NEW YORK — The worst season in New York Giants history is finally over.
It ended on a good note — an 18-10 win over Washington — and the victory did not cost them their standing in the NFL draft as the Colts defeated the Texans to secure the No. 2 pick for the 3-13 Giants.
The sparse crowd at MetLife Stadium also rang out an "E-LI MANN-ING" chant in the final minutes of the game.
Newly hired GM Dave Gettleman, who along with co-owner John Mara, expressed on Friday that they plan to move forward in 2018 with Manning as the quarterback, but it has been a tumultuous season for the soon-to-be 37-year-old quarterback, whose future as a Giant became cloudy in recent weeks.
It was a rather pedestrian game for Manning, who was dealing with an opening kickoff temperature of 16 degrees and winds of 16 miles per hour, as he threw for 132 yards and a touchdown and interception.
Manning was playing behind a raw offensive line consisting of two rookie tackles and had a ragtag group of receivers whom were not even on the roster at the start of the season but still led the team to a victory.
The win concludes a season filled with injuries to star players, a head coach and GM who were fired, multiple player suspensions and teammates turning on one another in the locker room.
Defensive tackle Jay Bromley, a four-year veteran and Queens native, told the News earlier this week that he never thought the Giants would ever "stoop this low."
"Nah, in all my years of playing football from high school to now I never played with a team with a record this poor," he said. "I mean, I'm from New York. I never really seen the Giants with this kind of record, it's unfortunate but especially being a part of it with the talent we have on this team it's very unfortunate."
The Giants jumped out to a quick start on Sunday thanks to running back Orleans Darkwa, who ran for a career-high 154 yards.
Darkwa rushed for a 75-yard touchdown on the second play from scrimmage in the first quarter to give the Giants a quick 6-0 lead before another Aldrick Rosas' extra point attempt was blocked.
The Giants followed by intercepting Washington quarterback Kirk Cousins on the ensuing drive and two plays later found themselves up 12-0 when Manning found Hunter Sharp _ who was signed off the Broncos practice squad three weeks ago.
Washington crept back after linebacker Preston Smith intercepted a Manning screen pass deep in the Giants' own territory.
Two plays later, Cousins ran for a 12-yard touchdown.
After an Aldrick Rosas field goal in the second quarter, the Giants special teams allowed Washington to pull within five when Brad Wing shanked a punt to Jamison Crowder with 17 seconds remaining.
Crowder returned the punt 29 yards to the Giants' 31 yard line, which set up a 49-yard Dustin Hopkins field goal just before halftime.
The Giants added another field goal at the start of the fourth quarter as neither team could do much offensively in the second half.