The New York Giants started the season with an 0-5 record but they’ll soon have a key player back to rejoin the hunt for a first win. That player is wide receiver Sterling Shepard, who went down with a turf toe injury during the team’s loss to the Chicago Bears. It was a stroke of bad luck in a game that had plenty of that for the Giants, as they also lost Saquon Barkley for the season in the very same game.
However, the forecast for Shepard fortunately shows a faster turnaround than Barkley will have. After the missed time, he’s set to get back to practice this week according to a report from Jordan Raanan.
Giants plan with WR Sterling Shepard is to get him on practice field this week. His window off IR will be opened. See how he moves after missing three games w/turf toe. A chance he gets back Sunday vs. Washington, but next Thursday vs. Eagles maybe the more likely scenario.
— Jordan Raanan (@JordanRaanan) October 13, 2020
It doesn’t, however, look like Shepard will make his return on Sunday against Washington. The team seems more likely to take a conservative approach with the injury and not rush Shepard back into action.
The impact of Sterling Shepard’s return
When Shepard does return, it will mean another weapon is available for Daniel Jones. Jones could use the help, as although his chemistry with Darius Slayton aided the Giants against the Cowboys, he only has two passing touchdowns overall. To make matters worse for the second year QB, he already has five interceptions and had a key fumble against Dallas.
The Giants are committed to Daniel Jones as their quarterback, but they were also committed to Eli Manning only weeks before Jones replaced him. Jones doesn’t have limitless job security, and so having a full arsenal of weapons in the receiving game will be important for him in his fight to deter the Giants from drafting Trevor Lawrence if they get the chance.
Shepard had 6 receptions for 47 yards in the season opener against the Steelers. Not the greatest numbers, but right now, the Giants need all the help they can get when it comes to offense. Especially when the performance of the passing game this season has a big role to play in the quarterback debates of the future.