The New York Giants are trying to make a playoff push heading into Week 13 against the Washington Commanders. Washington has won three consecutive games, whereas the Giants have lost their last two to Detroit and Dallas.
However, with the team littered with injuries, the coaching staff has had their work cut out for them. There’s hope that reinforcements are on the way across the board, which should give the roster a nice boost.
The Giants are expecting several offensive linemen to return against Washington, notably Evan Neal, Jon Feliciano, and potentially Ben Bredeson.
On the defensive side, Adoree Jackson remains out but pass rusher Azeez Ojulari is primed for a return, helping out the defensive line. In the secondary, the Giants have missed Xavier McKinney significantly, locking down the deeper portion of the backfield. McKinney was knocked out during the bye week due to a fractured hand he sustained ATVing in Cabo.
However, the Giants’ star free safety indicated that he expects to return this season, hoping to make an impact down the stretch when the Giants are making a legitimate playoff push.
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Per Jordan Raanan of ESPN, McKinney believes he will return this season to help the defense.
New York Giants safety Xavier McKinney told ESPN on Tuesday that he expects to return this season from the hand injury he suffered in a bye-week ATV accident in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.
The New York Giants severely miss Xaver McKinney’s impact:
Across eight games this season, the 23-year-old tallied 38 combined tackles, two tackles for loss, one forced fumble, and four passes defended. His numbers weren’t extraordinary by any means, but opposing teams refused to target him downfield due to his range and vision.
In the meantime, defensive coordinator Wink Martindale has deployed Dane Belton, Jason Pinnock, and Julian Love to help supplement the loss of McKinney.
Those three players aren’t capable of fully supplementing Xavier, but Love has done a tremendous job filling in where needed. In fact, he has fully justified a contract extension, cementing himself as a focal point on defense.