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Kaden Smith may start at TE again for Giants

Giants tight end Kaden Smith celebrates a touchdown

Giants tight end Kaden Smith celebrates a touchdown against the Bears during the first half in Chicago on Nov. 24, 2019. Credit: AP/Paul Sancya

Jones to Smith. It sounds like a hypothetical, or as if someone is trying to use generic names to fill in blanks. But on Sunday, the made-up-sounding combination resulted in a touchdown that, for a while, gave the Giants a lead in their game against the Bears.

Daniel Jones to Kaden Smith, in this case, were the quarterback and tight end with the nondescript surnames. And against the Packers, the rookies may be at it again. Tight ends Evan Engram (foot) and Rhett Ellison (concussion) did not practice on Wednesday and it seems unlikely they will be ready for the game. For the second week in a row, Smith could be starting at the position.

“I thought his first outing was pretty good,” Pat Shurmur said of Smith, who was a sixth-round pick by the 49ers but waived earlier this season, and the Giants pounced on him. “We liked him from the get-go…and when he became available we wanted to make him a part of our team.”

It wasn’t until last week, though, that he became part of the gameplan.

“You have all these things you think about a young man and then you put him in there and you wonder if it’s going to be too big for him,” Shurmur said. “It wasn’t. You walk away from that and say he did a lot of really good things. There are some things he can do better. But his involvement in the game, he handled it really well, so you can build on that.”

Notes & quotes: The Giants designated LB Kareem Martin to return from injured reserve and he began practicing with the team on Wednesday, They have three weeks to activate him to the 53-man roster. That move ended the season for WR Russell Shepard (foot), who also was on injured reserve but now cannot be designated to return. Shepard, on a one-year contract with the Giants, said he would like to re-sign with the team next season…With the team’s two top punt returners unlikely to play this week (Golden Tate has a concussion, Jabrill Peppers a back injury), the Giants promoted WR Da’Mari Scott from the practice squad with an eye toward using him in that role.

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