Andrews will play through pain on Sunday

Sometime on Sunday morning, Shawn Andrews will take a shot of the painkiller Toradol to ease the pain in his back before he hits the field for the Giants' must-win game against the Redskins.

Let’s hope the medical staff times this one correctly.

"I think two weeks ago I got the shot right before we went out for the kickoff (against Philadelphia on Dec. 19) and it didn't kick in until I got home," Andrews said with a chuckle on Friday.

"I'm serious, man. I'm sitting there on the couch and feeling good," he added. "Now I get it as soon as I go over there, right when I get there so it can kick in and resonate throughout my body."

Andrews, who has taken three epidural shots and more shots of Toradol than he can keep track of to play this field this season, is expected to start at left tackle against Washington.

Andrews has had two back surgeries in his seven-year NFL career and missed two games due to back pain this year. He was hospitalized with a back issue for two days prior to the Jacksonville game. He last started Week 10 against Philadelphia.

“I don’t know what’s going to happen but I’m going to put my all into it as I always have,” Andrews said. “But I expect to finish the game and finish the game strong.”

All the pain and pain-killers have Andrews questioning how much longer he can play.

"My passion says 'Yes,'" Andrews said on Friday. "My body? Me and my body, we're talking it out right now. We're seeing where we are."

Andrews was later asked if that meant he was considering retirement.

"That hasn't crossed my mind," he said, adding that he has a new-found respect and passion for the game.

"Just making it back and getting picked up by the Giants I beat the odds," he added.

But he may not be with the Giants for long. The team has to decide whether it makes sense to keep Andrews around given his back issues this season.

Andrews is scheduled to collect a $3.5 million bonus on the 30th day of the league year in 2011. He can earn $500,000 in workout bonus money and has a base salary of $3 million for a total compensation of $7 million.

MISSING MATHIAS:The Giants' defense has allowed 73 points in the last 68 minutes. Coordinator Perry Fewell admitted this week that there are times that he thinks about the difference injured DE Mathias Kiwanuka could have made if he was healthy.

"“I think about that all the time. Tom (Coughlin) tells me don’t cry over spilled milk,” Fewell said. “You never know the impact of a player, but I think about him like, ‘Boy if we had him, we could do this, we could do this, we would be like this, we would be like that, we could change our complexion a little bit more,’ but we’ll never know, but we do miss him. There’s no doubt about that.”

Kiwanuka suffered a bulging cervical disk in his neck after Week 3 against Tennessee and was placed on injured reserved prior to the Nov. 7 game against Seattle. Before he went down, Kiwanuka recorded a team-high four sacks, one forced fumble and 16 tackles. The 27-year-old will be a free agent in the offseason.