EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Brian Daboll was asked so many medical questions on his virtual Monday news conference, it might have been more appropriate for him to wear a white lab coat than a black Giants sweatshirt.
But in the wake of the Giants' 20-12 victory Sunday against the Chicago Bears, injuries remain a principal storyline, particularly those to quarterbacks Daniel Jones and Tyrod Taylor. Neither is guaranteed to play Sunday when the Giants will face the Green Bay Packers in Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London.
Jones has an ankle sprain and Taylor is in the NFL concussion protocol. The former has started each game in the Giants' 3-1 start. He left yesterday's game when his left ankle got caught under rookie safety Jaquon Brisker on the Bears' only sack of the game. Jones was replaced by Taylor, who was involved in a helmet-to-helmet collision with rookie cornerback Kyler Gordon on his second series. Jones re-entered the game, first splitting wide while Saquon Barkley took snaps in a wildcat formation and then returning under center to hand the ball off.
Ideally, Jones will recover rapidly and start on Sunday. But nobody, including an NFL head coach, can accurately predict that one day after a player suffers a lower body sprain and six days prior to a game.
"I'm just going to take it each day and see how he (Jones) is," Daboll said. "If he can practice and go out there and perform the things we need him to do, great. If he needs a day, he needs a day. I think it's case-by-case with all those (injured) guys. Obviously, he's played a lot of football. I trust him and where he's at. I just think that we as a coaching staff have got to do a good job of watching him, evaluating him, getting all the information we need to get to make the best decision for him and the team as we can.
"Daniel is feeling a little bit better today. We'll just see how that goes."
View photos from the Giants' Week 4 game against the Chicago Bears at MetLife Stadium.
Taylor must follow the steps mandated in the NFL concussion protocol: 1. Rest and recovery. 2. Aerobic exercise. 3. Football-specific exercise. 4. Non-contact football activities. 5. Full football activity/clearance. The final step is clearance by an independent neurological consultant.
The only other quarterback the Giants have under contract Davis Webb, who is on the practice squad. The Giants will have to formally sign him to the active roster if they decide he is needed.
Webb has been in the NFL since he was the Giants' third-round draft choice in 2017 but has played in only one game and has never thrown a regular-season pass. But he spent three seasons on the practice squad of the Buffalo Bills when Daboll was the team's offensive coordinator, so he knows the Giants' offense.
If Jones and Taylor are both unable to play against the Packers, Webb will be the likely starter.
"I think you try to plan for every contingency plan that you may or may not have throughout the week – that will certainly be one of them," Daboll said. "Again, I don't want to guess right now on Monday where all the other guys are going to be. Davis been in our offense for quite some time. He knows the ins and outs of it, so if he has to play, we'll do everything we can, and I know he will, to be ready to play. In terms of where we're at at that point, I don't think we're at that point just yet to make a decision. We'll let this thing play out."
Signing another quarterback is an option.
"We'll probably work out a few quarterbacks," Daboll said. "Whether we sign them or not, I think that's dependent on some of these guys here."
Wide receiver is another position that requires its health to be scrutinized. Kenny Golladay, who played 27 snaps yesterday, injured his knee and Daboll said, "it doesn't look promising" regarding his availability for Sunday. The ranks have already been thinned in that group as Sterling Shepard is out for the season with a torn ACL and Kadarius Toney (hamstring) and rookie Wan'Dale Robinson (knee) have missed the last two and three games, respectively.
Daboll said "we'll see" when asked if receiver is another position where importing someone new is possible.
"We have three guys on the practice squad that we like," he said of Marcus Johnson (who played one snap yesterday), Kalil Pimpleton and Makai Polk. "Depending on those other two guys, again the three guys on the practice squad … have done a good job; we'll continue to work with those guys. So, I think we'll see more toward the end of the week.
"I think they're all making progress. Again, (it's) Monday. So, they've got a couple days here. We'll see where they're at once we get done, call it Thursday."
As for the other injuries…safety Julian Love is in the concussion protocol. Cornerback Aaron Robinson (knee) and defensive tackle Henry Mondeaux (ankle) will "probably not" be available, according to Daboll. The team's top two 2022 draft choices, edge rusher Kayvon Thibodeaux (back) and right tackle Evan Neal (neck), plus guard Mark Glowinski (ankle) "should be okay." Linebacker Jihad Ward "will be okay." Regarding linebacker Azeez Ojulari (calf), Daboll said, "we'll kind of see where he's at here on Wednesday when he gets back (after tomorrow's day off)."
*Giants wide receivers caught just three passes yesterday, one each by David Sills, Richie James and Darius Slayton.
Daboll was asked if he "catered your gameplan around" the wideouts. He reiterated his support for the players on hand.
"I'd say we catered it to playing the Bears – what we thought we needed to do," Daboll said. "I think Kadarius and Wan'Dale are making progress, so we'll see where those guys are at. And then Sills. I thought that Slay came in and gave us some good reps. And then Richie has been dependable for us. So, depending on those other two guys, again the three guys on the practice squad – we brought Marcus up. Polk and Pimpleton have done a good job; we'll continue to work with those guys. So, I think we'll see more toward the end of the week."