5 things to know after Giants beat Redskins 20-6

After standing on the field in a drenching rain for more than

three hours at MetLife Stadium, Tom Coughlin and Mike Shanahan met

at midfield and wished each other well.

It was the same thing the two 60-something head coaches had done

twice a year for the past four years when the Washington Redskins

played the New York Giants.

When they did it Sunday after the Giants’ 20-6 victory, it was

different. It was the last time.

A year after leading the Redskins to the NFC East title,

Shanahan was fired on Monday after a 3-13 season that ended with

eight straight losses.

Shanahan met with owner Daniel Snyder on Monday.

”Redskins fans deserve a better result,” Snyder said in a

statement. ”We thank Mike for his efforts on behalf of the

Redskins. We will focus on what it takes to build a winning team,

and my pledge to this organization and to this community is to

continue to commit the resources and talent necessary to put this

team back in the playoffs.”

Shanahan made a five-minute statement thanking fans, players,

reporters and Snyder but did not take questions. He defended his

efforts in rebuilding the Redskins while repeating his assertion

that an NFL-levied salary cap penalty hindered his ability to

improve the roster even more.

”We’re better off today than we were four years ago,” he

said.

While the Giants (7-9) have missed the playoffs four of the past

five years, Coughlin seemingly is not in trouble. The Giants’

owners have a great amount of respect for the man who led them to

Super Bowl titles after the 2007 and ’11 seasons. This also might

have been one of his better coaching jobs. After the Giants lost

their first six games, the 67-year-old led a banged-up team to a

7-3 record.

Coughlin refused to discuss his future, but players said they

would be shocked if he did not return.

”I hope he’s back and he said he wants to be back and the

Giants want him back,” said quarterback Eli Manning, who was

knocked out of the game late in the first half with a sprained left

ankle. ”You never know how these things work out, but I definitely

hope that he’s the coach of the Giants next year.”

Manning finished 10 of 24 for 152 yards in his 151st straight

start. He threw his career-high 27th interception of the season,

but also connected with Jerrel Jernigan on a 24-yard touchdown pass

that gave the Giants the lead for good.

Jernigan also scored on a 49-yard run and Josh Brown kicked two

field goals.

Kai Forbath kicked two field goals for Washington after Giants

turnovers.

Five things we learned from the regular-season finale between

the teams that won the last two NFC East crowns:

JERNIGAN’S EMERGENCE: Since taking over for an injured Victor

Cruz three weeks ago, the seldom-used Jernigan has 19 catches for

237 yards and two TDs. He also scored on an end around on Sunday.

He clearly has earned a spot in the passing rotation next

season.

BYE BYE LONDON: Redskins linebacker London Fletcher played in

his 256th consecutive game and probably the last one of his 16-year

career. He finished with 215 consecutive starts, most for an NFL

linebacker. ”It feels like we lost the Super Bowl for me,” he

said. ”That’ll probably be my story at the end of it. Twenty years

from now, I lost my final game in New York the year the Super Bowl

was there.”

POISED GIANTS: Despite losing their first six games, the Giants

showed a lot of character this season. ”We’re a never-quit and

never-die locker room,” safety Antrel Rolle said. ”No matter how

tough times may get, tough times never last, tough people always do

and this is an extremely tough football team. ”

GET HEALTHY, RGIII: While Kirk Cousins played well at times

filling in at quarterback for Griffin in the final three weeks, he

doesn’t present that added run option. The Giants limited Alfred

Morris to 62 yards rushing and that forced Cousins to throw. He was

19 of 49 for 169 yards, two interceptions and a lost fumble.

GIANTS LINE: The Giants offensive line was banged up all season

and there is now one more concern with left tackle Will Beatty

breaking a leg Sunday. During this season, center David Baas was

lost to a knee injury and Chris Snee was lost to a hip injury.

Guard David Diehl finished his 11th season and his future is in

doubt. The Giants need help next season.