It sure seemed as if the Giants had no choice but to make Damontre Moore their starting defensive end after putting Mathias Kiwanuka and Robert Ayers Jr. on injured reserve this week.
But they may have found a way to avoid it.
Defensive coordinator Perry Fewell said Moore would be "in a rotation" and "won't be an every-down player" on Sunday at Tennessee, while hinting that DT Cullen Jenkins would get the start if he is able to come back from his calf injury. Jenkins has been limited in practices this week.
The reason Moore won't be tapped for the full-time job?
"He's a better pass defender than a run defender," Fewell said. "He does play the run. We'd like for him to play the run stouter than he does right now."
Asked what is lacking in Moore's game against the run, Fewell had a list at the ready.
"Strength. Power. And discipline," he said. "It's a combination of the three."
Tom Coughlin noted Moore's lack of size earlier in the week, suggesting that he had lost weight during the season. He's listed at 250 pounds. That's 20-25 pounds lighter than Kiwanuka or Ayers and almost 30 lighter than Jason Pierre-Paul.
Even with all of that against him, Moore certainly will have to play a role on Sunday against the Titans. When he spoke to the media on Thursday though - just before Fewell did - it seemed to be from the perspective of the new starter.
"I've been waiting for it a long time and I'm ready to step up," he said. "I've been preparing a lot and have had a lot of great veteran leadership in front of me. I feel like it's my time and I'm ready to take advantage of it ... I'm just ready to go out there and prove to everybody that I can do it, be an every-down defensive end not just a third-down pass rusher, a situational guy."
He may be ready. Clearly the Giants are not.