New York Giants
The winless Giants hope to turn things around Thursday. However, it will be a tough task for the Giants given the injuries on their roster. A few players already ruled out for the game include center David Baas (keeping them thin on the offensive line), cornerback Corey Webster (missing his fourth consecutive game, one of many injuries in the secondary) and starting running back David Wilson, who could miss more than Thursday night’s game.
David Wilson, RB, neck (out): Wilson is reportedly dealing with a disk-related problem in his neck, a source tells the New York Daily News. That’s not surprising since we said in this space Tuesday that the “tingling” Wilson was experiencing reflected nerve involvement, which could be secondary to a disk injury.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that Wilson is expected to consult with renowned spine surgeon Dr. Robert Watkins on Monday to determine the next steps. The most obvious decision is whether Wilson will require surgery. Multiple factors go into making that choice, including the location and severity of current symptoms and whether there is significant risk involved with returning to play. Surgery would be season-ending, but if a conservative treatment course is the option, it could still be several weeks before Wilson is able to play.
This has a familiar ring to it. Last year around this time, former Giants (now Colts) running back Ahmad Bradshaw experienced tingling in his upper extremities after injuring his neck. He was found to have a bulging disk. He missed one week then returned to play. This year, Bradshaw experienced a recurrence of symptoms after Week 3 and is planning to undergo season-ending surgery. That is not to say this should be the expected course for Wilson, as there is extensive variability with these types of conditions. It is more a reflection of the overall bad luck the Giants have in terms of the health of their running backs.
It’s worth pointing out that following Thursday’s tilt, the Giants’ next game is 11 days away (hosting the Minnesota Vikings for "Monday Night Football" in Week 7) followed by a Week 8 contest against the Philadelphia Eagles and a bye in Week 9. In Week 10, Andre Brown, on IR/designated for return with a fractured left fibula, could make his first appearance since the injury. Brown has begun running this week, a positive sign that the bone healing is satisfactory. Now it’s just a matter of progressing his activity toward a return to football.
As for the immediate concern regarding who will be carrying the ball for the Giants on Thursday night, as ESPN.com’s Dan Graziano notes, the Giants re-signed Da’Rel Scott to play alongside Brandon Jacobs, but they could also use rookie Michael Cox.
Brandon Myers, TE, ankle (questionable): Myers has been physically banged up this season but has not missed any playing time. Still, he comes into Thursday night’s game with a new ailment on the injury report (ankle), and his questionable status suggests he could be a game-time call. He was listed as a nonparticipant Monday when the Giants conducted a walkthrough, but he did progress to limited practice Tuesday and Wednesday.
The Bears are on a two-game losing streak, and perhaps in light of trying to ensure it is rested on a short week, the team did not practice Monday and conducted only walkthroughs in advance of the Thursday game. Since teams are still required to file injury reports, the listing of Bears players on this week’s report represents an estimation of how much they would have done in a regular practice.
Alshon Jeffery, WR, ankle (probable): Jeffery had a huge performance in Week 5 to the tune of more than 200 yards receiving and a score. No wonder his ankle needed a little rest. Given that the Bears kept it light for everyone on this short week -- and Jeffery was listed daily as a limited participant -- the probable tag tells us he’s virtually certain to play.
Martellus Bennett, TE, knee (questionable): Bennett has been on injury reports this season primarily because of the shoulder he injured in Week 2, but he has yet to miss a game. This week, it’s a different ailment, his knee, although his shoulder is probably benefiting from the light walkthroughs on a short week as well. On Wednesday, coach Marc Trestman indicated that Bennett’s status would be decided a few hours before game time, although he said he was optimistic regarding his availability. Fantasy owners will want to check before kickoff, but it’s looking as if Bennett will take the field against his former team.