Tavarres King was at his home in New Jersey watching the Giants game on Sunday.
So he was expecting the call.
“Just a little bit after the game,” he said when asked when his phone rang with that familiar 201 area code. “Kind of after they figured out what was going on with everybody.”
It was, of course, the Giants, the team that had waived him just before the Week 2 game against the Lions, calling to invite him back as a reinforcement after four of their wide receivers left the game with serious injuries, three of them season-ending.
By Monday, he had re-signed with the team.
“The circumstances stink,” King said on Tuesday. “You obviously want to be in a room with all of your brothers. Man, it’s a major blow . . . It hurts my heart for those guys to lose a season like that.”
Their loss, though, is King’s gain. He’ll go from watching the game against the Chargers from his couch to playing what figures to be a pretty large role in the game against the Broncos this Sunday. King was on the team all season last year and even caught a touchdown in the playoff game against the Packers. He started this summer’s training camp right where he left off, but an ankle injury sidetracked that momentum. By the second week of the season, with needs at other areas on the 53-man roster, he had become expendable.
“It’s part of the business, you know what I’m saying?” King said of being waived. “Obviously, I would have loved to play in that game, be a part of that game, but we had some issues I think at linebacker so we had to make some tough decisions, but that is part of the business.”
He said his conversations at the time with the Giants did not seem very final.
“It was kind of like it wasn’t a goodbye,” he said. “More of a see you later.”
Later came sooner than anyone thought.
King said he has been working out and staying in shape. That ankle injury is a thing of the past. “One thousand percent,” he said of its status. And he is ready to step back into the offense.
“It’s extremely important to have the opportunity to showcase what I can do and not just that, but to help this team in any way that I can,” King said. “Get things rolling, bring some energy, bring some explosiveness . . . It feels good to be back home.”