Burress fuel G-Men’s win over ‘Skins
The 2008 NFL season started much in the same fashion the previous season ended.
Almost exactly seven months after they shocked the world by beating the previously unbeaten New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLII in February, the New York Giants successfully started their title defense on Thursday night with a 16-7 victory over the Washington Redskins at The Meadowlands.
Wide receiver Plaxico Burress, whose touchdown reception sealed the Super Bowl win, caught ten balls for 133 yards. His 11-yard reception on the game’s opening drive set up a one-yard TD run by Super Bowl MVP Eli Manning. Manning completed 19 of 35 passes for 216 yards. Running back Brandon Jacobs added 166 yards on the ground on 21 carries. New Giants kicker John Carney kicked field goals of 24, 25, and 46 yards to provide the rest of the scoring.
Meanwhile, the New York defense shut down new Washington head coach Jim Zorn’s West Coast offense much like it did Tom Brady and the Patriots’ record-breaking assault. The Giants defense was without its two starting defensive ends from last season—the injured Osi Umenyiora and retired Michael Strahan—but still held the Skins to 209 total yards and 11 first downs. Washington’s offense crossed mid-field only three times, the last of which was in the waning seconds.
Redskins quarterback Jason Campbell was 15 of 27 for just 133 yards. After Rock Cartwright returned a kickoff into Giants territory before the half, Campbell threw a twelve-yard touchdown pass to Santana Moss to account for the Washington scoring. Running back Clinton Portis rushed for 84 yards on 23 carries.
Burress and the Giants agreed to terms on a five-year, $35 million contract hours before the game and just 15 minutes before teams were required to report any contract changes to the league office. Burress, who still has three years remaining on his current contract, will be paid $11 million the first year of his newly signed deal.
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