There were a decent number of Giants fans at Fedax Field on Monday night. From my vantage point, it was nothing absurd, certainly not when you consider that the Giants are still f!ghting for a playoff berth, and the Redskins are, you know, not. And with New York dominating at halftime, and throughout the third quarter, and throughout the fourth quarter, the percentage of Giants fans steadily grew.
So when a playoff team ends up beating a non-playoff team by 33 points, in a stadium that seats 90,000, right before Christmas, two days after a snowstorm, on a chilly night, you would absolutely expect the visitors to have a dominant presence in the stands by the game's end.
That said, the "Let's Go Giants!" chants were loud. Really loud. Loud enough that the Giants' defenders on the field were gesturing with their hands in the air, asking the crowd to provide more noise. That's just weird.
"We took the stadium over," Brandon Jacobs said. "You know, that's what we do every year here. We come to D.C., half of the stadium is Giants fans. And by the end of the fourth quarter, all the Washington fans is gone and it ends up just like it is....It feels great. It feels great to go into any stadium and take it over. But it's a two-hour train ride, and people made the trip, and we was excited to see a lot of fans here."
Others were slightly less effusive, but the general point was similar.
"It was crazy," Osi Umenyiora said. "It was a Giants crowd, man. It was a pro-Giants crowd. It was crazy."
I asked when he realized how many Giants fans were here.
"I would say from the beginning," Umenyiora said. "I mean, it was a bunch of Giants fans here, so I'm happy about that. It probably won't be like that every time we come down here, but in this instance it was, and we're happy for it."
Other players said they didn't notice the Giants' presence until later in the game.
"Towards the end of the game, when they were chanting Let's Go Giants, you can't beat that," Kevin Boss said. "That's pretty special, to be able to hear that."
"It was awesome to see," tackle David Diehl said. "One of the things we talked about all week is starting fast and getting momentum on our side and trying to get the crowd out of it. I didn't think at the end it'd be that loud--Let's Go Giants. It's an exciting time for us."
Even defensive tackle Barry Cofield brought up the crowd, out of the blue, when discussing the win.
"We had a lot of fans out there, too," Cofield said. "It really wasn't a bad home-field advantage. We had a lot of fans, and I felt like we fed off of them. We were playing for a lot more than [the Redskins] were, so if we couldn't win this game, we don't deserve to be in the postseason."
Someone asked him later whether he expected so many Giants fans.
"I was kind of surprised," Cofield said. "Maybe it was the weather, I don't know. Like I said, this was a must-win game for us, and just another game for them. They're out of contention. But it was great to see so many blue shirts, and hear the crowd on our side."