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Giants safety Phillips, RB Bradshaw questionable vs. Texans

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- With Kenny Phillips' status likely a game-time decision for the New York Giants, rookie Brian Jackson could see playing time at safety against the Houston Texans just one week after being elevated from the practice squad.

The 6-foot, 198-pound cornerback also would play out of his natural position.

Phillips didn't practice Friday after receiving limited work the previous two days because of a sprained medial collateral ligament in his left knee. The injury occurred late in Sunday night's game against the Chicago Bears, and the Giants said it is unrelated to the microfracture surgery that ended Phillips' 2009 season after just two games.

"I guess (a game-time decision) is where it's heading right now," said Phillips, who was listed as questionable on the Giants' injury report for this Sunday's game. "We will see."

Phillips called it a "minor" sprain, and early in the week, the Giants had simply said the knee was tired and sore. Though Phillips' practice limitations appeared precautionary at first, the situation appears to have worsened.

The injury news wasn't all bad. Running back Ahmad Bradshaw received limited work in Friday's practice after missing two days with a sprained right ankle, and he said he should be ready to go.

Bradshaw, who's also listed as questionable, rushed for 129 yards against the Bears.

"I didn't have any setbacks at all," he said. "It's just something that happened. I've had ankle sprains before. It's just something that occurs. There's no doubt I'll play."

Phillips' injury has forced Giants coach Tom Coughlin and defensive coordinator Perry Fewell to make adjustments at safety, where Antrel Rolle and Deon Grant are the team's only two healthy players.

Aaron Ross would be the natural option to fill in for Phillips, but Coughlin said he wants the veteran strictly at cornerback to help Terrell Thomas, who's just back from a hamstring problem, and Corey Webster handle the receiving corps for the Texans' second-ranked offense.

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That would leave Jackson, a rookie from Oklahoma, to help in an emergency situation on shutting down Texans rushing phenomenon Arian Foster. The Giants might need Jackson to help second-year linebacker Clint Sintim, who is filling in on the strong side for injured starter Keith Bulluck (toe).

"It's something new for me, so I just have to go out and try to make some plays," said Jackson, who only took his first career practice snaps at safety this week. "It's not that different because in college, you can end up playing half (the field) at corner. It's pretty much the same.

"In college, I played the boundary corner, so I was a run-support corner. It's more read and reaction than straight man-to-man. I guess they feel like they have a playmaker in me, so I'm excited."

Notes: Bulluck, DE Mathias Kiwanuka (neck), OT Will Beatty (foot), FB Madison Hedgecock (hamstring) and C Shaun O'Hara (Achilles and ankle) have been ruled out for the game. ... Bradshaw, Thomas and Phillips are questionable, and DE Osi Umenyiora (knee) and center Adam Koets (knee) are probable.

Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press

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