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Backup QB Taylor Heinicke Leads Washington Football Team to Thrilling Win Over Giants

Sports Illustrated logo Sports Illustrated 9/17/2021 Wilton Jackson
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Heinicke, who threw a touchdown and interception within the final five minutes of the game, redeemed himself, setting up WFT for a game-winning field goal.

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It was a night of second chances in a classic NFC East showdown between the Giants and Washington Football Team—which featured three lead changes in the fourth quarter alone.

Washington led the Giants 27-26 after Taylor Heinicke completed two huge passes within the final five minutes of the game, including a 19-yard touchdown pass to Ricky Seals-Jones—his first catch with WFT.

After Washington's defense forced the Giants to punt on the next drive, Heinicke threw his first and only interception of the game. The Giants took advantage of the turnover and added a 35-yard field goal by Graham Gano, taking a 29-27 lead.

In Heinicke's chance at redemption, led Washington's offense down the field to the Giants' 30, setting up Dustin Hopkins for a game-winning field goal. However, on Hopkins's first field goal attempt, which he pushed wide right. Giants' Dexter Lawrence jumped offsides, setting Hopkins up for another opportunity.


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On his next attempt, Hopkins nailed the 43-yard game-winning field goal to give Washington the 30-29 victory. 

Washington (1-1) earned its first win of the season and first victory in division play for the 2021 season. The Giants (0-2) entered the game winners of the past five matchups between the two teams.

Heinicke finished 34-of-46 and threw for 336 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. With the win, Heinicke recorded his third game in a row with a touchdown pass.

The backup assumed starting quarterback duties after Ryan Fitzpatrick suffered a hip injury in the season opener against the Chargers. Fitzpatrick was placed on injured reserve on Monday. 

Giants' Daniel Jones lost his sixth primetime start in the NFL. No quarterback since 1950 has started their career with seven straight losses in primetime play, according to ESPN Stats and Info.

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