The New York Giants have taken huge blows to the gut so far this preseason, prompting fans and analysts alike to write off the team's chances of making the playoffs.
I tend to agree with them, but stranger things have happened. According to multiple reports, the team brought in four corners to work out today in an effort to find players to replace some of the four corners they've already lost.
One of those players is Lito Sheppard, former Philadelphia Eagle.
Giants fans everywhere have been ripping the organization due to the latest rash of injuries that claimed Terrell Thomas, Marvin Austin, and backup corner Brian Witherspoon for the entire season.
The nature of the game of football is such that injuries can happen anytime to anyone. These players didn't have a history of injury and you can't predict these things. Thomas is the only one you could possibly point out as an injury risk for tearing his ACL in 2005, but that was six years ago.
Don't go blaming Jerry Reese for these problems, just hope he has the foresight to fix them.
As much as it will pain you to see it, this slideshow will examine and rank the biggest blows to the New York Giants this season.
Bruce Johnson is a player that a lot of casual fans seem to have forgotten. After having a terrific rookie campaign in 2009 that came as a pleasant surprise to everyone, his 2010 season was plagued by injuries and he was eventually placed on IR after just six weeks.
Coming into this season, the Giants were expected to lean on him more and use him as a Dime corner but were devastated when he ruptured his Achilles and was lost for the season.
At the time, the injury seemed harmless because the Giants had a ton of corners around that could replace him, but Terrell Thomas, Prince Amukamara, and Brian Witherspoon are all injured along with Johnson.
The position went from deepest to thinnest in about 12 hours.
Marvin Austin, a 2011 second round pick, was expected to come in and help replace the loss of Barry Cofield but is now going to miss the entire season with a torn pectoral muscle.
The only way Austin comes back is if the Giants make a deep run in the playoffs, which, judging by the theme of this article, doesn't seem likely.
One Giants beater writer suggested that the loss of Austin isn't as bad as people think, but from what I can tell this could be a huge problem for his long term status. He hasn't played a meaningful football game since 2009 and won't return to the field until 2012.
We have to wait and see what this does to the front seven, but for now Chris Canty, Linval Joseph, and Rocky Bernard will have to do.
The Giants were so excited when they drafted Prince Amukamara because it meant they would be able to play him on the outside and move Terrell Thomas around to fit his strengths.
Now they will be without both of them for at least the first month of the season, possibly more. Tom Coughlin said he is working on a 10 week time frame for Prince, which is longer than most expected. Will Beatty suffered the same type of break in his foot last season and was out seven weeks.
The injury occurred in the beginning of August so hopefully he can make it back by some time in October. According to RotoWorld, Jerry Reese expects him back by week 5.
Let's hope for a quick recovery. Lord knows the Giants need him.
I hate seeing Boss in that uniform, especially when the news broke that his agent had verbally agreed to a deal with the Giants only to have Al Davis offer him a deal when he was on the plane back to Jersey.
You can ridicule him all you want, but the fact remains that if you were offered double the salary at one job in comparison to another, you'd take the money.
I know I would.
This leaves a gaping hole at tight end that the Giants have yet to fill. In both of their preseason games thus far the position has been awful. Look for them to find a solution after teams start making cuts. John Carlson would be an interesting fit if the Seahawks decide he won't be OK with the backup role.
This signing easily overshadows losing Boss mainly because he chose to go to a division rival. But not only that, John Mara also revealed—in the same radio interview he mentioned Boss—that the Giants offered Smith a contract last season that would have made him one of the highest-paid receivers in the league.
Smith turned it down because he wanted to test the free agent waters. I guess karma does exist because Smith got hurt and had to take a one-year deal with the Eagles.
The Giants have several good wide receivers on the roster that could replace Smith, but none of them are as good as he is, and Eli Manning is going to have to make that adjustment.
Hands down the most crushing blow to the Giants was losing Terrell Thomas to a freak injury on what would have been his last play of the game.
Several of his teammates in the defensive backfield admitted they shed a few tears for Thomas, because they knew how hard he worked to get to the high level he was playing at.
"We found out before halftime, and most of us had tears in our eyes," safety Deon Grant said. "Just to see the work he put in this offseason, and seeing his confidence level and what he'd been doing during training camp, it bothered us more than a regular injury.
We had tears in our eyes for him, because we knew how humble he was with it, and how good he was looking. I prayed with him (at halftime), and told him don't kill your spirit. We know your plan was to go out there and play big, but sometimes God's plan is a lot different than what our plan is, and we told him that."
Defensive end and captain Justin Tuck also commented on the severity of the injury.
"It's devastating," Tuck said. "The timing couldn't be worse for him. Obviously, he was looking for a big payday. My heart goes out to him. He has done everything the right way, everything the Giants and the coaches have asked him to do, he has done above average."
Eli Manning also appreciates the player Thomas is and hopes he can return the same guy next year.
"It's a shame. He's a great guy to go against in practice. He brings it every day. He always shows up on the game field. He makes plays all the time. It's a shame and I wish him well. And I wish him a quick recovery."
There is no question the loss of Thomas takes a huge hit on the Giants' chances of making the playoffs. Aaron Ross played well last night but was awful in the opener. He's in a contract year with everything to prove and he's getting that opportunity. Let's hope he makes the most of it.