New York Giants place LB Tae Crowder on IR, sign pass rusher from Jacksonville practice squad

New York Giants, Tae Crowder

The New York Giants continue to take hits on defense, as they previously lost outside linebacker Lorenzo Carter to a season-ending Achilles injury against Dallas two weeks ago.

In week six against Washington, the star of the game was linebacker Tae Crowder, who took a fumble back for a touchdown, giving his team a late lead.

Crowder, who was developing nicely alongside Blake Martinez at middle linebacker, will miss a minimum of three weeks on injured reserve. The new rules due to COVID-19 indicate that a player can make a return in as little as three weeks, and he will have about four weeks to recover, including the BYE week after they play the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in week eight.

Against Washington, Crowder finished with a 53.6 coverage grade, his second-best of the year. He had his best grade against the Los Angeles Rams, with a 72.7 coverage grade, via PFF. While he wasn’t stellar against Washington, the defense got the job done and managed to escape with their first victory of the season.

New York Giants are bringing in another defender:

The corresponding move by the Giants was to sign Jabaal Sheard off the Jacksonville Jaguars’ practice squad. Sheard is an outside linebacker who will not supplement Crowder but rather Lorenzo Carter.

In 2019, he started in 12 games for the Indianapolis Colts, posting 4.5 sacks, 25 combined tackles, nine quarterback hits, and five tackles for a loss. Earlier in his career, back in 2011, Sheard was produced with the Cleveland Browns. He reached a high of 8.5 sacks and five forced fumbles in his rookie year, which is a long way away at this point.

Sheard has since fallen off a bit but brings good experience to the Giants and the ability to rotate in alongside Markus Golden and Kyler Fackrell. It will take him a few weeks to learn the defensive scheme, but I imagine he will quickly incorporate into the Giants’ defense as their pass rushers remain thin. I anticipate a few additional moves being made after Thursday’s contest against the Philadelphia Eagles.