New year, same old issue for the Giants?
The offense did not have its full stable of weapons for a single play last season and might not again Monday against the Steelers because wide receiver Golden Tate (hamstring) was listed as questionable on the final injury report. Sterling Shepard, Evan Engram, Darius Slayton and Saquon Barkley — all of whom missed games last season — are ready to go.
“We have a lot of guys who can make plays,” quarterback Daniel Jones said. “All those guys bring something different to the table and allow us to attack defenses in a lot of ways. We’ll look to utilize guys’ strengths.”
Tate was limited in Saturday’s practice and spent time getting treatment from the trainers, as mostly has been the case since he left Aug. 31 practice early after grabbing his right hamstring while extending to make a catch. Coach Joe Judge credited Tate for “working hard” to get ready.
Tight end Levine Toilolo and linebacker Tae Crowder also are questionable with hamstring injuries.
Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger did not practice Saturday because of a coach’s decision, according to the injury report, and guard Dave DeCastro (knee) is out.
The Giants have until 4 p.m. Monday to promote up to two players from the practice squad under a new rule. They must designate 48 (increased from 46) of their 53-55 players active by 90 minutes before kickoff.
Wide receiver and cornerback are areas they could use a boost to depth.
“We haven’t decided whether or not we’re going to bring up anybody,” Judge said. “We’re entertaining all options throughout the week. We practice everyone accordingly for the game plan.”
Not that much suspense remained based on practice reps, but Judge officially declared center Nick Gates as the winner of a position battle over Spencer Pulley. After Monday, Gates will have four career NFL starts at three different positions on the line.
“We’re very happy with both of those guys on the roster,” Judge said. “Nick brings a lot of flexibility to other positions, but that’s the direction we’re going to go for right now.”