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No surgery needed for Giants' Rashad Jennings

Giants running back Rashad Jennings #23 celebrates after

Giants running back Rashad Jennings #23 celebrates after running for a first down against the Atlanta Falcons at MetLife Stadium on Oct. 5, 2014 in East Rutherford, N.J. Credit: Mike Stobe

Rashad Jennings didn't want to be weighed down by the medical mumbo-jumbo.

"I asked the doctor: 'Surgery or no surgery? No surgery? See you later,' " he said.

That was the good news when he returned from his MRI Monday morning. The Giants' starting running back won't require any procedures for the left knee injury he suffered in Sunday's win over the Falcons.

The bad news is that he did sprain the MCL in that knee and could miss several weeks.

Jennings did not put a time frame on his return, but Tom Coughlin said he will consider Jennings "day-to-day" until he hears otherwise. It's typically a three-to-four-week injury.

That leaves rookie Andre Williams as the team's primary ballcarrier heading into a string of two critical NFC East road games. Williams, who replaced Jennings in Sunday's game, finished with 65 rushing yards and a touchdown on 20 carries. Peyton Hillis likely will become the third-down back and handle much of the pass-protection duties. The Giants also promoted second-year running back Michael Cox from their practice squad.

"I practice every day like I'm going to play the whole game," Williams said. "You can't go into a week saying 'I'm second string, I'm third string, I might not play,' because it's always a next-man-up mentality. I've had a couple games of success now, the guys are rallying behind me, the O-line is making me feel comfortable. We're getting better as a group."

Jennings often has been on the other end of this dynamic. For most of his career, he's been the backup who tried to stay ready to replace the starter. He said he passed some of that wisdom on to Williams.

"We had a long talk," Jennings said. "I'm giving him as many weapons as I can mentally to play with so he can go physically dominate like he can."

Jennings said he's had similar injuries in the past and has undergone injections of platelet-rich plasma and stem cells to speed up the recovery, but he held off on committing to those treatments this time. He said he will rely on sleeping in his hyperbaric chamber and other treatments such as massage and electric stimulation. He also said he will be around the team during his rehab.

"When you are in a leadership role, you have to show your face through all the music," he said. "I'm hurt. I'm here. I'll be back."

New York Sports