Josh Brown ready to punt if necessary

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Josh Brown hasn't punted in an NFL game since 2004, but the New York Giants' placekicker was practicing it Wednesday just in case he needs to do it Sunday.

Giants punter Steve Weatherford sprained his ankle in Monday's game. An MRI taken Tuesday showed torn ligaments, but Weatherford was told he didn't need surgery. He spent Giants practice in the weight room (shocker, right?) and said he was still hopeful he could return soon -- possibly as early as Sunday.

"The diagnosis wasn't great, but it could have been a lot worse," Weatherford said. "It could have been a knee. It could have been season-ending. I would like to see a lot more progress between now and Sunday, but I have confidence that our training staff can get me where I need to be."

Weatherford was able to stay in the game and continue punting, but he said the key to determining whether he can play Sunday will not be whether he can "just get the ball off," but rather confidence that he can punt to his standards. However, assuming they don't want to put him on season-ending injured reserve, the Giants aren't likely to use a second roster spot on a punter they bring in off the street. So if Weatherford has to miss a week, Brown is the likely replacement option.

"It's not part of my normal serious drills, but it's not something that's going to be overwhelming," Brown said. "I have no issues catching the snap and getting it off in time."

Weatherford is also the holder on field goals -- a chore he could certainly handle with a sprained ankle but which would fall to backup quarterback Ryan Nassib if Weatherford were inactive Sunday. Brown said Nassib didn't hold in college and has been getting a crash course in it the past few weeks. "He's doing real well," Brown said.