Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie said he is playing at only "60 percent'' of his abilities because of a nagging injury affecting the entire right side of his body, but he expects to be on the field Sunday against the Cowboys.
"At the end of the day you want to be out there and fight,'' he said Thursday after missing a second straight practice. "I get a rest, go into the game, I feel good. I get to banging out there and things go different. Hopefully, with enough rest this week, I'll be all right.''
Rodgers-Cromartie hasn't finished any of the last three games. He is listed on the injury report as having a hamstring and back problem. He came out of Sunday's game against the Eagles with what the Giants called back spasms.
Tom Coughlin left the door open for Rodgers-Cromartie to play without practicing this week if he is healthy enough on Sunday. Rodgers-Cromartie seemed unwilling to walk through it.
"You definitely need that time on the field,'' he said. "It's definitely hard to play without reps. I don't think anybody can just show up on Sunday and play.''
Which is why today's's practice will be a key barometer for his availability against the Cowboys. The Giants have a bye next week, which makes giving him two weeks of rest an alluring option. But Coughlin said he will not make a decision on Rodgers-Cromartie based on the bye.
"I think I can fight through it,'' Rodgers-Cromartie said. "I do come out, I came out the last game, but with a little more rest and the bye week I think I'll be a go . . . At the end of the day, if you can go, you can go. You don't want to hurt it further and be out any longer, but that's a decision you have to make.''
Can Beason break jinx?
Jon Beason tried to force a smile when he delivered the one-liner, but it was hard because there was so much truth behind the joke.
"Right now I'm messing it up,'' he said. "When I play, we don't win.''
Beason has played in three games this season. The Giants have lost all of them. He has been inactive for three games this season. The Giants have won all of them. That is certainly little more than coincidence, but it is something he would like to rectify Sunday.
Beason, who has practiced fully this week, played last week for the first time since aggravating his toe in Week 2. He had three tackles credited to him.
"He was rusty,'' defensive coordinator Perry Fewell said. "With more practice, more plays, more looks, he's going to make those plays for you. I look for him to be even better this week.''
Rueben Randle said being the most experienced receiver with the loss of Victor Cruz won't change his low-key personality. "I might say something here or there. Coach might ask me to do that,'' he said. "But I don't think I have to get up and give any speeches or anything.'' . . . Fewell said that based on what he's seen in practice this week, "I feel like we can bounce back and do a good job in the run game.'' The Giants allowed a season-high 203 rushing yards against the Eagles . . . QB Tony Romo, RB DeMarco Murray and T Tryon Smith practiced fully in Dallas Thursday after missing the workout Wednesday.