EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- The New York Giants' coaches have one defensive game plan for Monday Night if cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie can play and another in case he can't. But based on the way Rodgers-Cromartie has practiced this week, they are optimistic he'll be able to help them against the Colts.
"We're working him, and it depends on how he feels," defensive coordinator Perry Fewell said Friday. "He's been good in back-to-back practices now, and that's something he didn't do before our last game. So we'll see how he feels (Saturday) and if it stiffens up, but it's that day-to-day assessment with him right now."
Rodgers-Cromartie has been dealing with leg and back problems for more than a month, and wasn't able to play in much of the team's Week 7 loss in Dallas. He's been getting treatment through the bye week, but his health issues obviously haven't cleared all the way up, and head coach Tom Coughlin said "I don't believe we can do that at this point" when asked about counting on Rodgers-Cromartie being able to play the whole game.
Colts quarterback Andrew Luck leads the league in passing yardage, so he obviously poses a serious challenge to a Giants secondary that is already without nickel cornerbacks Walter Thurmond and Trumaine McBride. A limited Rodgers-Cromartie is a potentially big problem in a game like this.
On the offensive side of the ball, Coughlin called guard Geoff Schwartz "a long shot" to return from injured reserve this week. Schwartz just started practicing this week on the toe injury that's kept him out since training camp, and they still have 17 more days before they are required to activate him.
And running back Rashad Jennings, who has already been ruled out of a third straight game with his knee injury, said he's still a few days from trying to move laterally on his leg, and that Week 11's game against the 49ers is a more realistic goal than the Week 10 game in Seattle, though he wouldn't rule that out.