Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie will be back on the field with the Giants for practice on Wednesday after what amounted to a one-week suspension for violating team rules, the team announced.
The veteran cornerback met with coach Ben McAdoo on Tuesday morning at the Giants’ facility to discuss what the team called an indefinite suspension that could have lasted as long as four weeks. Both men came away from the meeting satisfied by the tone and the result of their conversation, a source said.
McAdoo disciplined Rodgers-Cromartie last week when he left the team after a disagreement over being benched for the game against the Broncos. That initial discipline was based on his actions in the Week 5 game against the Chargers, when he left the sideline during the game in an apparent disagreement with the coaching staff. He did return to the sideline during that game.
McAdoo told broadcasters for Sunday’s game that there were four separate incidents that led to his decision to suspend Rodgers-Cromartie but would not elaborate when pressed on the subject by other reporters.
“We’d like to handle our disciplinary issues in-house,” McAdoo said last week. “We do it on a case-by-case basis, and we generally don’t like to broadcast how we handle it.”
The suspension cost Rodgers-Cromartie $410,588 in salary.
The Giants did not have practice on Tuesday and the players had the day off, but some took time to welcome back the popular cornerback on social media. Defensive tackle Damon Harrison posted a video of a happy dancing baby to express his excitement. Safety Landon Collins said after Sunday’s game that it was going to be “awesome” to have Rodgers-Cromartie back.
To make room on their 53-man roster for Rodgers-Cromartie, the Giants parted ways with cornerback Michael Hunter, who injured his hamstring in Sunday’s game in Denver. He was waived/injured. Donte Deayon, who was promoted from the practice squad and took Rodgers-Cromartie’s place last week, will remain on the active roster.
Rodgers-Cromartie returns to a secondary that is coming off its best game of the season, and a defense that was able to dominate the Broncos. The Giants’ secondary accounted for three takeaways in Sunday’s win, including an interception by Collins and an interception returned for a touchdown by Janoris Jenkins. Jenkins also forced a fumble that was recovered by Eli Apple.
Where Rodgers-Cromartie fits into the defense now remains to be seen. Also unclear is whether Rodgers-Cromartie will be benched because of the initial infraction during the Chargers game and have to sit parts of this week’s game against the Seahawks, or if the suspension covers that discipline too.
McAdoo said he did not intend to announce Rodgers-Cromartie’s benching last week, but it became public and he had to suspend him, so that answer may not be clear until kickoff on Sunday at MetLife Stadium.
Without him, the Giants started Apple and Jenkins on the outside and Ross Cockrell played in the slot. Deayon also played in the sub packages. Rodgers-Cromartie, who was named to the Pro Bowl last year for his play in the slot, most likely will take Cockrell’s place.
Notes & quotes: The Giants placed DE Romeo Okwara on injured reserve with a knee injury suffered in practice last week and were awarded LB Nigel Harris off waivers from the Chargers. Harris is an undrafted rookie who played in five games for the Chargers and had two special teams tackles against the Giants in Week 5 . . . The Giants will wear a decal with the number 14 on their helmets for the rest of the season in honor of Y.A. Tittle, the Hall of Fame quarterback who died last week.