Justin Tuck: ‘We’re going to have our hands full’ with RGIII

Sam Spiegelman

The Redskins (5-6) and the Giants (7-4), both coming off big-time wins in Week 12, are now set for Round 2 in the nation’s capital Monday night.

Washington is one of four teams vying for the sixth and final spot in the playoffs, while New York can all but lock up the division by trumping their divisional rival.

Of course, what’s standing in the way of a Giants victory is RGIII, who is coming off of a four-touchdown performance against Dallas on Thanksgiving. The jaw-dropping rookie has played like a veteran, and for Giants defensive end Justin Tuck, his maturity his driving his outstanding play.

“He just seems to always be in the moment and never rattled and never too high with the highs,” Tuck said during his Monday press conference. “It just seems like he’s always focused on the play at hand. I haven’t seen him kind of flustered or anything like that. You always see him kind of poised and ready for the moment and that says a lot about his maturity to be thrust upon this league and have all the weight of a franchise on you.”

Tuck, who admitted he watched RGIII pick apart the Cowboys on Thanksgiving, said he was not surprised with the rookie’s performance.

The Giants have already seen what RGIII can do. On October 21, New York topped RGIII and the ‘Skins, 27-23, thanks to a 77-yard touchdown from Eli Manning to Victor Cruz with 1:13 remaining.

Big Blue sacked Aaron Rodgers five times Sunday night. In order to win their second game in a row, the Giants will have to replicate that sort of performance.

“Just making sure we do the same thing we did last week, just being consistent and bringing the energy and the passion to the field during practice, walk-throughs, whatever it may be,” Tuck said. “Winning, just like losing, is kind of contagious.”

With Monday the second and likely the final match-up between the Giants and ‘Skins this season, perhaps we’re getting a glimpse of the NFC East’s featured rivalry over the next few years.

There is a cloud hovering over Philadelphia, where Andy Reid’s future is anything but certain. In Dallas, there is no telling what Jerry Jones might do if the Cowboys again miss the post-season.

For Tuck, New York-Washington and facing RGIII twice a year, will always be something he doesn’t look forward to.

“Until I exit stage right,” he said, “it seems like he’s going to be a fixture in my dreams and nightmares.”

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