Andre Brown can't return to Giants until Week 10

Giants running back Andre Brown (35) on the

Giants running back Andre Brown (35) on the sideline during the second quarter of an NFL preseason football game against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Saturday in Pittsburgh. New York won 18-13. (Aug. 10, 2013) Photo Credit: AP

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Andre Brown is heading to the short-term injured reserve list for the second year in a row.

The Giants running back at some point this week likely will be placed on injured reserve with a designation to return after suffering a fracture in his lower left leg in last Thursday's preseason finale. The first opportunity for the team to move Brown there was Tuesday at 4 p.m., but the Giants will wait -- most likely until the end of the week -- in case they need to use the designation on another player who may be injured in practice this week. Teams can use the designation only once each season.

Brown, who was expected back after four to six weeks, was told of the decision and pending roster move.

"See y'all Week 8," he wrote on his Twitter page.

In fact, Brown won't be eligible to return to game action until Week 10. A player on injured reserve who is designated to return can resume practicing with his team after six weeks but must miss eight weeks of games. The Giants have a bye in Week 9. Brown will be eligible to play again in the Nov. 10 game against the Raiders.

The decision is not unexpected. It does, however, leave the Giants in a bit of a lurch at running back. Starter David Wilson remains in that position but behind him are two unproven players in Da'Rel Scott (11 career carries) and rookie Michael Cox.

Because the Giants expect Brown to return at some point, they are waiting to add a veteran back to the roster. Doing so this week would guarantee the contract for anyone with four or more seasons of experience. If the Giants wait until next week, though, the player can be released at any time.

Two names to consider are Ryan Grant, who played for the Giants before he was traded to Green Bay in 2007, and Tim Hightower, who worked out for the Giants this offseason as a free agent.

Jonathan Dwyer, Beanie Wells and former Jet Leon Washington were reportedly among the backs who worked out for the Giants Tuesday.

This is the second year that teams are allowed to designate a player to return from injured reserve. Last year the Giants used the designation on Brown as well after he initially fractured his fibula in November against the Packers.

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