For Kenny Phillips the New York Giants’ bye week came at the right time. The Giants’ starting strong safety looks like he will be making a return to the Giants’ lineup when they take on the Green Bay Packers in Week 12.
Phillips has been out since September 30th, when he left the game against the Philadelphia Eagles after suffering an MCL sprain. The Giants defense has missed Phillips despite getting excellent play from replacement Stevie Brown who has come up with several key turnovers in Phillips’ place.
Without Phillips, however, the Giants haven’t been able to play the defensive schemes that they like to employ against teams on passing downs when three safeties are on the field with one usually matching up against the opposing tight end.
“We miss him in more ways than one. Not only in the post or in the half, but his athletic talent to cover a guy like Jason Witten or [Jermaine] Gresham,” Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell said. “It’s a big loss when you have a talented player like that.”
Phillips tried to come back earlier, practicing in the week leading up to the game against the Pittsburgh Steelers but obviously didn’t play because Tom Coughlin and the other coaches didn’t think he was ready. He was also held out against the game against the Cincinnati Bengals in an effort to ensure when he did come back he would be 100 percent.
Phillips is still listed as questionable which isn’t likely to change until later in the week once Phillips proves he is healthy enough in practice this week.