Giants cornerback Corey Webster, front, prepares to intercept a pass...

Giants cornerback Corey Webster, front, prepares to intercept a pass intended for Buffalo Bills wide receiver Steve Johnson during the third quarter. (Oct. 16, 2011) Credit: AP

While the Giants figure how to use Prince Amukamara when he returns, they have already decided how they will use another of their cornerbacks: Corey Webster.

Since the Eagles game three weeks ago, the Giants have been matching up Webster on the opposing team's top receiving threat. That's a shift in philosophy for a defense that used to just give their cornerbacks a side and have them take whichever receiver showed up there.

Webster has done a pretty good job of limiting players such as Larry Fitzgerald, Sidney Rice and Stevie Johnson. In the last three games against the Giants, those receivers were held to a total of 17 catches for 179 yards and one touchdown. Fitzgerald had the bulk of those numbers - 8 catches for 102 yards - but Webster broke up a pass thrown to him in the fourth quarter to seal the victory in Arizona.

"I'll measure it by this: we don't call his name too much," defensive coordinator Perry Fewell said of assessing Webster's performances. "I'd like to keep it that way. Except when he gets interceptions. Corey's been doing exceptionally well."

Fewell said they made the change to "challenge" Webster and build his confidence. And he likes what it has produced, both on the field and in the player.

"You see a sparkle in their eye," he said of giving players more responsibility. "It wasn't that Webby comes out and says, 'Hey, I'm the guy' or anything like that. He doesn't beat his chest. He studies. But there's that twinkle, that look like, 'I got this responsibility, I am the man.' You see his practice habits improve. You see his whole demeanor improve."

Bradshaw honored

For the second time in six games, a Giants player has been named NFC Offensive Player of the Week. This time it was Ahmad Bradshaw, who scored three touchdowns and ran for 104 yards in Sunday's win over the Bills. Eli Manning took the same honor in Week 3 after beating the Eagles. It's the second time Bradshaw has earned the award. He was also named Player of the Week in Week 4 last season for his 129 rushing yards against the Bears.

Giant steps

Safeties coach Dave Merritt said Kenny Phillips is playing the best he has since the Giants drafted him. Phillips sat out Tuesday's practice with a rib injury . . . Fewell said the return of Justin Tuck will allow Jason Pierre-Paul to play 10-15 fewer snaps per game, which should help his production. "He plays slow at times," Fewell said of Pierre-Paul. "We think that's because he's winded. If he had that little breather on the sideline, he could come in and produce and do some things that we feel like can accelerate his game to a different level."

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