5 instant takeaways from the NY Giants thrilling 14-7 win over Washington

The Giants were able to escape with a close win over Washington

Washington Commanders v New York Giants
Washington Commanders v New York Giants / Dustin Satloff/GettyImages
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4. The Giants defense stepped up massively

Take a bow, Wink Martindale. In recent weeks, Martindale had been called out for his guys not playing too well, but that wasn't the case against Washington at all. In the first half in particular, the pass-rush was on freaking fire. Dexter Lawrence was a man on a mission, as he was living in the backfield and putting constant pressure on Howell. Lawrence had two sacks in the first 30 minutes.

Kayvon Thibodeaux was also a beast, posting 1.5 sacks in the first two quarters. The heavy pressure on Howell was amazing to see and you had a feeling this would be a focus for the Giants after what they were able to get done on defense against the Bills last weekend. Oh, let's also not forget about the strong play of Deonte Banks, who had a moment in the first half he'll never forget:

Everything about that play was perfect from the No. 24 overall pick. Banks baited Howell into making a terrible throw and the rookie showcased some fantastic athleticism to come down with the ball. This is the kind of play you'd expect a first-round pick to make. Banks is getting better with each game - the kid is a true baller.