Sleeping was difficult for Daniel Bellinger on Tuesday night. It was uncomfortable with his ribs rolling on his side after last week’s loss to the Eagles, which he described as “very sore”. A day later, the rookie was a limited participant in practice and is expected to have no restrictions in Sunday night’s key game against the Chiefs.
“Running around, I didn’t think too much about it, just moving around to make sure it was OK and twisting a little bit,” Bellinger said Wednesday, announcing his ribs were “feeling better.”
That’s good news for the Giants. Their production isn’t where it needs to be, and Bellinger is their best option. He missed four games after requiring eye surgery and had just 39 snaps against the Eagles. Bellinger reached up to catch a Daniel Jones pass in the second quarter that actually lost 1 yard and was hit by safety Marcus Epps over the middle.
“That was the initial shock,” Bellinger said. “It wasn’t really too hard, and we got into the second half and that’s when I started to feel it.”
Bellinger is waiting to get his ribs wrapped for the upcoming game. He continues to wear a visor for extra protection over his surgically repaired left eye — he had a fractured eye socket and damaged septum — and has switched from a tinted visor to a clear one because the game is at night. said he could.
Saquon Barkley was fully involved in practice after dealing with a neck issue last week. … OL Josh Ezeudu (neck), OL Shane Lemieux (toe) and CB Adoree’ Jackson (knee) did not practice. Bellinger, DL Leonard Williams and OLB Ellerson Smith were limited. … WR Richie James and DE Jihad Ward are in the concussion protocol. Both players ran on the sideline in the cold during practice, which bodes well for their ability to pass the protocol in time to play on Sunday.
Safety Xavier McKinney continues to nurse broken fingers from the bye week. However, McKinney has yet to return to practice and will not play on Sunday. … Ben Bredeson, who hasn’t played since suffering a sprained knee in Week 7 at Jacksonville, could come off the injured reserve and return to the starting lineup at left guard. “Hopefully he has a good week and we’ll see by the end of the week,” coach Brian Daboll said.
With James in concussion protocol, the Giants needed insurance on special teams in the return game and signed Jaydon Mickens to the practice squad. Mickens, 28, has 69 punt returns for the Jaguars and Raiders in 38 NFL games, averaging 8.4 yards, with one touchdown. Mickens also has a career average of 23.2 yards on 35 carries. He has 15 receptions for 145 yards and two touchdowns and was a member of the Bucs Super Bowl LV winning team. If James isn’t available – his second of the season – the Giants could bring up Mickens and return kicks.
Striker Roy Mbaeteka’s contract has been canceled to make room for training.
WR Wan’Dale Robinson underwent surgery to repair a torn right ACL. He suffered the injury against the Lions on Nov. 20 and spent the past few weeks rehabbing his right knee before rehabbing. Given the timing of the surgery, Robinson could begin the 2023 season on the disabled list. The second-round pick, whose rookie year was slowed by injuries, had 23 receptions for 227 yards and one touchdown.