Penalties play giant role in loss

LANDOVER, Md. -- Making your way through the visiting locker room early Tuesday morning, you kept hearing the same word, over and over again:


Many Giants players, and coach Tom Coughlin, blamed the loss in large part on the Giants' sloppiness -- and they were right. Big Blue committed nine penalties, and several of them came in critical spots.

Here's a look at the key miscues:

• The Giants marched down the field on their first offensive drive of the game, but on 1st-and-10 from the Redskins' 23-yard line, right tackle Sean Locklear was flagged for a false start, which halted the Giants' momentum. The Giants weren't able to get another first down, and had to settle for a field goal.

• The Giants again advanced into Redskins territory on their second drive, but on 1st-and-10 from the Washington 30, Manning was charged with intentional grounding. New York again failed to pick up another first down, and this time Lawrence Tynes missed a 43-yard field goal attempt.

• After the Redskins scored a touchdown to go ahead 17-16 early in the fourth quarter, rookie David Wilson received the ensuing kickoff and raced all the way to midfield, setting the Giants up with excellent field position. But the kick return was called back, thanks to a holding penalty by reserve offensive lineman Jim Cordle. The Giants were instead forced to start that drive at their own 8-yard line, and went three-and-out.

• On the Giants' second drive of the fourth quarter, after forcing a Redskins punt, they faced a 3rd-and-10 from their own 43-yard line with 4:42 remaining. Manning connected with tight end Martellus Bennett for an 11-yard reception and a first down, in Washington territory -- but the play was nullified by a holding call on left tackle Will Beatty. That stuck the Giants with a 3rd-and-20, they did not convert, and that ended up being the Giants' last offensive possession of the game.

The Giants entered the game with the second-fewest penalties in the NFL (48). The Redskins, on the other hand, had the third-most (93).

But you wouldn't have guessed that from Monday night.