Winless Giants limp into meeting with Broncos
DENVER -- The injury-ravaged New York Giants remain winless, and they suspended one of their top defensive players.
Still, the rested Denver Broncos, who are 3-1 and didn't play last week, have no intention of taking their Sunday night foe lightly.
"We know the Giants are 0-5," Broncos running back C.J. Anderson said. "But, we also know they have Pro Bowl players over there. If you don't show up in this business every week, you're going to get your butt kicked. Their goal is to come in here and get a 'W.' Our goal is also to win. Both teams have one thing in common."
It has been one tough week for the Giants, however. They lost three of their best wide receivers to season-ending injuries: Odell Beckham Jr. (ankle fracture), Dwayne Harris (foot fracture) and former Bronco Brandon Marshall (ankle ligament damage).
On Wednesday, cornerback Dominque Rodgers-Cromartie, apparently upset over his role with the team after being pulled from the Giants' 27-22 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers last Sunday, abruptly left the practice facility, and coach Ben McAdoo suspended him.
Cornerback Eli Apple, who was benched for the first three series last week, is expected to return to the starting role assumed by Rodgers-Cromartie the week before.
The Giants filled out their depleted receiving corps by re-signing Tavarres King, who was with the team in training camp, and re-signing Darius Powe, also a late training camp cut, to their practice squad.
Roger Lewis finished last Sunday's game as the only healthy receiver on New York's roster. The Giants hope that wide receiver Sterling Shepard, who has missed practice time this week because of an ankle injury, will be able to go. He remains questionable, though.
"I think the good thing is most of them were here during training camp," Giants quarterback Eli Manning said. "Tavarres King has been with us the last couple of years and played for us in the regular season, caught some touchdowns. Roger Lewis played all last year, played this year.
"A few other guys have been here on the practice squad, so they know the system, they know the plays and the routes and concepts. So it's not brand new for them, and so they should be able to hop in there and play."
The bottom line for the Giants is that they have to persevere through all the injuries and tumult.
"We've got to keep working. That's all you can do," Manning said. "We've got a game to get ready for. We've got some new guys on offense who we've got to get up to speed. ... We've just got to go out there, compete our tails off and try to get a win."
As for the Broncos, they're approaching the Sunday contest focused on putting everything into their play while refusing to dwell on the possible impact of all the problems facing the Giants.
"I think Coach (Vance) Joseph had a good message right after we played (and lost to) the Bills," Broncos quarterback Trevor Siemian said. "There's no upsets. There's no favorites in the NFL because anything can happen every week. You see plenty of evidence of that every Sunday.
"The Giants are coming in here with a chip on their shoulder. It's going to be a great challenge for us. They have a bunch of great players. They have a Hall of Fame quarterback. They have a great team. We have to be ready to play."
New York's depleted receiver corps will leave the Giants at a disadvantage against the Denver defense, which leads the league in yards allowed per game (260.8).
"They are a good defense. They have good players," Manning said. "They have a good scheme, so we have to have great preparation. We can't make it easy for them, so we have to go out and execute.
"We have to be able to get first downs, don't make the mistakes and see where we can get some of our best matchups and go make some plays."
The Broncos certainly will have the advantage from a team-wide health perspective after being idle last week. Wide receiver Cody Latimer missed practice time with a knee injury and is questionable.
Meanwhile, the Giants' injuries go beyond their receiver corps. Center Weston Richburg is in the league-mandated concussion protocol and must be cleared medically before rejoining team workouts.
Running back Paul Perkins (ribs), safety Landon Collins (ankle) and linebacker Jonathan Casillas (neck) all missed practice time this week and remain questionable for the Sunday game.
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