Washington vs. Giants Prediction, Pick: Taylor Heinicke playing for the starting job? Who wins in Week 18?

Two familiar foes with the playoffs out of reach meet for a divisional clash -- we make a pick/prediction for Washington vs. Giants.

Both the Washington Football Team and the New York Giants will miss the playoffs in 2021, but who wins the Week 18 rivalry matchup? Let’s take a look at the game, the NFL odds, and make a pick and prediction.

Washington Football Team vs. New York Giants pick, prediction | Week 18

  • Spread: Washington -6.5 (Odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook)
  • Moneyline: Washington -280, Giants +225
  • Over/Under: 38.5

Underwhelming season for Washington

The Washington Football Team came into this season with the second-best defense in football.

I am still not sure what happened to that defense in the offseason, but they took a huge step backward. Even before losing Chase Young for the remainder of the year, things just didn’t look as good.

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I believe a portion of the problem is not putting together long, sustainable drives offensively. You can’t continue to ask too much of your defense. Eventually, given enough chances, the opposition will find the holes.

Ryan Fitzpatrick was knocked out of the game — and the season — in Week 1. Of course, that disrupted the plan, but Washington needs to figure out the quarterback position quickly while that young defense is affordable as a unit and intact. Is Taylor Heinicke the answer?

Giants preparing for offseason overhaul?

Something needs to change on the Giants’ side. The future of Daniel Jones is up in the air, and the Jake Fromm experiment hasn’t exactly given the franchise much to hang their hopes on so far.

The Giants have been perhaps the most underwhelming team in the NFL this year. Although they’ve been plagued by injuries, the excuses for Jones and the franchise not scoring enough points are wearing thin.

Saquon Barkley has struggled to get back to his best self following an ACL tear. Without him, the Giants just don’t have a go-to guy they can depend on in crucial situations.

Week 18 brings one final chance to see what they’ve got on the roster that’s worth holding on to. Who is going to bring a spark to this team? Who will lead the new beginning? The Giants have two high first-round draft picks, and they need to totally revitalize their roster to make drastic improvements for the 2022 season.

Washington vs. Giants betting trends

In Week 17, Washington covered the spread for the first time in four weeks, despite losing their fourth game in a row. The cold streak came at the worst possible time for Rivera and his roster. At one point, they had a solid shot at the playoffs.

Washington finished the season with four division games. They were the underdog in all four, lost all four outright, covered the spread in one, failed to do so in another two, and pushed the fourth.

As for the Giants, Sunday’s heavy defeat to the Chicago Bears marks the fifth game in a row that they’ve lost against the spread (ATS) and outright. New York has failed to keep themselves close despite spreads as large as 11.5 against the Cowboys.

They’ve also scored fewer than 10 points in four of those five games, resulting in three unders. The Giants are 6-10 ATS for the season and 5-10-1 on over/unders.

Washington vs. Giants prediction

I think this spread is generous for the Giants. Washington is the better team. The four-game losing streak is a contributor to the spread, as well as the first matchup of the season, which finished 30-29 in favor of Washington.

I’ll take Washington with the -6.5 in what will be a low-scoring game, and I’d be betting the under in this one, too.

Washington vs. Giants Score Prediction: Washington 17, Giants 7

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