EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Rinse and repeat.
That was pretty much the news cycle regarding Daniel Jones today when coach Joe Judge again declined to speculate whether the Giants' quarterback will play Sunday in Miami.
For the second straight day, Jones was limited in practice because of the neck injury he suffered in the victory against Philadelphia.
"Yesterday, he was on the practice field," Judge said in a pre-practice meeting with reporters. "We'll see him out here again today. We'll see how he's moving around today with the trainers in large part. Hopefully, his health keeps on improving throughout the course of the season, but obviously in the short term as well."
Judge soon began a series of largely repetitive answers.
Q: What's different from the hamstring and the neck is adding that contact element on to it, does that add an element to the whole timeline?
Judge: "That's really a question for the doctors. I rely on the information that I get from the medical team, so once they go on the field, they can stay on the field healthy."
Q: Is there anything you need to see more out here or is it just a matter of waiting to clear him for contact?
Judge: "This is the doctors."
Q: At what point do you feel like you would need to announce the starter? Obviously, he (Jones) is your starter, but do you anticipate a point when the doctors come back that makes you change course?
Judge: "I'm going to have to get the information from the doctors. That's really the end of it."
Q: You talked about last week with the play calling that there's a competitive edge by not announcing someone as the play-caller. Is there any of that with this? Is it totally injury-related, or are you not telling to kind of have this uncertainty?
Judge: "I'm just waiting on the medical opinions."
Q: So as of right now, it sounds like the doctors have not cleared him to play, and you're just waiting for him to clear?
Judge: "This is really no different than a lot of injuries we deal with every week. As I said yesterday, guys go through the early week evaluation, and they go through treatment and checkups throughout the week. Then, obviously, at the end of the week, we have to make a final say. Some guys go up to game time. Other guys, we can get a final say on Friday or Saturday morning."
View rare photos of the all-time series between the New York Giants and Miami Dolphins
If Judge knows whether Jones will or won't play but is engaged in subterfuge, it's understandable. Jones is the Giants' second-leading rusher with 298 yards on 62 carries. Mike Glennon, the veteran who would replace him, has 51 carries for 109 yards – in his nine-year career. By not announcing who will play, Judge forces the Dolphins to prepare for a quarterback who runs and one who doesn't.
Senior offensive assistant Freddie Kitchens took over as the play-caller last week after the dismissal of coordinator Jason Garrett. He was asked how a game plan for Jones would differ if Glennon plays.
"I think as a coach and as a staff, we always try to put our players in the best situation to be successful," Kitchens said. "They have different skillsets, but that's neither to say one's bad or one's good from the standpoint of what you're going to call. It's just our plan is going to be our plan and we're fully expecting to have everybody."
Running back Saquon Barkley was asked how much it would hurt the team if Jones is sidelined on Sunday.
"Daniel's an amazing guy," Barkley said. "He's a hard worker, he's a leader. Obviously, when he's not on the field, you're missing something. He's special. He's a heck of a player, but at the same time, we have to have the next-man-up mentality. Whatever happens, however it plays out when we get to Sunday, we've all got to be ready to go out there and try to get a win. But like I said, he's a leader, he's a captain and he's a heck of a player. Not having (No.) 8 out there is obviously going to be something that's a little bit different because of how special a player he is and how much he means to our team."
Judge conceded even if Jones doesn't fully participate in a practice, he would go as close to game time as possible before deciding if the third-year pro will play.
"I would have no problem doing that with Daniel," Judge said. "I think it's always more on a player-by-player basis. For example, we went up to game time several times with (wide receiver) Kenny (Golladay). We went up to game time with (tight end) Kyle (Rudolph). We went up to game time with (wide receiver Sterling) Shepard. There are some different times with different injuries involved where, to me, it's a lot more about the experience that guy has and can you depend on this guy on short preparation to carry out their job.
"Ultimately, I don't really want to play anybody that hasn't practiced, but that's more about the timing and the operation with the team. If it's a rookie or a young player, it's tough to put them out there without the reps on the field. You get a guy who has been in the league for a certain amount of years, especially who has chemistry with the players, it's different. For Daniel, obviously, quarterbacks always need timing, and they need the reps. But again, with the way he prepares and the fact that he's out here and doing something, that's different. In general terms, would I ever go up to game time with Daniel specifically? I would."
*In addition to Jones, wide receiver Sterling Shepard (quad) and tight end Kyle Rudolph (ankle) were limited. Neither of them participated in the team's two walk-throughs yesterday.
Six players did not practice: wide receiver Kadarius Toney (oblique/quad), cornerback Adoree' Jackson (quad), linebacker Trent Harris (ankle), fullback Cullen Gillaspia (calf), wide receiver John Ross (illness/quad) and tight end Kaden Smith (knee).