Al Bello/Getty Images
Justin Tuck says he'll be ready to play after the bye week.
During the last couple of years, this Giants defense wore down as the season progressed. Injuries in the past to important players like Antonio Pierce, Kenny Phillips, Mathias Kiwanuka and Osi Umenyiora hurt this team's depth and performance.
This year, things appeared headed that way, with season-ending injuries to middle linebacker Jonathan Goff and cornerbacks Terrell Thomas and Bruce Johnson, as well as first-round pick Prince Amukamara's broken foot and Osi Umenyiora's knee surgery.
Fortunately, the easier part of their schedule came in the beginning of the season, so the Giants had a chance to weather the storm and get some guys healthy in time for the stretch run.
Osi came back in Week 4 against Arizona and has been superb. He has five sacks in three games thus far, but the same game he made his debut was the first of three straight games that Justin Tuck sat. The duo has yet to take a snap together this season, but the pass rush hasn't missed a beat. The Giants lead the league with 21 sacks, and defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul is second in the league with 7.5 sacks. Imagine the damage this defensive front will inflict on quarterbacks with a Tuck, Umenyiora and Pierre-Paul rotation. The addition of Tuck will make everyone on the line better, and a better line makes all the pieces behind it better.
Soon after the bye, the Giants should have cornerback Prince Amukamara on the field. While much shouldn't be expected from Prince right away, his services would probably not be needed immediately, and he can ease his way into game shape.
With teams like Miami, New England, and San Francisco coming up after the bye, the Giants can still use their three-safety nickel package. Prince probably wouldn't be a factor until games against Philly, New Orleans and Green Bay, which come after he should have had time to get up to speed.
The addition of Prince will help the Giants play more man coverage, which they are far better at, and it will keep safety Deon Grant off the field more since he hasn't played well at all. Antrel Rolle can go back to his safety position in the nickel package, where he's excellent in run support.