Giants, Jernigan add to Shanahan, Skins’ woes

If this was Mike Shanahan’s final game as the Washington

Redskins’ coach, it was just as disappointing as the season.

It was yet another loss in a year many expected the Redskins to

repeat as NFC East champs. This one was ugly, too.

Jerrel Jernigan caught a 24-yard touchdown pass and ran 49 yards

for another to lead the New York Giants to a 20-6 victory over

Washington on Sunday, handing the inept Redskins (3-13) their

eighth straight loss.

Shanahan refused to address his future after the game. He plans

to meet with team owner Daniel Snyder on Monday.

”We’ve been talking about this for a few weeks now and we’ll

get a chance to talk tomorrow (with Dan) and I’ll share that

conversation with you,” Shanahan said.

There are many who feel the 61-year-old coach won’t be back

because of his shaky relationship with oft-injured franchise

quarterback Robert Griffin III.

Offensive tackle Trent Williams hopes Shanahan returns.

”I would hate to see him get the brunt of the blame for our

season when we as players just didn’t play well this whole

season,” Williams said. ”We had great game plans, we were coached

on the right things to do and we continued to come up short. To me,

I don’t think it has anything to do with the coaching staff, it’s

us, us players.”

Receiver Santana Moss said the Redskins never overcame their 1-4

start.

”We caught a wave we couldn’t get off of,” Moss said. ”Once

we did, the wave just drowned us.”

The Giants (7-9) also aren’t going to the playoffs, but they won

seven of their last 10 after losing their first six games. It’s a

finish that probably will have two-time Super Bowl winning coach

Tom Coughlin back next season, unless the 67-year-old decides he

has had enough.

Coughlin also refused to address his future.

”I was proud of the way they stayed together as a team,” he

said. ”We had good leadership. Our captains did a nice job and

they can’t do it alone. The attitude and the approach that this

team took regardless of some of the very difficult Mondays that we

had was very impressive from the standpoint of maturity and

professionalism.”

The Giants also showed poise Sunday, keeping things together

after losing Eli Manning at the end of the first half with a high

sprain to his left ankle.

”It’s serious but you know it will heal,” said Manning, who

finished 10 of 24 for 152 yards with a touchdown and his

career-high 27th interception. ”I have an offseason to do that.

I’m not worried out there being a lasting effect.”

The game was the final one at MetLife Stadium until the Super

Bowl on Feb. 2. This one was about as ugly as it gets, and the

constant rain and injuries didn’t help.

Besides Manning, the Giants lost receivers Rueben Randle (knee),

Hakeem Nicks (ankle) and offensive tackle Will Beatty (broken leg)

in the regular-season finale. The Redskins saw cornerback Josh

Wilson (calf) and defensive end Jarvis Jenkins (head) leave the

game.

Before being hurt in his 151st straight start, Manning combined

with Jernigan on a 30-yard catch and run that set up the touchdown

pass two plays later for a 7-3 lead.

Jernigan got his other touchdown on the final play of the third

quarter on an end around after taking a handoff from Curtis

Painter, who played the second half.

Josh Brown had field goals of 34 yards in the second quarter and

38 in the fourth.

The way the Giants’ defense was playing, that’s all New York

needed.

Washington got field goals of 31 and 49 yards from Kai Forbath,

both after Giants’ turnovers.

The Redskins finished with 251 total yards after converting on 5

of 20 third-down attempts. Kirk Cousins, who started third straight

game since RGIII was shut down, was 19 of 49 for 169 yards with two

interceptions.

The game might have been the last for Redskins linebacker London

Fletcher, who said he is 99 percent sure his 16-year career will

end this season. He played in all 256 games in his career, starting

the last 215, an NFL record for linebackers.

”It’s bittersweet,”Fletcher said. ”To have done something for

16 years, I love this game of football, but it’s time for me to

enjoy other things in life. I’m going to miss this game, miss

Sundays.”

NOTES: Brown had made a club-record 17 FGs before missing from

50 yards in the second quarter. … Redskins LB Brian Orakpo was

inactive with a groin injury. … Redskins WR Pierre Garcon had six

catches for 56 yards, giving him 113 for the season for 1,346

yards. …There were 17 punts in the game, nine by Sav Rocca and

eight by Steve Weatherford. …Giants DE Justin Tuck had six

tackles, two sacks and a forced fumble in what might be his last

game with New York. He’s a free agent.

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org