In Tom Coughlin's mind, the must-wins start now.
After losing to the Redskins, the Giants (7-5) are a game ahead of the Redskins and Cowboys in the division, with very few advantages in tiebreaker scenarios. Coughlin did not seem to be spewing hyperbolic coach-speak when he addressed the urgency of the final four games.
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"We have to win literally every one of our games," he said last night. "That's how I look at it."
While that may not be mathematically accurate, it's the mind-set he wants his players to have. They faced "win or else'' pressure late in the season the last two years. In 2010 they lost to the Eagles and Packers and missed the playoffs. Last year they beat the Jets and Cowboys and then won the Super Bowl.
Will the team respond to this year's situation?
"I certainly think we will and I hope we will," Coughlin said. "I don't know why we wouldn't."
Locklear out for season
Sean Locklear suffered what Coughlin called "a serious injury" to his right knee Monday. He will require surgery and will be placed on injured reserve this week.
"We feel badly for Sean," Coughlin said. "He's done a heck of a job."
Nine penalties were enforced Monday against the Giants. "The penalties eat away at your gut," Coughlin said. "How can a team with something this important be as careless as we were?'' . . . Washington is the first division rival to run for more than 200 yards against the Giants twice in a season since the 1965 Browns (then in the Eastern Conference).