Hakeem Nicks, Ramses Barden, Kenny Phillips, Rocky Bernard and Jayron Hosley will all be out for Sunday’s game. It appears that Domenik Hixon will get a start at receiver and Rueben Randle and Jerel Jernigan are going to need to step up as will Martellus Bennett.
On defense, Bernard’s absence will cause a shuffle along the defensive line. Justin Tuck and Jason Pierre-Paul may have to play more inside and young players in Marvin Austin and rookie Markus Kuhn will need to step up as well. Phillips’ absence may mean that Tyler Sash, coming off his suspension,will get a lot of playing time along with Steve Brown and Will Hill, who each stepped up last week and played well.
There could be more players ruled out. David Diehl’s knee is still bothering him as is Keith Rivers’ hamstring. They are both listed as doubtful. Michael Boley, Antrel Rolle, Corey Webster and Chris Snee are all questionable with various injuries. Any or all of those players missing the game would certainly have an impact on what the Giants can do.
Certainly on paper, this is a miss-match. However, the Browns have taken teams to the wire all season long and the Giants cannot afford to take them for granted. This is a classic trap game, and one the Giants can’t afford to lose.