EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – One day after enduring their most unpleasant afternoon of the season, the Giants have neither the time nor the inclination to host a pity party.
Their Sunday included the trifecta of a 31-18 loss to the Detroit Lions, injuries to six players, including a season-ending torn ACL suffered by rookie wide receiver Wan'Dale Robinson – who was placed on injured reserve - and victories by their three competitors in the NFC East, including a 37-point road victory by their next opponent.
"You come in after a loss, you don't feel great," coach Brian Daboll said Monday. "You feel very disappointed. You put a lot of work into it during the week, and you don't get the results you want. You should be disappointed, but you can't let it linger. In this particular case, it's such a quick turnaround. You've got to move on quickly. That's something that we've stressed really since we've gotten here: Take it day-by-day. Learn from the things you can learn from. You're going to hit bumps in the road. Whether that's a practice or a game, a play, a call, a decision, those things are going to happen. And you move on from them."
The Giants have no time to dwell on what happened yesterday because they play again in just three days. Late Thanksgiving afternoon, they will be in AT&T Stadium to face the Dallas Cowboys, who put a 40-3 beating on a Minnesota Vikings team that entered the game 8-1.
So, now it will be next man – or men – up for the 7-3 Giants, who are tied with Dallas for second place in the division, two games behind Philadelphia. The Cowboys won the first meeting on Sept. 26 in MetLife Stadium, 23-16.
"We're not about excuses – never will be," Daboll said. "We have people on our roster that are going to be ready to play. And that's our job as a coaching staff is to get these guys ready to play. Again, you're always going to hit adversity – whether it's in a game, whether it's in a season. We've talked about that since April. I don't think that's something you all of a sudden talk about. You have to teach it, and you have to try to learn from it. And that's everybody – it's myself, it's the coaches, it's the players, it's the support staff.
"You have to believe in your process. You have to go out there and try to execute the best you can. And if you do those things, you live with the results. And you move onto the next week."
In this case, a four-day week, which might be beneficial to the Giants.
"Mentally, I think it makes it easier because we have no choice but to quickly move on to the next opponent," defensive lineman Leonard Williams said. "Regardless of win or lose, every week we talk about flushing the last game and moving on to the next one. I think physically is where we have to be pros and take care of our body and focus more mentally than physically this week."
The Giants have numerous physical questions as they prepare for Dallas.
They lost Robinson early in the fourth quarter after he caught a six-yard pass from Daniel Jones. Robinson, the Giants second-round draft choice last spring, played the best game of his brief career, catching nine passes for an even 100 yards.
Robinson joins Sterling Shepard as wideouts the Giants have lost due to torn ACLs. In training camp, they lost Collin Johnson to a ruptured Achilles tendon. Nine different wide receivers have caught passes for the Giants this season. Now, the group will have to step up without Robinson, who is third on the team with 23 catches despite missing four games early this season with a knee injury.
"We have plenty of receivers on the roster," Daboll said. "So, it's a short week. We'll get the guys ready to go, and we'll revisit things like we always do each week and see where it goes."
When he spoke to the media this morning, Daboll did not have updates on the other injured players, including cornerbacks Adoree' Jackson (knee) and Fabian Moreau (oblique), center Jon Feliciano (neck), tackle Tyre Phillips (neck) and safety Jason Pinnock (jaw). It's uncertain how many, if any, will suit up on Thursday.
"It's definitely a challenge, and having injuries is tough on any team," Williams said. "When you're losing starters to injuries, that's going to be tough on any team. We have confidence in the guys who are going to step up in those positions, and we're going to do our best to let them know that we're confident in them so that they're confident on game day."
The Giants also continue to monitor tight end Daniel Bellinger (eye), tackle Evan Neal (knee) and outside linebacker Azeez Ojulari (on injured reserve with a calf injury).
"I'd say they're coming along," Daboll said. "I think they're improving. Whether or not they'll be ready this week, (it's) too early to give you an answer to that."
Matt Peart replaced Phillips – who has been starting for Neal – at right tackle. Nick Gates took over at center and played 25 snaps, his most extensive action since returning from the gruesome lower left leg injury he suffered 14 months ago in Washington.
"WIt was definitely good to be out there with the team and actually take offensive line snaps this week," Gates said. "It felt good. Definitely good to be back out there with the team."
Gates said he'll be ready to go if Feliciano is unable to play in Dallas.
"I'm fine with that," Gates said. "I've got about 20 starts at center, so I feel comfortable getting in there and doing it. It's almost like riding a bike, I feel like."
*The Giants had a walk-through instead of a practice but were required to release an injury report because they play on Thursday. Practice participation was projected.
Those who would not have participated were Bellinger, Feliciano, Jackson, Moreau and Phillips, as well as wide receiver Richie James (knee) and offensive lineman Joshua Ezeudu (neck).
Neal and Pinnock would have been limited.
"These guys are pretty sore after games," Daboll said. "So, what you try to do is you sit down with the training staff, sports science, and you come up with the best schedule you can for your team to make sure they're getting rehabbed and they're taking advantage of all the treatments after the walkthroughs. We'll set it up similar. We won't be out there running around, but we'll do some walkthroughs. We'll have a little break. Then we'll go out there and do some more walkthroughs. Obviously, it's a big mental week for us and then just getting your body right to play a game on such a quick turnaround."
View rare photos from the historic rivalry between the New York Giants and Dallas Cowboys.
Vote Giants to 2023 Pro Bowl Games
Online voting is now open for the 2023 Pro Bowl Games. Vote for your favorite Giants players.