7 takeaways from Giants Media Hour (10/6)

Posted Oct 6, 2014

Here are seven things we learned as the Giants met with the media a day after their win vs. the Falcons

1. RB Rashad Jennings has an MCL sprain but does not need surgery.
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Jennings, who is currently fourth in the NFL with 396 rushing yards, had to leave Sunday’s 30-20 victory over the Atlanta Falcons in the third quarter because of a sprained knee. Today both he and coach Tom Coughlin confirmed he suffered an MCL sprain. Coughlin said that he will treat the situation on a day-to-day basis until told otherwise. Meanwhile, Jennings added that he will not need surgery. “I just looked at [the physician] and said, ‘Look, surgery or no surgery?’” Jennings said. “’No surgery? See you later.’”


2. The team has all the confidence in rookie RB Andre Williams.
Williams, a fourth-round draft pick, took over Jennings’ workload yesterday and gained key yards down the stretch, including a three-yard touchdown run that was the first of 20 unanswered points for the Giants in their comeback win. His play has given Jennings -- and others -- “all the confidence” in the world if he’s asked to step up again. “Like I told you before, this running back room, the depth is as large as I’ve ever been a part of; each guy is a starter,” Jennings said. “Like I said, he is a guy that, when he first came here, kind of just was sitting under my wing, learning as much as he possibly could from [running back] Peyton [Hillis] as well. We’ve got the utmost confidence in Andre, Peyton as well.”

3. CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie has a leg injury.
On Monday, Coughlin said the veteran cornerback does have a leg injury but that Rodgers-Cromartie thinks he can play through it. Staying on the injury front, linebacker Spencer Paysinger went for tests on a hamstring that forced him to leave the game yesterday, while rookie linebacker Devon Kennard, who made his return on Sunday after missing the previous three games with his own hamstring injury, “seemed to be fine,” according to Coughlin.


4. S Antrel Rolle thinks the NFC East is stronger this year.  
Winning their third straight game yesterday, the Giants kept pace with the Eagles and Cowboys, who both won in Week 5 to improve to 4-1. Now the division race will heat up as the Giants face the two division leaders in back-to-back weeks on the road before the bye in Week 8. Philadelphia, the home of the reigning division champion, is the first stop. “We’re just trying to make sure that we come out on top of our division this year,” Rolle said. “Last year is last year. I don’t feel like there was much to really battle with last year in our division. I felt like it was a weak division last year. I feel like this year it’s definitely up and rising. We didn’t get a lot of credit in the preseason in our division, but I think now the tables are starting to turn a little bit. Dallas is playing good, Philly is playing good right now. I think we’re rising and we’re stepping up to the challenges and we’re playing some good football right now.”

5. WR Odell Beckham Jr. will be pushed along even further now.  
After missing time with a hamstring issue, the first-round draft choice made his NFL debut yesterday, recording four catches for 44 yards, including a 15-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter that put the Giants ahead for good. As far as determining his workload moving forward, Coughlin said, “We will continue to observe and get the advice from the medical people. He seemed to be very fine today. There wasn’t any issue. We will push him along even further now.”


6. Coughlin again tipped his hat to Atlanta’s scheme.
While the rookies shined on Sunday, the two playmakers that dominated the first two games of the winning streak -- wide receiver Victor Cruz and tight end Larry Donnell -- were relatively quiet in Week 5. Cruz had just three catches for 22 yards, while Donnell was completely shut out. Coughlin, like he did in his postgame interview, gave credit where credit was due. “I think credit has to be given to Atlanta for their coverage schemes, the way in which they continued to disguise and work,” Coughlin said. “I think there was definitely some coverages set up for Victor Cruz and that was recognizable. As far as Larry Donnell goes, I don’t think there was any special coverage, I know there would be special recognition within a formation for someone that has had a game like that from the week before.”

7. Quintin Demps and Preston Parker will continue to rotate on kickoff return.
To start the season, Demps was the primary kick returner, while Parker handled punts. But since Demps was bumped up to a starting role at safety, the two have been rotating on kickoff, including yesterday’s game. And it looks like it will continue that way to keep both players fresh. On the issue, Coughlin said, “We have rotated those people and if there is any kind of circumstance where he has been in for any number of plays, then we play the other guy.”