Entering the season, the New York Giants defense is certainly the unit under the most scrutiny. So with speculation two of its most proven stars may miss the start of the season, a sense of urgency may already be kicking in.
According to veteran defensive lineman Justin Tuck, both Jason Pierre-Paul and Antrel Rolle are in jeopardy of starting the season on the sidelines. Tuck added a caveat, however, calling it a "just in case" situation.
Just worst-case scenario RT @art_stapleton Tuck statement JPP + Rolle might not b ready 4 opener not revelation. a "just in case" situation— Ohm Youngmisuk (@NotoriousOHM) August 13, 2013
The one bit of good news Tuck provided is that he feels great and will play in the Giants' second preseason game against the Indianapolis Colts on Aug. 18.
Last week, there was a bit of confusion about JPP's status, as general manager Jerry Reese and Pierre-Paul gave different timelines about when the defensive end would be ready.
Reese expects Pierre-Paul to play in the team's Week 1 contest against the Dallas Cowboys, while JPP said it's important he returns to the field when he's 100-percent healthy.
The Rolle injury is the newest issue the Giants defense is dealing with. Rolle was carted off the field Monday and was later diagnosed with a sprained ankle.
There is no timetable for his return.
Head coach Tom Coughlin said he hopes to have the safety come right back, while defensive coordinator Perry Fewell spoke of Rolle's importance to the defense. And that's an obvious statement, considering Rolle has yet to miss a game in three seasons and has led New York in tackles each of the last two seasons.
Rolle underwent an MRI on his right ankle, results have yet to be released. For now, the team and fans can only wait with bated breath.