Last week it was Antrel Rolle. This week it was Kenny Phillips.
In consecutive weeks, safety Stevie Brown has been called upon to sub for his injured teammates. Against Carolina, Rolle cut and bruised his knee in the fourth quarter, and Brown took over. Against Philadelphia, Rolle started, but Kenny Phillips was the one who went down with a knee sprain in the first quarter. Phillips would not return.
"I was prepared," said Brown, who signed with the Giants in April. "I prepare like I'm playing every single game. Unfortunately K.P. went down, but I know the game keeps going. So I had to step in there and do my job." Brown did that and more last week when he had an interception in his limited time. That gave the third-year pro a chance to get acclimated to live action in the new system.
"It gave me some more game experience, which is what you always need – live bullets and everything," said Brown, who played in 23 games with one start in his first two seasons in the NFL. "I knew what the team expected. I knew what the coaches expected. So I had to go out there and perform."
In the Giants' 19-17 loss, Brown was second on the team with eight tackles. That included stopping Eagles' running back LeSean McCoy twice behind the line of scrimmage and another for no gain. He also added one quarterback hit. Meanwhile, Will Hill saw time as the nickel cornerback in Philadelphia and made his presence known. Along with three tackles and breaking up a pass, he knocked Michael Vick to the ground in the second quarter, causing the quarterback to throw an incomplete pass on third down.
"I felt great being in there, just being able to contribute to the team and just show everybody that I'm here and I'm ready to ball," said Hill, a rookie free agent. "We played a lot of man with them and tried to shut down their key weapons, slow them down and try to keep them from getting to the edge. Basically contain them and try to come out with a W, but it didn't end that way."