EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. –
The Giants quickly filled their need for a defensive tackle today when they signed Montori Hughes off their practice squad.
The move was necessary because Johnathan Hankins, who had started 25 consecutive games and was one of the team's most productive defenders, was placed on injured reserve. Hankins tore his pectoral muscle while making a tackle and forcing a fumble at Tampa Bay on Sunday, and will soon undergo surgery.
Hughes, 6-4 and 350 pounds, played in 16 games for the Indianapolis Colts in 2013-14. A fifth-round draft choice by the Colts from Tennessee-Martin in 2013, he played in four games as a rookie and in 12 games with one start (at nose tackle vs. Baltimore on Oct. 5.) last season. Hughes was credited with seven tackles (four solo) and a fumble recovery as a rookie, and 12 tackles (eight solo) and a pass defensed last season.
Hughes also had four tackles (three solo) in three postseason games for the Colts last year.
He was waived by the Colts on Sept. 3 and signed to the Giants' practice squad four days later.
*The Giants also filled the vacancies on their practice squad by signing defensive tackle Louis Nix and linebacker Nico Johnson.
Nix was waived on Saturday, when the Giants signed cornerback Tramain Jacobs to the active roster.
Nix was awarded to the Giants off waivers from the Houston Texans on Sept. 6. He was waived/failed physical two days later but re-signed on Sept. 9. Nix played in four games as a reserve defensive tackle and on special teams, but did not have a tackle. He was inactive for each of the last three games before he was waived.
Johnson, 6-2 and 255 pounds, has played in 18 regular-season games with three starts for Kansas City and Cincinnati. His career totals include 18 tackles (12 solo).
He entered the NFL as the Chiefs' fourth-round draft choice, No.99 overall, in 2013 from Alabama. That season, he played in seven games with one start, and had seven tackles (five solo).
Johnson was waived by Kansas City on Aug. 30, 2014, and signed two days later to the Chiefs' practice squad. On Oct. 15, 2014, he was signed to the Cincinnati Bengals' active roster. Johnson played in 11 games with two starts and had 11 tackles (seven solo). Johnson was waived by the Bengals on Aug. 31 this year and signed to the Washington Redskins' practice squad on Sept. 25. He was released on Oct. 20.
Gameday photo timeline from the Giants Week 9 matchup against the Bucs
5 THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW: DT MONTORI HUGHES
By Dan Salomone
- Originally a fifth-round draft pick (139th overall) by the Colts in 2013, Montori Hughes had been on the Giants' practice squad since the start of the 2015 season. The promotion comes on the heels of a season-ending injury to Johnathan Hankins, who started all 16 games last season and nine this year before tearing a pectoral muscle in the win against Tampa Bay.
- The 6-foot-4, 350-pound Hughes has played in 16 regular-season games, four as a rookie with the Colts and 12 last season. His career numbers include 17 tackles (one for loss) in addition to a fumble recovery, which he notched in his first and only start in Week 5 last season against Baltimore. Indianapolis waived Hughes on Sept. 5, 2015.
- Hughes has three postseason games on his resume, recording four tackles and a fumble recovery in the Colts' 2014 run to the AFC Championship Game, where they lost to the eventual Super Bowl XLIX champion Patriots.
- To acquire Hughes, Indianapolis traded up with the Cleveland Browns in the 2013 NFL Draft. The Colts spent a fourth-round selection in the 2014 NFL Draft in exchange for the fifth-round pick that they used on Hughes.
- A native of Murfreesboro, Tenn., Hughes played his final two collegiate seasons at Tennessee-Martin, where he posted 72 tackles (29 solo), 5.0 sacks, 15.0 stops for loss, and 16 pressures. He spent the previous two years playing at the University of Tennessee. Before that, Hughes was a three-year starter at Siegel High School. He also played in 2008 at Hargrave (Va.) Military Academy.