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Giants discover quarterback Mike Glennon has concussion after loss to Dolphins

Mike Glennon of the Giants walks off the

Mike Glennon of the Giants walks off the field after the game against the Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium on Sunday in Miami Gardens, Fla. Credit: Getty Images/Mark Brown

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — To anyone who watched the Giants’ offense Sunday — or during the past three weeks, for that matter — and assumed there is no way things can possibly get any worse for that unit: Think again.

The Giants might play their next game with a quarterback who has never taken an NFL snap and joined the team less than a week ago.

With starter Daniel Jones already sidelined by a neck injury that kept him out of the game against the Dolphins and backup Mike Glennon suffering a concussion at some point during the Giants’ 20-9 loss at Hard Rock Stadium (despite finishing the game), the next man up for them could very well be Jake Fromm, who was snatched off the Bills’ practice squad early last week.

Glennon’s diagnosis clearly was a surprise to coach Joe Judge; when the team made the announcement, he had just finished saying he expected Glennon to start next week against the Chargers in Los Angeles if Jones is not cleared for contact.

It caught others off guard as well. Wide receiver Kenny Golladay — who suffered a rib injury — learned about it during his postgame media appearance. He voiced vague encouragement for whoever plays quarterback next. Running back Saquon Barkley seemed confused when Glennon’s injury status was mentioned but spoke about having a "next-man-up mentality."

At least safety Logan Ryan was aware of the situation when he spoke to reporters. He offered his services to the offense and encouraged folks to look up his film as a high school quarterback.

"I’m a lot like Tua [Tago-vailoa] as a lefty; I can throw 2-yard passes to the left," Ryan said. "I’m accurate. Smart. I’m just putting it out there."

It’s unlikely to come to that. But that doesn’t mean it will be all that much better than if Ryan indeed were under center.

Fromm underwent a crash course in the Giants’ offense this past week, so he was able to dress and be somewhat prepared as the backup to Glennon.

"You think about what can happen," he said Friday about the prospect of making his pro debut if Glennon were to get hurt, "but honestly, the focus for me has just been learning as much as I can about this offense, this system and how we do things here."

Now he’s about to move into the ultra-accelerated program as the potential starter.  

The Glennon injury is the latest in a season that has been derailed by so many of them, it’s hard to keep track of who is still on the roster. Sterling Shepard has played in just two games (well, one and a half) since Sept. 26. Kadarius Toney has hurt everything from his ankle to his finger, with a recent oblique injury to cover the rest of his body. Golladay has hardly had a week this season without nursing some kind of ailment, and that’s sure to continue now with his rib issue.

There is a chance Jones will be cleared to return by the next game, though that seems to be unlikely. Jones was on the field throwing and running during pregame warmups looking unencumbered, but the damage to his neck — it’s still being called a strain — is such that the Giants are unwilling to risk having him play. He’ll undergo a checkup with the medical staff Monday.

"When they deem him ready to return for contact and play full, then we’ll have him out there," Judge said. "I ask all the time: Is it pain management or injury risk? When it’s injury risk, that’s not on my plate . . . Daniel is champing at the bit to get back out there. We want to make sure the doctors can give us the clearest picture of what his health and status is and when it’s safe to put him on the field."

Sunday’s performance by Glennon was uninspiring but far from abnormal, given the doldrums the offense has been in since the Giants’ bye. They have scored two touchdowns in those three games and were unable to reach the end zone Sunday.

Glennon (23-for-44 for 187 yards and an interception) received little help from his playmakers. Barkley dropped two passes and had only 74 total yards — 23 of them on one run and 22 of them on a pair of catches in the final minute of desperation play. Golladay missed most of the first half with his rib injury — he said X-rays revealed no fractures — but returned in the second half and finished with three catches for 37 yards.

The Giants fell to 4-8. It was the fifth straight win for the Dolphins (6-7).

The Giants did have a chance to make a big offensive splash while trailing 10-6 in the third quarter. On third-and-2 from the Giants’ 46, the Dolphins’ defense was in disarray as Barkley motioned from the backfield and was uncovered. Glennon saw the opening and called for the quick snap. Because of the defensive confusion, tight end Evan Engram leaked behind the secondary and Glennon tried to hit him with a deep throw. Engram spun his body around the wrong way, recovered and nearly made the catch for a long gain, but it fell incomplete. John Ross also appeared to be open on the play.

The Giants punted on fourth-and-2.

"The opportunities are there to take," a clearly frustrated Barkley said. "We didn’t do that today no matter who was at quarterback."

The defense, meanwhile, could not stop the high-accuracy passing of Tagovailoa (30-for-41 for 244 yards). On the Dolphins’ two touchdown drives, he was a combined 16-for-17 for 137 yards, each of those capped with a short scoring pass. The first was a 5-yarder to Mack Hollins that broke a 3-3 tie in the second quarter. The second, a 2-yarder to Isaiah Ford, made it 17-6 with 11:06 left in the game.

It was the first game this season in which the Giants’ defense did not create a takeaway.

"We have to make more plays," cornerback James Bradberry said. "It’s definitely difficult to go out there and play perfect."

Flawless football is almost necessary when the other side of the line of scrimmage is so awful — and showing no signs of improving.

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