Call it 'The Linebacker Shuffle'.
While Perry Fewell is hopeful that linebacker Michael Boley will be able to return on Sunday against Green Bay, the Giants defensive coordinator said that recently demoted linebacker Greg Jones will get more playing time this week.
This, of course, follows the news that fellow rookie Mark Herzlich is likely out Sunday with an ankle injury. Herzlich had started the last two games.
"It's next man up for us, that's the way it's been all year for us, next man up, we'll just have to keep practicing on Friday and practice on Saturday and see what Michael can give us and Greg Jones will obviously play more and we'll go at it that way," Fewell said.
Jones had started four of the team's first seven games before being demoted heading into New England. When Boley went out against San Francisco on Nov. 13, it led to Herzlich being put in the starting role against Philadelphia the following week.
Undrafted rookie Spencer Paysinger has seen an increase in his playing time with Boley's injury while sixth-round draft pick Jacquian Williams has been a steady presence in the unit. Williams started one game this season at middle linebacker.
Boley's return would be a huge boost to the linebackers, if he is able to do so, but either way Jones is going be thrust back into the mix. The sixth-round pick filled in for Herzlich after his injury Monday and Fewell seemed upbeat about Jones getting another chance to prove himself after up-and-down results so far.
"Although he didn’t get all the reps (on Monday), he tackled well for us and Greg has to get better in pass coverage and do some things in pass coverage to help make him a more complete football player but his head is in practices and he's been into it even though he lost his job," Fewell said. "He knows that hey, at any moment as professional, you can get called up for service. He'll be fine."