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New York Giants News & Notes: Phillips To Be Ready For Opener?

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There's some potentially very good news this weekend: Kenny Phillips believes he will be ready in time to play in the Giants season opener against the Carolina Panthers. Considering that a few months ago there were rumors that Phillips' injuries were career-threatening, this is fantastic news. The Giants defense wasn't the same after Phillips got hurt, and having him healthy this season could go a long way toward getting the Giants back to the playoffs. For some more info from Phillips himself, check out this fan chat he did on NFL.com.

We've known for months that Antonio Pierce wouldn't be back next season, but his official retirement has led to a new wave of speculation as to whom his replacement will be as the Giants starting middle linebacker next season. Michael Lombardi has been told that Jonathan Goff will be the guy to get the "first crack" at replacing Pierce, though Gerris Wilkinson and Phillip Dillard will also be given a chance to compete.

Just in case you needed more of a reason to not like Tiki Barber, apparently he might be at least partially to blame for why Brandon Jacobs saw a dip in production last season. Not sure how much I believe that, but hey, any chance to blame Tiki for something is fine by me!

Some info on the Giants tight ends, directly from TE coach Mike Pope

The Manning family has long been football royalty in the city of New Orleans, but they're finding things a bit awkward now that the Saints first Super Bowl victory came at the expense of big brother Peyton.

Finally, Matt Mosley discusses the Hall of Fame prospects for some borderline guys who played in the NFC East. Scroll past (or read, if you want) the sections on 1970's Cowboys Safety Cliff Harris and former Eagles QB Donovan McNabb (I love typing that) for the section on, who else, Tiki Barber. What do you guys think, is Barber a Hall of Famer?