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New York Giants place Andre Brown on injured reserve

New York Giants running back Andre Brown was one of the cool, early stories of the 2012 season after his breakout game on "Thursday Night Football" against the Carolina Panthers. Now, his season essentially is over.

The Giants announced Monday that Brown will be placed on injured reserve, designated to return, after he broke his leg during Sunday's win over the Green Bay Packers. He won't be eligible to return to the team until after the NFC Championship. So Brown's season isn't necessarily over if the Giants make the Super Bowl.

After bouncing around the NFL with six teams, Brown was being used in tandem with starter Ahmad Bradshaw to great effect. Brown received the short-yardage and goal-line work.

"Takes an awful lot off the win, to be honest with you," coach Tom Coughlin said about Brown's injury after the game.

Brown had eight touchdowns and a 5.3 yards-per-carry average on the season. His absence will put a greater spotlight on first-round draft pick David Wilson, who has struggled to pick up pass protection concepts. Still, Wilson understands he'll need to raise his game.

"Andre played a big role in our offense," Wilson said, "so with his absence somebody is going to have to definitely step up on the offensive side of the ball and the coaches told me that I'm the next guy, so I've been preparing and hopefully I'll be ready when they call my number,"

Look for the Giants to add depth for the bench via free agency in the upcoming days.

Follow Gregg Rosenthal on Twitter @greggrosenthal.

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