The New York Giants placed kicker Graham Gano on injured reserve as he prepares to undergo surgery on his left knee. Gano has been dealing with pain and swelling in his knee for the past few weeks. However, despite these issues, the medical staff still cleared him to continue kicking. This decision has received major backlash as the injury has proven to significantly impact Gano’s level of play.
Graham Gano defends the Giants’ medical staff
In the past two weeks alone, Gano has missed three field goals, including a crucial game-winning 35-yarder in Week 8 against the New York Jets. This caused many to question why the medical staff even cleared him to play in the first place; however, Gano came to the defense of the medical staff, stating that he trusts their decisions and that they are one of the best staffs in the league.
“I saw some of the stuff online about them and questioning them, and I don’t swear often, but I think it’s b******t, honestly because they’re one of the best in the league… I would trust my own children with them. I love those guys. They’ve done a great job with me. I think my knee probably would have been a lot worse had I not been in there getting taken care of by those guys.”Graham Gano according to Ryan Dunleavy
The Giants are one of the most injured teams in the NFL
The criticism towards Big Blue’s medical staff isn’t completely unwarranted, though, as the Giants continue to be one of the most injured teams in the league. In fact, as of 2022, the Giants have been the most injured team in the NFL since 2009.
Multiple key players have suffered significant injuries this season, leading many fans to question the overall quality of the team’s medical and training staff. Some of the injuries include:
- Daniel Jones (neck)
- Tyrod Taylor (ribs)
- Andrew Thomas (hamstring)
- Evan Neal (ankle)
- Joshua Ezeudu (toe) IR
- Matt Peart (shoulder) IR
- Shane Lemieux (biceps) IR
- Azeez Ojulari (ankle) IR
- Eric Gray (calf) IR
- Gary Brightwell (hamstring) IR
- Jashaun Corbin (hamstring)
- Darren Waller (hamstring)
- Graham Gano (knee) IR
While it is easy to simply blame Big Blue’s injury problem on the medical staff or on just plain bad luck, it may be time to consider the role of the coaching staff in the mismanagement and handling of these injuries. Most notably, the handling of the injury suffered by star left tackle Andrew Thomas.
Thomas suffered a hamstring injury in the Week 1 blowout loss to the Dallas Cowboys. Thomas reportedly suffered the injury chasing down a defender on a blocked field goal at the end of the Giants’ opening drive. Surprisingly, head coach Brian Daboll chose to keep Thomas on the field for most of the game despite the obvious impact on his performance.
The decision is a head-scratcher considering the significant negative impact Thomas’ absence has had on the team. Although it isn’t clear that this choice contributed to the severity of the injury, it is still undoubtedly a poor decision from Daboll to even take that risk.
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The Giants need to find a solution to their injury problems
Big Blue just can’t seem to catch a break when it comes to injuries. While injuries are just an unfortunate part of the game, the amount of injuries suffered by the G-Men throughout the years is alarming.
It is unclear whether the blame should lay with the medical staff or the coaching staff, but one thing is certain: the Giants must find a solution to maintain the health of their players and break free from the cycle of injury-plagued seasons.