INDIANAPOLIS — The Giants are stuck in limbo, not only with the Collective Bargaining Agreement, but also with the health of injured DE-LB Mathias Kiwanuka.
Kiwanuka is coming off a serious neck injury that ended his 2010 season after three games, and the Giants must make a decision as he enters free agency once a new CBA is ratified.
As far as Giants GM Jerry Reese is concerned, whether Kiwanuka comes back is not only a function of health but also desire.
"He has to decide, 'Do I want to play?'" Reese said at the NFL Scouting Combine on Saturday. "He's got to make that decision himself.
"There is risk involved that we have to measure."
On Friday, head coach Tom Coughlin said Kiwanuka "seems to be doing well" and was able to avoid surgery.
"I don't think the final hurdle has been overcome, but the arrow is in the right direction," Coughlin said. "It's been positive."
Reese said he is waiting for the doctors' reports — both from the Giants' doctors, plus outside medical consulting Kiwanuka has received — before he goes forward. Kiwanuka has been in the Giants' facility working with trainers this offseason. Without a new CBA in place by March 3, Kiwanuka will have to take his rehab outside the building and out of the hands of the Giants' doctors.
Right now, all parties appear to be in a holding pattern. Reese avoided any talk related to the soon-to-expire CBA, but he did talk about Kiwanuka and the process going forward.
"I think if he gets cleared by the doctors, he can play," Reese said. "That's the No. 1 variable in the situation. Are you going to risk your health by playing football? Or are you going to be OK? I think that's what he's looking for, and waiting for everybody to confirm that. So we're hoping for the best."