EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — If this was Mike Shanahan’s final game as the Washington Redskins’ coach, it was just as disappointing as the season.
It was yet another loss in a year many expected the Redskins to repeat as NFC East champs. This one was ugly, too.
Jerrel Jernigan caught a 24-yard touchdown pass and ran 49 yards for another to lead the New York Giants to a 20-6 victory over Washington on Sunday, handing the inept Redskins (3-13) their eighth straight loss.
Shanahan refused to address his future after the game. He plans to meet with team owner Daniel Snyder on Monday.
“We’ve been talking about this for a few weeks now and we’ll get a chance to talk tomorrow (with Dan) and I’ll share that conversation with you,” Shanahan said.
There are many who feel the 61-year-old coach won’t be back because of his shaky relationship with oft-injured franchise quarterback Robert Griffin III.
Offensive tackle Trent Williams hopes Shanahan returns.
“I would hate to see him get the brunt of the blame for our season when we as players just didn’t play well this whole season,” Williams said. “We had great game plans, we were coached on the right things to do and we continued to come up short. To me, I don’t think it has anything to do with the coaching staff, it’s us, us players.”
Receiver Santana Moss said the Redskins never overcame their 1-4 start.
“We caught a wave we couldn’t get off of,” Moss said. “Once we did, the wave just drowned us.”
The Giants (7-9) also aren’t going to the playoffs, but they won seven of their last 10 after losing their first six games. It’s a finish that probably will have two-time Super Bowl winning coach Tom Coughlin back next season, unless the 67-year-old decides he has had enough.
Coughlin also refused to address his future.
“I was proud of the way they stayed together as a team,” he said. “We had good leadership. Our captains did a nice job and they can’t do it alone. The attitude and the approach that this team took regardless of some of the very difficult Mondays that we had was very impressive from the standpoint of maturity and professionalism.”
The Giants also showed poise Sunday, keeping things together after losing Eli Manning at the end of the first half with a high sprain to his left ankle.
“It’s serious but you know it will heal,” said Manning, who finished 10 of 24 for 152 yards with a touchdown and his career-high 27th interception. “I have an offseason to do that. I’m not worried out there being a lasting effect.”
The game was the final one at MetLife Stadium until the Super Bowl on Feb. 2. This one was about as ugly as it gets, and the constant rain and injuries didn’t help.
Besides Manning, the Giants lost receivers Rueben Randle (knee), Hakeem Nicks (ankle) and offensive tackle Will Beatty (broken leg) in the regular-season finale. The Redskins saw cornerback Josh Wilson (calf) and defensive end Jarvis Jenkins (head) leave the game.
Before being hurt in his 151st straight start, Manning combined with Jernigan on a 30-yard catch and run that set up the touchdown pass two plays later for a 7-3 lead.
Jernigan got his other touchdown on the final play of the third quarter on an end around after taking a handoff from Curtis Painter, who played the second half.
Josh Brown had field goals of 34 yards in the second quarter and 38 in the fourth.
The way the Giants’ defense was playing, that’s all New York needed.
Washington got field goals of 31 and 49 yards from Kai Forbath, both after Giants’ turnovers.
The Redskins finished with 251 total yards after converting on 5 of 20 third-down attempts. Kirk Cousins, who started third straight game since RGIII was shut down, was 19 of 49 for 169 yards with two interceptions.
The game might have been the last for Redskins linebacker London Fletcher, who said he is 99 percent sure his 16-year career will end this season. He played in all 256 games in his career, starting the last 215, an NFL record for linebackers.
“It’s bittersweet,”Fletcher said. “To have done something for 16 years, I love this game of football, but it’s time for me to enjoy other things in life. I’m going to miss this game, miss Sundays.”
NOTES: Brown had made a club-record 17 FGs before missing from 50 yards in the second quarter. … Redskins LB Brian Orakpo was inactive with a groin injury. … Redskins WR Pierre Garcon had six catches for 56 yards, giving him 113 for the season for 1,346 yards. …There were 17 punts in the game, nine by Sav Rocca and eight by Steve Weatherford. …Giants DE Justin Tuck had six tackles, two sacks and a forced fumble in what might be his last game with New York. He’s a free agent.