Ron Rivera explains two-point gamble that gave Giants their first victory: ‘I play to win’

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When presented with the opportunity to tie the game and hope for overtime or go for the one-point lead, Washington Football head coach Ron Rivera didn’t hesitate to make his call: He was going for the win.

“I play to win,” Rivera told the media after the game.

After Cam Sims caught his first career touchdown to cut the New York Giants’ lead to 20-19 with 36 seconds to play, Rivera kept quarterback Kyle Allen and the offense on the field for the two-point attempt.

“We played to win at the end, I went for two, because I believe it’s the only way you learn to win is to play to win,” Rivera said.

Unfortunately, Washington will have to learn to win another day as Allen’s pass fell incomplete and New York held on for the narrow home win.

When asked if he had any hesitation, Rivera said, “I’m going for it. The intent is to learn how to win football games.”

“That’s the mentality,” Rivera said about his decision to go for two and his decision to go for it on 4th down twice earlier. “And if taking a little bit of a gamble is part of it, then that’s what I’m doing.”

Rivera said his mentality is when you are on the road and need two yards, go for it.

"I’m trying to get our players to understand this is how we’re going to do things. We’re going to do things to the max. We’re going to play to win football games. It’s going to bug me because we lost," Rivera said Sunday. "It’s going to piss me off. I want to win football games. I don’t care this is my first year. I don’t care we have young guys that have to learn. We’re trying to teach them. We’re going to teach them and they’re going to learn how to win. And the end of the day, that’s what we’re here for."

Part of the reason Rivera wants to win: He believes the NFC East remains wide open. Rivera added the defeat to the, then 0-5, Giants hasn’t changed how he sees the division.

“Right now, we’re 1-5, they’re 1-5, you gotta see what happens to Philadelphia (1-3-1) and Dallas (2-3),” Rivera said. “And we’ll see what happens that’s why we’re playing these games.”