The Giants are off on Tuesday, but will be back at practice tomorrow and many of the injured players are expected to return for duty. WR Victor Cruz (calf), CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (concussion), OT Ereck Flowers (ankle) and DE Robert Ayers, Jr. (hamstring) are all expected to participate on Wednesday. Also due back is rookie DE Owa Odighizuwa (foot) who has been inactive for the first three games of the season.
“Our guys have to go through a full week of practice to prove that they’re ready to go,” head coach Tom Coughlin said on Monday. “That’s a big day for a lot of these guys. To be able to come back, and remember Cruz was good once before and came back the second day and the second day is a longer and more difficult session because of that. They’ll be well-tested by then.”
Coughlin is well aware of what Cruz's return means to his team...
"It feels like he’s excited and anxious to get back in there," said Coughlin "Other guys feel that energy and that passion and that’s a good thing."
He went on to discuss the biggest part of Cruz's game, his ability to gain yards after the catch.
"Well, it’s certainly something that he brings to the table, but it’s something you need because in today’s games, so much is quick, ball comes out, tempo-type things that if you break a tackle and go, it makes it look like a long play," said Coughlin. "It’s very obvious that’s a huge part of the game today and because he’s been able to do that—and we’ve had other guys do that, as well—we look forward to that part of it, too, because it gives you another dimension."
Coughlin noted that the team was "a work in progress" that is not quite where he wants them to be.
"Well, we’re not there, but we’re trying like heck," he said. "I think our attitude and our effort is good. We still have our situational issues, but we’re grinding away, grinding away and hopefully we’re going to improve every time we play."
Next up are Rex Ryan and the Buffalo Bills, who will be without RB LeSean McCoy, who haunted the Giants during his time with the Eagles. Coughlin said he watched on Sunday as the Bills trounced the Dolphins in Miami, 41-14.
"They’re a good football team," he said. "Obviously, they are. Defensively, they’re very, very good; offensively, they’re explosive, powerful, they can throw the ball and have multiple talented guys. They had a heck of a game."
Coughlin said he also watched the Atlanta Falcons' comeback victory in Dallas, a game between the teams responsible for the Giants' first two loses this season...
"Yeah, yeah. It didn’t look like that was going to happen for a while and then all of a sudden, the second half was—but that’s what’s happening in the division," he noted.