The New York Giants placed an astounding five more players on injured reserve Tuesday, including guard Geoff Schwartz and longtime defensive end Mathias Kiwanuka, who's out for the year with a knee injury and could now be finished as a Giant after nine seasons and two Super Bowl titles.
Kiwanuka missed Sunday's game with a knee injury that has been bothering him all season.
Kiwanuka has played in 126 games and started 85 (including postseason) for the Giants since they selected him No. 32 overall in the 2006 NFL draft out of Boston College. Even before his season-ending injury, he was a strong candidate to be released this offseason for salary cap reasons. He'll be 32 next year and is scheduled to count $7.45 million against the 2015 salary cap. They can save $4.825 million against next year's cap by cutting him.
Schwartz ranks among the biggest disappointments of this disappointing Giants season. Signed in the offseason to a four-year, $16.8 million contract to help fix their offensive line problems, Schwartz missed the first 10 games of the season with a toe injury. He returned and started at right tackle in Week 12 against the Dallas Cowboys and Week 13 in Jacksonville, but he sprained his ankle early in the Jacksonville game and did not return. He likely factors into their plans for next year's offensive line, but only $1 million of his scheduled $3.675 million salary for 2015 is guaranteed.
To replace the most recent IR additions, the Giants signed linebacker James Davidson, guard Eric Herman and defensive tackle Dominique Hamilton from their practice squad to their 53-man roster. They also signed former Cleveland Browns and Carolina Panthers running back Chris Ogbonnaya to their 53-man roster.
The other three players the Giants put on injured reserve Tuesday were defensive end Robert Ayers (torn pectoral muscle), guard Adam Snyder (knee) and linebacker Terrell Manning (ankle). Ayers started in Kiwanuka's place Sunday in Jacksonville and was tied for the team lead with five sacks so far this season. Snyder started at left guard in the Week 12 loss to Dallas but injured the knee in that game and could not finish it.
Because Manning was signed last week from the Cincinnati Bengals' practice squad, the Giants are not allowed to replace him on the roster. NFL rules state that a player cannot be replaced on the 53-man roster for three weeks after signing from a practice squad, even if he goes on injured reserve. So for the next three weeks, the Giants will only be able to have 52 players on their 53-man roster.
The Giants have placed a total of 20 players on injured reserve since training camp.