Hakeem Nicks' knee is swollen again, and the wide receiver is back on the injury report with his status for Sunday against the Bengals up in the air.
Nicks missed Wednesday's practice, his first absence in two weeks, because of the inflammation. "We are going to rest him," Tom Coughlin said, with no indication of whether Nicks would practice later in the week. The last time Nicks had swelling in his knee the Giants were very cautious with him and he missed three games. Since returning he's caught only 13 passes in four games and clearly has been struggling.
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"Hakeem is out there battling when a lot of guys would shut it down and conserve themselves or protect themselves," said fellow wide receiver Domenik Hixon, who likely will start if Nicks cannot against the Bengals. "He's out there playing for us. We appreciate that. He's nicked up, but he's doing everything he can to be out there."
Nicks did not address the media Wednesday, but he was spotted walking past reporters in a hallway. Asked how he's doing, Nicks said: "I'm good."
Phillips out until Packers
Don't call it a setback, Coughlin said. Whatever he calls it, it will keep Kenny Phillips out for Sunday's game against the Bengals and allow him to rest his ailing knee through the bye week. Coughlin said the team has shut their safety down until at least the Nov. 25 game against the Packers.
"It's not a setback," Coughlin insisted, even though at this time last week Phillips was practicing and talking as if he planned to play against the Steelers. "I think what's going to happen is we're going to try to rest him this week and then through the bye, and hopefully we can get him back."
The Giants did get an infusion of depth at safety with the return of Will Hill from a four-game suspension.
Chris Snee (ankle) missed practice and the Giants waived his backup, Mitch Petrus, over the weekend so they didn't have a true guard to take his snaps during Wednesday's workout. In stepped T James Brewer to field the reps. Asked when the last time he played guard was, Brewer said: "Never" . . . The Nov. 25 home game against the Packers has not been flexed and will remain an 8:20 p.m. start on NBC . . . RB Andre Brown (shoulder) said he feels fine but said he won't be able to test if his shoulder can take a hit until "around 1 o'clock on Sunday." . . . Also missing practice were LB Chase Blackburn (hamstring), RB Ahmad Bradshaw (foot), DT Chris Canty (groin) and LB Jacquian Williams (knee). LB Keith Rivers (calf), C David Baas (ankle) and TE Bear Pascoe (ankle) were limited.