EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- New York Giants linebacker Mathias Kiwanuka says NFL players tend not to show any mercy when it comes to playing against an injured foe.
Kiwanuka has played with injuries and had opposing players go after whatever part of his body was aching.
That's why he bluntly said not to be surprised if the Giants somehow hit the bruised index finger on the right hand of St. Louis Rams quarterback Sam Bradford on Monday night.
When asked if he would do it, Kiwanuka pleaded the fifth.
"It is cutthroat, from the top to the bottom," Kiwanuka said Wednesday. "There is a line between playing tough and playing dirty. You just don't cross that line."
From experience, Kiwanuka knows what to expect -- and what to do if his name has appeared on the league's injury report.
"If there was something wrong with me, I would protect it because I would expect people to be coming after it now," the sixth-year veteran said. "I have a history of that going back to college, having an issue with a leg and having guys, literally after the play, run in and chop my legs out.
"So I am very, very conscious of the fact if something is on the injury report, it is going to be attacked," said the former Boston College star, who missed most of last season with a neck injury. "I don't know if everybody feels that same way."
Bradford, who was injured Sunday during the Rams' season-opening loss to the Philadelphia Eagles, made all the throws during a short practice Wednesday. He wore a special glove designed to increase blood flow to the injury.
"Everyone says I look like Michael Jackson," Bradford jokingly said. "I'm not really sure what it does. They say it works, and obviously my hand feels better, so I trust them."
Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press