Giants will miss WR Smith next few weeks

Posted Nov. 19, 2010 @ 12:23 p.m.
Posted By Eric Edholm

Despite the fact that Hakeem Nicks appeared to have replaced Steve Smith as the Giants' big-play, go-to receiver this season, there's little question that the loss of Smith for a few weeks with a pectoral injury is a loss that will sting. QB Eli Manning hasn't thrown his way quite as often as last season, Smith is the team's best option on third down, especially in medium yards-to-go situations. He is a precise route runner, setting up defenders well and getting loose in tight quarters. Although Mario Manningham caught a career-high 10 passes with Smith out in Week 10, he is not nearly as dependable in Manning's eyes and has a different skill set. And Smith's presence prevented Nicks from seeing bracket coverage on the outside, which is one big reason why he has nine TD catches this season.